Previous Section Index Home Page


Police Road Blocks

Mr. Beith: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the circumstances in which the police can carry out a road block. [25047]

Mr. Michael: Police powers to carry out road checks are set out in legislation. The Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 provides that the police may establish a road check to deal with persons unlawfully at large or where there is a serious arrestable offence involving those travelling or considered to be travelling in a vehicle. Section 13A of the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1989, as inserted by section 81 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, also created a new power for the police to stop and search vehicles for the purposes of preventing terrorism.

In addition, section 163 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 (as amended) provides that a person driving a mechanically propelled vehicle on a road must stop the vehicle on being required to do so by a constable in uniform.

Crown Servants

Mr. Beith: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on how many occasions his Department has consulted competitors of an employer making an offer of employment to an official from his Department, for the purpose of compliance with the Civil Service Management Code rules on the acceptance of outside appointments by Crown servants, in each year for which the rules have applied; and if he will make a statement. [25862]

Mr. Straw: Since the introduction of the revised Business Appointment Rules with effect from 1 April 1996, there has been no occasion for the Department to consult competitor companies in these circumstances.

29 Jan 1998 : Column: 344

Information for each of the years preceding for which the rules have applied could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Mr. Beith: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Deparment if he will publish the information collected for the purpose of compliance with the Civil Service Management Code rules on the acceptance of outside appointments by Crown Servants, in each year for which the rules have applied; and if he will make a statement. [25896]

Mr. Straw: Since 1 April 1996, when the Business Appointment Rules in their current form came into effect, 24 members of staff across the Department and its agencies have reported offers of employment. These resulted in 19 applications for approval under the Rules.

Staff are made aware, on appointment, of their obligations under the Business Appointment Rules and again, on leaving. General reminders are issued from time to time but it is the responsibility of the individual to comply with the requirements.

There is no fully effective comprehensive mechanism for monitoring compliance with the Rules once individuals have left Crown employment. The emphasis is on ensuring that staff are fully aware of their obligations under the Rules before they leave, and on giving the individual the opportunity to discuss the matter and, if they wish, to make representations in cases where conditions are imposed.

Any failure to comply with the Rules could come to the Department's notice in any number of ways. Any condition which prohibits a former member of staff from dealing with the Department on behalf of an outside employer would, of course, be monitored.

Animal Experiments

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is his Department's policy on maximum time allowable for journeys of non-human primates to United Kingdom laboratories; and if he will make a statement. [25751]

Mr. George Howarth: The Home Office does not currently specify maximum journey times. Information collected by the Home Office on the transportation of non-human primates from overseas sources, including the total journey times between centres of origin and receiving establishments, is currently being analysed. The results will be presented to the primate sub-committee of the Animal Procedures Committee for their advice on future policy concerning the suitability of overseas breeding and supplying centres.

Fire Rescue Unit (Euston)

Ms Ryan: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many incidents in the London Borough of Enfield the Fire Rescue Unit based at Euston has attended since the Fire Rescue Unit based at Finchley was removed. [25837]

Mr. George Howarth: This information is not available in the form requested. The London Borough of Enfield is served by three fire stations which collectively cover the whole borough (except the Hadley Wood area) and small parts of the boroughs of Barnet and Haringey.

29 Jan 1998 : Column: 345

Information on fire calls is collected on a fire station basis. The Fire Rescue Unit at Finchley was removed on 1 February 1997. I understand from the London Fire and Civil Defence Authority that, for the period from that date until 31 December 1997, the Unit based at Euston was mobilised to the relevant area on 164 occasions.

CS Gas

Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many times during 1997 CS gas was used by police in the Metropolitan Police area. [25435]

Mr. Michael: I understand from the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis that during 1997 the Metropolitan Police used CS incapacitant spray on 190 occasions.

Police Complaints

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of complaints about the police in (a) Kingston upon Thames and (b) Richmond upon Thames have been (i) upheld, (ii) dismissed and (iii) dropped by the complainant during the last year for which figures are available. [25526]

Mr. Michael: The Commissioner has provided the following provisional figures for the period 1 January 1997 to 31 December 1997.

UpheldDismissedDropped (23)
Twickenham Division04351
Kingston Division65853

(23) Includes complaints resolved informally.


DEFENCE

Atomic-Weapons Establishment, Aldermaston

Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when the chemical technology division at the Atomic Weapons Establishment, Aldermaston, was set up; what is the purpose of this division; how many series of technical papers or reports are currently being produced by this division; and what are the names of each series. [24509]

Mr. Spellar: The chemical technology division of the Atomic Weapons Establishment, Aldermaston, was set up in about 1959. It ceased to exist as a separate division in 1991. Its purpose was to develop materials for use in warheads, to conduct research into the chemical properties of such materials and to design chemical engineering processes for their manufacture. It also operated certain associated chemical plant. During its existence two largely classified series of reports were produced dealing with materials and technical matters entitled, (i) Reports/ Laboratory Reports/Materials Reports and (ii) Technical Memoranda 1959-90.

Armed Forces (Allowances and Charges)

Mr. Key: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what changes have been made since February 1997 to the armed forces allowances and charges package which

29 Jan 1998 : Column: 346

indicate progress towards greater equity of treatment between married and single personnel; and if he will make a statement. [25759]

Dr. Reid: The previous Government published on 20 February 1997, Official Report, column 721, an information document "The Armed Forces of the Future--a Personnel Strategy", which included outline details of changes to the allowances and charges package for personnel in the armed forces. These changes were implemented on 1 December 1997.

The rationale underpinning the changes was, and continues to be, predicated on targeting these allowances where they are most needed to assist with recruitment and retention, and to compensate for the extra costs and disadvantages of Service life.

We have no plans at present to make further changes, although the situation is, of course, kept under review.

Aircraft Requirements

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer of 19 January 1998, Official Report, column 415, for what reasons Airbus has been invited to tender for the RAF's heavy lift requirements; and when the competition will commence for this project. [25624]

Mr. Spellar: As my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence announced on 31 July 1997, Official Report, column 466, we will join partners in issuing a request for proposals to Airbus Military Company for the future large aircraft. We are also inviting our partners to join us in seeking bids from other aircraft manufacturers. The request for proposals has been issued to Airbus, Turkish Aerospace Industries, Alenia and FLABEL on a provisional basis pending the formation of Airbus Military Company. We are still discussing with our partners when requests for proposals will be issued to other potential suppliers. A procurement decision will be made in the light of the conclusions of the Strategic Defence Review and responses to requests for proposals.


Next Section Index Home Page