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Vaccinations

Mr. Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many school children (a) nationally and (b) in Dorset have received BCG vaccinations during the 2000-01 academic year; and if he will make a statement. [147035]

Yvette Cooper: Information about BCG vaccinations is contained in the Statistical Bulletin "NHS Immunisation Statistics, England: 1999-2000". A copy of the bulletin is in the Library and can also be found on the Department of Health website www.doh.gov.uk/public/sb0026.htm.

BCG vaccine is recommended for people at higher risk of exposure to tuberculosis (infants from certain ethnic groups at increased risk, those at occupational risk, and new immigrants from, and those travelling to, high risk areas for tuberculosis) and for previously unimmunised schoolchildren at the age of 10-14 years.

In September 1999, the schools part of this programme was suspended following interruption of supply of vaccine due to problems in the manufacture of the only product licensed for use in the United Kingdom. Vaccine has

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remained available for all high risk groups throughout this time, and in July 2000 the schools programme in London was reinstated.

Restoration of the remaining part of the schools programme will be announced in due course when supplies of vaccine allow.

Mrs. Fiona Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to offer parents the choice of having their children vaccinated with individual inoculations for mumps, measles and rubella. [147451]

Yvette Cooper: I refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave my hon. Friend the Member for Glasgow, Govan (Mr. Sarwar), on 22 January 2001, Official Report, column 430W.

Alcohol Strategy

Ms Glenda Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress has been made on a national alcohol strategy; and if he will make a statement. [147879]

Ms Stuart: We remain committed to the publication of a cross Government strategy to tackle alcohol misuse, and we are working with key stakeholders across Government, the alcohol field and the alcohol industry to ensure that this commitment is delivered.

Child Migrants (Zimbabwe)

Mr. Coaker: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment he has made of the situation of former child migrants in Zimbabwe; [142820]

Mr. Hutton [pursuant to his reply, 19 December 2000, c. 142W]: I regret that my previous reply was incorrect. I received representations from one former child migrant in Zimbabwe, in May last year, which were also passed on to me by my hon. Friend the Member for Wakefield (Mr. Hinchliffe) in July. I also understand that the British High Commission in Harare, Zimbabwe has recently received another.

LORD CHANCELLOR'S DEPARTMENT

Televised Trials

30. Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if he will make it his policy to allow for the televising of trials. [146211]

Mr. Lock: No. My noble and learned Friend the Lord Chancellor has made clear his view that court proceedings should not be televised.

Court Security

31. Mr. Bercow: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what assessment she has made of the adequacy of security measures during court hearings. [146212]

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Jane Kennedy: The security of prisoners in custody (or in the dock) is the responsibility of Her Majesty's Prison Service.

Risk in relation to physical security of Crown, county and combined courts is regularly assessed against an agreed set of minimum security standards. Each court is assessed at least every three years but more if circumstances dictate.

Indeed, as a result of the recent incident involving Judge Goddard at the central criminal court, the Lord Chancellor has instituted a departmental security inquiry which will be looking at the reasons behind the incident, including the adequacy of communication and the security measures within the courtrooms themselves.

Responsibility for security in magistrates courts rests with magistrates courts committees (MCCs) and it is expected that every MCC should conduct regular security risk assessments.

35. Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department when she last discussed the level of policing in the courts with chief constables; and if she will make a statement. [146216]

Jane Kennedy: The Lord Chancellor has never discussed the level of policing in courts with chief constables. This is, however, something that is regularly undertaken by senior officials from his Department and which Presiding and Resident Judges have discussed with chief constables in the past.

Crown Courts

32. Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what recent representations she has received regarding the closure of Crown courts; and if she will make a statement. [146213]

Jane Kennedy: None.

Circuit Judges

33. Ms Ward: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if he will make a statement on the number of (a) women circuit judges and (b) ethnic minority circuit judges. [146214]

Mr. Lock: On 1 January this year there were 574 circuit judges; 44 were women, an increase of 52 per cent. since May 1997; six circuit judges were of ethnic minority origin--this figure has remained static since May 1997. The Lord Chancellor is well aware that progress needs to be made so that the judiciary better reflects the society it serves and he is working hard to achieve that. This can only happen progressively as the pool of suitable candidates grows.

Rural Magistrates Courts

34. Mr. Simon Thomas: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if she will make a statement on his guidelines for funding rural magistrates courts. [146215]

Jane Kennedy: Each magistrates courts committee decides the number and location of courthouses in its area and how it spends the money it has been given.

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Family Graduated Fees Scheme

36. Sandra Gidley: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what progress is being made on the new family graduated fees scheme; and if he will make a statement. [146217]

Mr. Lock: My noble and learned Friend the Lord Chancellor and I have considered all the views and suggestions received from respondents to the consultation and have made final decisions on the structure of the scheme and the rates to be paid. A letter was sent on 29 January to the Chairman of the Bar Council and the President of the Law Society setting out our final proposals. A copy of the final structure document and the draft regulations which include a schedule of the fees have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Lay Magistracy

37. Mr. David Taylor: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what her policy is on the relationship between lay magistrates and district judges. [R] [146218]

Jane Kennedy: We believe that there is bound to be a continuing and major role for the foreseeable future for both lay and professional judges in the criminal courts. Each brings a different approach and a different range of experience to the court; making effective use of that experience can only be to the benefit of the community.

Judges (Training)

38. Angela Smith: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department when he last reviewed the procedure for the training of judges. [146219]

Mr. Lock: Judicial training is the responsibility of the Judicial Studies Board, an independent body, chaired by Lord Justice Waller (a Lord Justice of Appeal). The Judicial Studies Board keeps the training it provides under constant review.

Human Rights Act

39. Dr. Naysmith: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what assessment he has made of the resource implications for the work of his Department on the Human Rights Act 1998; and if he will make a statement. [146220]

Mr. Lock: The Government have set aside £21 million for additional court sittings if they are required and £39 million for legal aid if it is required. For further detail, I refer my hon. Friend to the replies given on 10 April 2000, Official Report, column 21W, and 26 June 2000, Official Report, column 430W. In addition to this, training for staff in my Department was met within existing resources.

Mrs. Fiona Jones: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department how many of the judiciary have undergone training on the implications of the Human Rights Act 1998. [147450]

Mr. Lock: Judicial training is the responsibility of the Judicial Studies Board. In preparation for the implementation of the Human Rights Act, the Judicial Studies Board held a series of one-day training events to which every full-time and part-time judge in England and

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Wales was invited. 3,491 members of the judiciary (including 67 chairmen and members of tribunals) attended these seminars.


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