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BAE Systems

Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will make a statement on the employment implications of BAE Systems' decision to close the Regional Jet RJ and RJX programme; and what steps his Department is taking to provide assistance to the employees being made redundant at Woodford. [20354]

Mr. Nicholas Brown: Redundancies were announced by BAE Systems on the 27 November at a number of UK locations including Woodford where 993 redundancies will take place.

Employment Services have arranged a meeting with the management team at BAE on the 5 December to discuss the support available for employees. This is likely to include an on-site Jobshop, with support for employees' jobsearch, along with training and careers advice and guidance. We will be working with local training providers and the North West Development Agency to ensure that support meets local needs.

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Remploy

Mr. Clelland: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many employees of Remploy have been dismissed in the past 12 months; and how many of these were trainees. [20424]

Maria Eagle: During the 12 months from December 2000 to November 2001, 2,315 people left Remploy's employment, for a variety of reasons.

The number of trainees leaving the WorkStep programme without employment during this period was 189. Reasons for leaving included poor conduct, resigning for personal reasons, and medical reasons.

During the same period, Remploy took on 344 trainees into permanent positions in Remploy sites and progressed another 121 trainees into external employment.

Mr. Clelland: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many non-disabled workers have been recruited through agencies who are employed by Remploy. [20425]

Maria Eagle: Remploy rarely recruits employees through the use of employment agencies relying mostly on the Employment Service to refer candidates for employment.

Remploy does use agency labour (not employed by Remploy) from time to time to address temporary work load fluctuations, or the need for specialist skills. These individuals are supplied by an agency, often on a week- to-week, short-term, temporary basis, to meet customer demands while avoiding incurring long-term costs and liabilities.

Currently, Remploy is using around 30 agency employees in this capacity.

Mr. Clelland: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what was the total cost of administration in Remploy in (a) 1997–98, (b) 1998–99, (c) 1999–2000 and (d) 2000–01. [20426]

Maria Eagle: The total costs of administration in Remploy were:

Year£ million
1997–9819.6
1998–9917.6
1999–200017.7
2000–0118.0

These totals cover all salary and bought-in costs for everything except direct labour, factory overheads, sales and marketing, distribution and financial charges.

Mr. Clelland: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the individual annual remuneration was to (a) the Chairman and (b) executive directors of Remploy in (i) 1997–98, (ii) 1998–99, (iii) 1999–2000 and (iv)2000–01. [20427]

Maria Eagle: Individual annual remunerations were as follows.

£

1997–981998–991999–20002000–01
Chairman (D. G. Heywood)14,00013,00010,400
Chairman (A. E. Pedder—appointed 1 January 2000)10,80072,500
Chief Executive (A. G. H. Withey)110,000115,000114,50047,700
Chief Executive (R. Paffard—appointed 1.11.00)58,000
Finance Director78,00080,00084,10087,800
Personnel Director76,00078,00083,00086,200
Operations Director76,00079,00084,20097,200
Sales and Marketing Director (appointed 1 November 1998 to 31 December 2000)31,00076,400

(20) Mr. Pedder's involvement was increased to provide cover until the new chief executive was appointed, and to develop the new strategies for the company.


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Mr. Clelland: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what were the average weekly hours worked by Remploy employees in (a) 1997–98, (b) 1998–99, (c) 1999–2000 and (d) 2000–01. [20432]

Maria Eagle: Remploy does not record average weekly hours of work for its employees.

However, in this period the standard contracted hours of work for employees have reduced.

In 1997–98, standard hours were 37 per week. On 31 May 1999 they were reduced to 36.5 hours per week and on 5 June 2000 they were further reduced to 36 hours per week.

Disability Living Allowance

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what plans he has to review the (a) design and (b) content of the disability living allowance claim form to make it more accessible to people with mental health problems; and if he will ensure that mental health service users play an active part in this review. [20781]

Maria Eagle: We are currently looking at how the disability living allowance claim form can be made more easily accessible for all disabled people: This follows changes earlier this year, when we reduced the claim pack by nine pages without losing essential information. However, we recognise that people with mental health problems can have special difficulty expressing their needs on a claim form, which is why we are considering alternative methods of obtaining the information we need, for example, by using Community Psychiatric Nurses to interview some people with mental health problems.

We intend to consult organisations of, and for disabled people, including those with mental health problems, as part of these initiatives.

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions for what reason the Government last year added regulation 10C of DLA Regulations, pursuant to the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1972 on what constituted attention in section 72(1) for the disability living allowance care component. [20880]

Maria Eagle: Regulation 10C was added to the Social Security (Disability Living Allowance) Regulations 1991 with effect from 25 September 2000 in order to make clear that remote "attention" via the telephone, or other electronic means, does not count as attention in connection with bodily functions for the purposes of the care component of disability living allowance. This

12 Dec 2001 : Column: 904W

restores the original policy intention that attention in connection with bodily functions must be carried out in the presence of the severely disabled person.

HIV

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will amend the Liability Discrimination Act 1995 to protect people with HIV from discrimination at the point of diagnosis. [20879]

Maria Eagle: We are currently considering what amendments should be made to the Disability Discrimination Act 1995.

Nursing Care

Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what entitlement self-funding residents in residential or nursing care have to (a) attendance allowance, (b) nursing care contributions from their local health authority in England from 1 October, (c) attendance allowance and (d) nursing and personal care contributions under the scheme for such support proposed by the Scottish Executive. [20898]

Maria Eagle: People in residential care or nursing homes in England and Scotland who fund the whole cost of their care from their own resources can receive attendance allowance. From 1 October 2001, such residents in England can have the opportunity to have their need for nursing care assessed by an NHS nurse. This determines the level of payment that the NHS pays to the nursing home in respect of that person's nursing care: low (£35 per week), medium (£70 per week) and high (£110 per week). Such payments are disregarded in determining whether or not a person is a self-funder.

Proposals for changes to the provision of nursing and personal care in Scotland are a matter for the Scottish Executive. If, however, the result of the proposals for personal care are such that people who were self-funders no longer meet the whole cost of their care from their own resources attendance allowance will no longer be payable.

Social Fund

Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many Social Fund payments made at the Wallasey or Hoylake offices which are paid off-line will be met from (a) additional departmental funds and (b) existing Social Fund allocation for the Wirral area. [20909]

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Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 6 December 2001]: As is the normal practice for all social fund payments, any which are paid off-line are being met from the existing social fund allocation for the Wirral District. However, as a matter of course, the District budget is closely monitored.


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