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Mr. Keith Bradley: The following list provides the twenty most common triable either-way offences based on the number of defendants proceeded against in England and Wales in 2000 (statistics for 2001 are not yet available) extracted from the Home Office Court Proceedings Database. They relate to the principal offence for which a person was proceeded against, if dealt with for more than one offence at the same time.
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Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to take action to make it an offence for an adult to deceive minors into exposing themselves; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Keith Bradley: This whole area is one which we are looking at very carefully as part of our consideration of the recommendations for new sexual offences proposed in "Setting the Boundaries", the report of the Sex Offences Review. The review proposed a new offence of adult sexual abuse of a child, including
Mr. Keith Bradley: We are currently considering how to change existing sex offences in light of the recommendations made to Government in "Setting the Boundaries" and the more than 700 responses that were received during the consultation period. We will be bringing forward legislation when parliamentary time allows and will publish a summary of our proposals in the Library as soon as possible.
Angela Eagle: A national event was held in Manchester on the evening of Sunday 27 January attended by a wide audience including senior public figures, Holocaust survivors, community representatives and students.
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A wide range of activities took place around the country organised by local authorities and community groups. They were encouraged to put details of their activities on the dedicated website www.holocaustmemorialday.gov.uk.
Angela Eagle: A wide range of activities took place around the country organised by local authorities and community groups. They were encouraged to put details of their activities on the dedicated website www.holocaustmemorialday.gov.uk. There were over 160 known events, involving at least 80 local authorities.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what his estimate is of the expenditure of his Department on newspapers, magazines and periodicals in each of the last four years. 
Beverley Hughes: Available data are shown in the table. Figures are collected in respect of self-harm (which covers all acts of self-injury, however serious) and self-inflicted deaths: there is no separate definition of "attempted suicide". Figures in respect of self-injury from 1998 and in respect of self-inflicted deaths for the entire period are age related rather than location based because many young offenders are not located in Young Offender Institutions (YOIs). The definition of self-harm and recording practices are under review.
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|Year||Juveniles (1517)||Young Offenders (1821)||Total|
(21) Year 2001 figures up to 30 November 2001
|Juveniles (1517)||Young Offenders (1821)||Total|
Beverley Hughes: A proactive strategy is in place to reduce suicide and self-harm in prison and make prisons safer for all who live and work there. The strategy target areas of greatest risk, recognising that prisoners under 21 years of age are especially vulnerable, whether or not located in Young Offender Institutions (YOIs). Feltham YOI and Eastwood Park, which holds young women offenders, are among five prisons selected as pilot sites for the installation of safer cells, first night support centres, crisis suites and cells that enable staff to monitor at risk prisoners. Other initiatives, which focus on the early period in custody, include physical improvements to reception and induction areas and removal of ligature points.
The Prison Service is bidding for funds to provide an extra 860 safer cells in 16 YOIs. The under 18 age group will additionally benefit from the Prison Service's joint working with the Youth Justice Board, which is investing £1 million this financial year on safer cells. Work is also in hand on developing an effective cell sharing assessment tool; developing peer and outside support schemes suitable for young people; reducing violence and bullying; and improving identification and assessment of at risk young people and their care plans.
Mr. Heath: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the average waiting time has been in the last 12 months for which figures are available for decisions to be made on immigration applications from (a) work permit holders, (b) people with UK ancestry, (c) EEA nationals and their families, (d) spouses, (e) fiancés and fiancées and (f) asylum seekers; and if he will make a statement. 
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Angela Eagle: The table provides the information requested on asylum seekers for the period of October 2000 to September 2001, inclusive. The average decision times have been calculated using all initial decisions made for which data are available, including a minimal number of cases decided under the backlog criteria, as well as new cases. These data are subject to revision following quality checking.
|October 2000 to September 2001||14|
(22) The average length of time (in months) is calculated from date application is lodged to the date of initial decision, and relates to the month in which the decisions were made.
(23) Figures are estimates based on cases for which information is recorded.
(24) Based on data from A-CID (Asylum Cases Information Database).
(25) Excluding dependants.
(26) Provisional figures.
We do not routinely publish processing times for individual types of general and settlement applications. We aim to decide all straightforward applications within three weeks, although at present it is taking up to eight weeks. This is due to the exceptionally high number of applications received in 2001, especially in recent months, and process changes which are being introduced to improve our longer term performance. We are working to reduce this to three weeks as soon as possible.
Mr. Heath: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what target waiting times for immigration applications are used in respect of (a) work permit holders, (b) people with UK ancestry, (c) EEA nationals and their spouses, (d) fiancés and fianceés, (e) spouses and (f) asylum seekers; what proportion of cases have met the waiting time targets in the last 12 months for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement. 
Angela Eagle: We aim to decide 70 per cent. of all new general and settlement application within three weeks, and met this for the first half of 2001. We do not generally prioritise specific categories of application other than for European Economic Area (EEA) nationals where, under European Community (EC) legislation, we have to deal with any application for a residence permit within six months. During 2001 such cases were on average dealt within three-four months. Regrettably at present it is taking up to eight weeks to decide new straightforward applications due to the exceptionally high number of new applications received during 2001, especially in recent months; and process changes that are being introduced to improve our longer term performance. We are working to reduce this timescale to three weeks or less as soon as possible.
The asylum decision target for 200102 is to make 60 per cent. of initial decisions in new substantive cases within two months of the date of application. We intend to publish provisional figures indicating progress over the first half of the year with the quarterly asylum statistics bulletin on 28 February 2002.
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