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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if the target for the rate of escapes from contracted-out escorts expressed as a ratio of prisoners handled was met by March 2001. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The Prison Service met this key performance indicator target in the 200001 year. There was one escape for every 21,649 prisoners handled during the year. This was better than the target not to exceed one per 20,000 prisoners handled.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many nationality applications were completed in the year to March 2001; and how many he expects to be completed in the year to March 2002. 
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if the PSA target of a reduction in the level of reoffending by drug misusing offenders (a) was met by March 2001 and (b) has since been exceeded. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The Public Service Agreement target currently is: to reduce levels of repeat offending amongst drug misusing offenders by 25 per cent by 2005 (and by 50 per cent by 2008). There is no interim target set for 2001.
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Angela Eagle [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The target for the year ending 31 March 2002 is to decide and serve 60 per cent of new substantive asylum claims made in that same year within two months. The latest provisional data, published on 28 February 2002, indicate that nearly half (48 per cent) of applications received in the period April to September 2001 inclusive had initial decisions served within two months. Information on the percentage of asylum cases in the year ending 31 March 2002 with decisions made and served within two months is not yet available.
The data are published in the quarterly asylum statistics. The next publication will be available from 31 May 2002 on the Home Office Research Development and Statistics Directorate website at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/ immigration1.html.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many failed asylum seekers were removed in the year to March 2001; and how many he expects to be removed in the year to March 2002. 
Angela Eagle [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The number of failed asylum seekers removed in the year to March 2001 was 8,930. The current Service Delivery Agreement target relating to the removal of failed asylum seekers from the United Kingdom is to remove 30,000 in 200102; 33,000 in 200203; and 37,000 in 200304. The totals include dependants.
The 30,000 target for this year has always been ambitious and high risk. To enable us to reach and exceed 30,000 removals per year by 2003, we need to remove about 2,500 people per month. It is our aim to achieve this monthly total as soon as possible.
Information on the number of initial decisions made in the year to 31 March 2002 is not yet available. However, in line with plans, the number of cases awaiting an initial decision has continued to fall, 71,320 initial decisions were made during the period April 2001 to December 2001, compared with 85,960 in the same period a year previously.
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Information on initial decisions is published quarterly. The next publication will cover the period up to March 2002, and will be available from 31 May 2002 on the Home Office Research Development and Statistics Directorate website at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/ immigration1.html.
Julie Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what assessment he has made of the impact on the policy of detaining children who are seeking asylum of the (a) provisions of the Children Act 1989 and (b) provisions of the Human Rights Act 1998; 
(3) whether the rights and needs of the child must be considered before any decision to detain a child seeking asylum is taken. 
Angela Eagle [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The Children Act 1989 places a duty on local social services departments to provide for unaccompanied asylum seeking children. As a matter of policy and practice all those accepted as being unaccompanied asylum seeking children are referred to the local social services department. Unaccompanied asylum seeking children are not routinely detained under immigration powers. But detention may occasionally be necessary in exceptional circumstances whilst alternative arrangements for their care are made. Where detention is in such circumstances necessary, this is normally limited to overnight, with appropriate care.
Families may be detained at the Oakington Reception Centre whilst their claim for asylum is processed. In other cases a family would be detained in line with the general detention criteria, which include consideration of the likelihood of removal, evidence of previous absconding and previous history of complying with the requirements of immigration control. There is however, as in any other case, a presumption in favour of granting temporary admission or temporary release.
Any case where it is proposed to detain a family will be risk-assessed by the Immigration Service. Checks are made to see if any child is on the "At Risk" register. In addition the family protection team at the local police station will be contacted. If there has been any involvement by the Social Services in any particular family case, they will also be consulted before an operation leading to the detention of children is undertaken.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what (a) financial and (b) other criteria are to be used for measurement of the PSA target on efficiency in the criminal justice system. 
Mr. Keith Bradley [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The 2000 Criminal Justice System Public Service Agreement (PSA) committed the criminal justice departments in defining a measure for value for money (rather than efficiency) in the system. Work is continuing
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on this, but it has not yet proved possible to devise a satisfactory single measure of system-wide performance. Meanwhile, however, each component part of the system has an efficiency or value for money target, and has plans in place to meet its target.
Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people detained under immigration law have died in each of the past five years; and of those how many are believed to have committed suicide. 
Angela Eagle [holding answer 10 April 2002]: There was one incident of a death in immigration detention in the last five years. The incident occurred in January 2000 and is believed to have been a suicide although the inquest returned an open verdict.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when his Department will reply to the letter dated 18 September 2001 from the hon. Member for Epsom and Ewell relating to an inquiry by Mr. C Barfield of 2 Cuddington Avenue, Worcester Park, Surrey. 
|Officers in Post 31 March||Ill Health Retirements per Calendar Year|
|2002 (to 25/03/02)||23,067||18|
Figures include prison officers, senior officers and principal officers.
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