|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Jon Owen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the answer of 9 November 2001, Official Report, column 498W, to the hon. Member for Hornchurch (John Cryer), how many applications have been made under the regularisation scheme for overstayers; how many applicants have had their cases decided; how many cases are (a) under consideration and (b) awaiting action; and how many applicants have had their cases refused. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 9 July 2002]: A total of 17,120 applications were received for consideration under the Regularisation Scheme for Overstayers. During the last financial year (200102) a sift of the cases yielded a total of 1,288 easily identifiable grants under existing policy concessions. During the current financial year significantly more caseworking staff and resources are being devoted to the more detailed
15 Jul 2002 : Column 89W
consideration of the remaining cases. To date 341 further grants have been identified together with 111 refusals. This leaves 15,380 cases to be decided. Of these 10,895 cases are currently awaiting consideration in Integrated Casework Directorate (North). Work is also under way to validate the status of the remaining 4,485 cases, which are currently being dealt with in other areas of the Immigration and Nationality Directorate (IND). Of all the applications received, 1,629 applications have been granted.
Mr. Allen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 17 June 2002, Official Report, column 102W, on crime and disorder partnerships, what sanctions he can impose if the police do not discuss with their local partners significant changes in policing practice which might affect how the partnership delivers its crime and disorder reduction strategy. 
Mr. Denham: Each police force is required under section 96 of the Police Act 1996 to obtain the views of the community on policing in that force area and their co-operation in crime prevention. The police authority for that area is responsible for making arrangements for this in consultation with the chief officer. If it appears to the Secretary of State that these arrangements are inadequate, he may ask for a report. Having considered that report, he can require the arrangements to be reviewed and a further report submitted.
The Crime and Disorder Act 1998 further places a statutory requirement on the police and the local authority jointly to develop and implement a strategy for tackling crime and disorder. There are no specific sanctions under the 1998 Act but this does not preclude Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary from examining and, if necessary, criticising the police if they fail to work effectively with other agencies.
The Local Government Act 1998 places a duty on police authorities, as best value authorities, to ensure continuous improvement by undertaking reviews of all the service's functions. All best value reviews must follow a process of challenge, compare, compete and consult. Any best value review which focuses on performance in service delivery to the public will therefore include consulting the users of the service. Police authorities publish information about best value reviews completed in the previous year and projected for the coming year in their annual Performance Plans.
15 Jul 2002 : Column 90W
Beverley Hughes: I regret that reliable information on the entry routes of asylum seekers, including when asylum seekers first enter the United Kingdom, is not available. Information on the numbers of unaccompanied children who applied at port and in-country during the last five years available, is given in the table.
|Year of application||Applied at port||Applied in-country||Total|
(20) Unaccompanied at the point of their arrival and not known to be joining.
(21) May exclude some cases lodged at local enforcement centres.
(22) Figures exclude disputed age cases.
(23) Provisional figures.
Corresponding data for 2001 will be published in the annual statistics bulletin 'Asylum Statistics United Kingdom 2001' on 31 July, available from the Library or via the RDS website http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/ immigration1.html
Reliable information on the number of children who have entered the United Kingdom as asylum seekers, accompanied by an adult, could only be obtained by examination of individual case records at disproportionate cost.
Sir Teddy Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many persons applied for political asylum in 2001; how many of those applicants came to the UK from France; and how many of the asylum seekers who came to the UK via France in 2001 had first applied for asylum in France. 
Beverley Hughes: Provisional figures show that in 2001, 71,700 principal applicants applied for asylum in the United Kingdom. Including dependants, the number of applicants was estimated to be 88,300.
I regret that reliable information on the entry routes of asylum seekers from their country of origin to the United Kingdom, or on whether applicants have previously applied for asylum outside the United Kingdom, is not available. In 2001 over a third (36 per cent.) of applications were made at United Kingdom ports, while most applications (64 per cent.) were made in country.
Information on asylum applications is published quarterly. The next publication will be available from 30 August 2002 on the Home Office Research Development and Statistics Directorate website at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/immigration1.html.
15 Jul 2002 : Column 91W
As at the end of March 2002 the number of asylum seekers (including dependants) supported in NASS accommodation in London was 1,870, and the number of asylum seekers (including dependants) receiving subsistence only support in London was 21,370 1 .
Statistics on the number of asylum seekers supported by NASS in each region are available on the Home Office's Immigration and Asylum Statistics website: http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/immigration1.html.
Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what European countries his Department are in discussions with to ensure there is co-operation in relation to asylum procedures being followed by the United Kingdom. 
Beverley Hughes: We are in discussion with all European Union states on a broad range of measures designed to establish minimum standards for asylum procedures and policies across the European Union. The European Council in Seville set a timetable for their completion by the end of 2003. This includes negotiations on a revised proposal concerning asylum procedures within the European Union.
The United Kingdom will continue to play a leading role in the process through active participation in negotiations with other member states. We have done so already with regard to adopted measures, such as the directive establishing minimum standards for temporary protection or where a general approach has been agreed, as is presently the case for the reception conditions directive.
In addition, we co-operate with other member states in procedural terms in order to implement the Dublin Convention to determine the state responsible for examining an application for asylum. Although unable to accede to the Dublin Convention such co-operation has also extended to Norway and Iceland since 1 April 2001, as a result of a separate agreement between those countries and the European Union member states to apply the Dublin Convention criteria.
Alistair Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what his estimate is of the proportion of asylum claimants who lose contact with his Department; what research this estimate is based upon; and if he will make a statement. 
Beverley Hughes: I regret that the information requested is not available and no such estimate has been made. Asylum applicants do not always inform the Immigration Service prior to leaving the United Kingdom. We are making improvements in the area of contact management as detailed in the current Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Bill.
15 Jul 2002 : Column 92W
This states that those in the proposed accommodation centres may be required to report on a daily basis within the accommodation centre. We will seek to maintain contact with those asylum seekers who are dispersed. Those who do not require National Asylum Support Service (NASS) accommodation will also be required to report at the NASS address, at reporting centres or at police stations attended by staff from the Immigration and Nationality Directorate. During the induction process asylum seekers will be advised of their obligations to notify any change of address and to report as required. Provision of support will be made conditional on asylum seekers reporting as required.
Alistair Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the conclusions of the research paper published by South Bank university in June on "Maintaining Contact: What Happens after Detained Asylum Seekers get Bail". 
Beverley Hughes: We welcome the contribution the research conducted by South Bank university makes to the on-going debate about the use of immigration detention powers. We are aware of its conclusions and currently studying the whole report.
We are making improvements in the area of contact management as detailed in the current Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Bill. This states that those in the proposed accommodation centres may be required to report on a daily basis within the accommodation centre. We will seek to maintain contact with those asylum seekers who are dispersed. Those who do not require National Asylum Support Service (NASS) accommodation will also be required to report at the NASS address, at reporting centres or at police stations attended by staff from the Immigration and Nationality Directorate. During the induction process asylum seekers will be advised of their obligations to notify any change of address and to report as required. Provision of support will be made conditional on asylum seekers reporting as required.
Alistair Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of asylum seekers detained and subsequently released on bail lost contact with his Department's authorities in the last 12 months for which figures are available. 
Mr. Malins: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 22 November, Official Report, column 444W, on asylum seekers, when the study was commissioned; and if he will publish its conclusions. 
Beverley Hughes: A study to review methods used in different countries to attempt to estimate the size of their illegally resident populations was commissioned by the Home Office in January of this year. This work will assess the applicability of those methods to the United Kingdom context. The study is still on-going and will be published later this year.
15 Jul 2002 : Column 93W
85 per cent. the percentage of appealed asylum decisions applied by the Immigration Appellate Authority at Adjudicator level. 
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|