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Mr. Clapham: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many days of sick leave were taken by the (a) police force, (b) fire service and (c) prison service in the last year for which records are available; and what the cost was. 
|Number of days sick leave taken||Estimated cost £ million|
|Police support staff||746,928||(38)106|
(37) The average daily cost of a police officer is £185.
(38) The average daily cost of a member of support staff is £142.
(39) Responsibility for the fire service rests with the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.
(40) This is based on 45 out of the 50 brigades providing full information.
(41) Not available.
(42) The prison service figure is calculating using a daily costing of £110 for all staff.
23 Jul 2002 : Column 1054W
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent representations he has received regarding the progress of the investigatory branch CIB3 in investigating alleged misdemeanours. 
Mr. Denham: I received representations on alleged malpractice in corruption investigations by the Anti- Corruption Unit of the Metropolitan Police Service's Directorate of Professional Standards (formerly CIB3) from my noble Friend (Lord Graham) of Edmonton, five hon. Members and a solicitor at a meeting on 20 March 2002. I received a dossier of written material from my noble Friend Lord Graham on 30 April. I have also received nine other pieces of correspondence on related issues.
The definitions of deaths in police custody or otherwise with the police were revised in 1996 to make them clearer, and to distinguish between deaths of those in police detention and other deaths involving the police. This resulted in a broader range of deaths being reported, for example people who died while attempting to evade arrest in vehicles. This has resulted in an increase in the published figures.
The increased figure for 199596 reflected the change to collecting the figures on a financial year basis rather than on a calendar year basis and were collected over a 15 month period (1 January 1995 to 31 March 1996).
Much has been done in recent years by the police, the Home Office and the Police Complaints Authority (PCA) to identify the main factors responsible for deaths in custody and to consider how the position can be improved. Police forces in England and Wales are taking a range of actions to reduce such deaths. These include safer custody facilities, improved training, Close Circuit Television (CCTV) monitoring and an emphasis on better care, assessment and monitoring of detainees.
23 Jul 2002 : Column 1055W
We are particularly keen to improve liaison with employers. Later this year, my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Home Secretary will publish a joint discussion paper on fiscal and other changes we can make to promote community service, including service as a special constable. A new headline role for specials has been published, focusing on intelligence-led patrolling and crime reduction initiatives. A new foundation training package for specials was issued in June and revised conditions of service regulations and new conduct regulations are being prepared.
Central to this process will be Home Office/the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) good practice guidance covering all aspects of the recruitment, management and deployment of specials, which will be issued by the end of the year. We have also set aside £300,000 to help "specials champions" forces drive forward initiatives to improve the recruitment and retention of specials. I have asked deputy chief constable Peter Fahy of Surrey police to help with this.
Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when Ministers in his Department have held meetings with Ministers and officials of the Irish Government since 1 June 2000; when and where each meeting took place; which Ministers were involved in each meeting; which Irish Government departments were involved in each meeting; and which Ministers and officials from the Irish Government attended each meeting. 
Andrew Selous: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what funds allocated by (a) his Department and (b) its executive agencies are ring-fenced for specific purposes; and if he will list the allocations of funds involved. 
Mr. Blunkett [holding answer 18 December 2001]: I regret the delay in responding to this question. Ring-fenced expenditure for the Home Office and Prison Service Agency for financial year 200102 is detailed in the table:
|Crime Fighting Fund||159,000|
|Capital Modernisation Fund (CMF)||207,900|
|Invest to Save||30,897|
|Non CMF DNA||46,000|
|Crime Research Programme||110,900|
|Confiscated Assets Fund||6,000|
|Criminal Justice System||100,000|
|Active Communities Project||10,900|
|Central Service Modernisation||2,025|
|Youth Justice Board Operating Costs||10,386|
|Youth Justice Board bail support||10,000|
|Police Loan Charges grants||14,200|
|Probation Loan Charges grants||2,597|
|Superannuation of seconded police||1,081|
|Prison Service Agency|
|Capital Modernisation Fund||35,470|
|Invest to Save||1,340|
|Invest to Modernise||2,740|
23 Jul 2002 : Column 1056W
Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many crimes resulted in a conviction as a proportion of total recorded crime in each of the last three years; and if he will make a statement. 
|Convictions for notifiable offences||755,705||756,629||705,450|
|Convictions as a percentage of recorded crime||14.8||14.3||13.6|
1. A crime may involve more than one offender.
2. Each notifiable offence for which an individual was convicted is counted.
3. Some convictions will relate to crimes recorded in earlier years.
Recorded Crime Statistical Bulletin, Home Office, 12/01
Home Office Court Proceedings Database
Mr. Robathan: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether businesses that have lost money as a direct result of the failure of the Criminal Records Bureau to meet its published service standards will be entitled to compensation. 
Hilary Benn: Part V of the Police Act 1997 imposes no time frame for the issue of disclosures and the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) has no liability in contract or tort for taking time to process applications. The CRB has sought advice about the circumstances in which it is suitable to consider paying, or declining to pay, WW compensation.
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