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Prisons (Drug Addicts)

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for (1) the Home Department what steps he is taking to segregate non drug addicts from drug addicts in prisons. [75466]

Hilary Benn: Specific reconviction figures are not collected for first time prisoners. The Prison Service has been set a target to reduce the rate of reconvictions of all released prisoners by five per cent. compared to the predicted rate by 2004. To meet this target the Prison Service draws on 'What Works' research to provide regimes which are effective in tackling offending behaviour and the factors which contribute towards re-offending.

There is no evidence to suggest that segregating prisoners leads to a reduction in recidivism or overall drug use. There are no statistics available on which to base an estimate of the numbers of prisoners who adopt a drug habit whilst in prison; drug taking by its nature is a covert activity.

Voluntary drug testing programmes are available for prisoners who wish to make a commitment to remain drug free. Ninety prisons currently have voluntary drug testing units in operation. These do not provide segregation but they do provide a degree of separation from prisoners not making a formal commitment to remain drug free.

Drug Dealers

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if he will commit more resources to police forces in order to combat drug dealers who target the young operating in housing estates and outside schools. [69350]

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Mr. Denham: The Government are committed to working to protect the young from any dealers who target them.

Police authorities also participate in the Government's wider drugs' strategy. Over the three years from 2001–02 to 2003–04, the Home Office has made available #220 million for the Communities Against Drugs (CAD) programme. This scheme provides for Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships and Drugs Action Teams (DATs) to build a stronger community links and helps local communities tackle neighbourhood drugs problems and associated crime.

The communities themselves allocate the money to local projects reflecting their priorities in the fight against drugs, through education/support programmes, diversionary schemes and the disruption of the local drugs supply market. Police are involved in the partnership activities and receive financial support from the CAD programme.

Drug Treatment and Testing Orders

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many drug treatment and testing orders have been issued in (a) Hampshire and (b) the Portsmouth, South constituency; and if he will make a statement. [76526]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The drug treatment and testing order (DTTO) was introduced under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and rolled out to courts in England and Wales on 1 October 2000, after successfully being piloted. Between 1 April 2001 and 31 July 2002, 192 DTTOs were made in Hampshire, of which 47 orders were made in Portsmouth (including Portsmouth, Fareham and Havant).

DTTO figures for individual constituencies are not available.

Drug-related Crimes

Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) racially motivated, (b) violent, (c) street and (d) drug-related crimes were reported in (i) Lancashire and (ii) the North-West of England in the last 12 months. [73885]

Mr. Denham: Numbers of reported crimes are not collected centrally. Numbers of crimes recorded by the police in the year ending March 2002 are given in the table. As some of the forces in the North West, including Lancashire, implemented the principles of the National Crime Recording Standard in advance of its national implementation in April 2002, the given figures cannot be directly compared with those for previous years.

The crime categories for which racially aggravated crimes are recorded separately are harassment, other wounding, common assault and criminal damage. The total numbers of these racially aggravated crimes are given in the table.

Violent crime is comprised of the offence groups of violence against the person, sexual offences and robbery.

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'Street crime' is not a separate category in recorded crime figures, which are based on legal definitions. Figures are given for robberies of personal property

Recorded crime figures do not contain details of whether offences are related to offenders' drug habits. Figures for offences specifically related to drugs themselves, including for example trafficking and possession of drugs, are given.

Recorded crimes in the year ending March 2002

LancashireNorth West Government Region
Racially aggravated offences1,057 4,746
Violent crimes 18,535 106,892
Robbery of personal property1,437 13,656
Drug offences3,169 14,775

Drugs-related Deaths

Mr. Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what guidance he gives to coroners' courts on recording deaths as drugs-related. [75331]

Hilary Benn: Coroners were advised about recommended verdicts in drugs-related deaths when these verdicts were first introduced in 1984. They have since been encouraged to report details for the National Programme on Substance Abuse Deaths, and have been informed of the action plan to prevent drugs-related deaths in the light of the recent report from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs. In order to improve surveillance and monitoring, we will provide new guidance for coroners by March 2003.

Dysfunctional Families

Mr. Challen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to support dysfunctional families. [75322]

Beverley Hughes: All families need help from time to time, which is why we have a wide range of policies to help all families bring up their children in the best possible way.

In addition, we have in place measures that support those most in need.


Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to tackle the misuse of fireworks. [75342]

Mr. Denham: We have been working closely with the Department of Trade and Industry to address the issue of fireworks safety and misuse, and to curb the problem of noise and nuisance they cause. My hon. Friend, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Trade and Industry (Melanie Johnson) launched this year's safety campaign on 15 October when she announced a range of measures, including proposals to ban air bombs.

We are encouraging trading standards officers, Health and Safety Executive and police forces to make full use of existing legislation. Throwing fireworks is one of the offences covered in the fixed penalty notice scheme being piloted in four police force areas. A

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monitoring scheme has also been set up with nine CDRPs to focus on best practice and identify clearly the number and scale of the problems caused.

Hampshire Constabulary

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police have left the Hampshire Constabulary in the last 12 months because of (a) retirement, (b) early retirement, (c) injury and (d) other employment; and if he will make a statement. [76503]

Mr. Denham: The precise information requested is not collected centrally. Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary has provided the figures set out in the table for the 12 months ending 31 March 2002.

Hampshire constabulary wastage 2001–2002

Dismissed or required to resign4
Voluntary resignations48
Medical retirements19
Ordinary retirements102
Died in service1
Total wastage234

Illegal Raves

Mr. Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent guidelines he has issued to chief constables on the control of illegal raves in England. [76121]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Guidance was issued to police on illegal raves in November 1994 and was contained in Home Office circular 45/94. This circular contained an introductory guide to provisions in the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994. We have made clear in the White Paper XJustice for All" (CM 5563) our intentions to supplement police powers to deal with nuisance caused with raves, and legislation will follow at the earliest opportunity: further guidance to the police will then be issued.

Immigration Service Removal Centres

Mr. Malins: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the net cost is in a full year of substituting contract and agency staff to undertake work in removal centres that previously was undertaken by detainees; from what budget the extra cost is taken; what proposals he has for giving financial incentives to detainees to assist in the running of removal centres; what factors he considered before deciding to prevent detainees from working; and if he will make a statement. [75422]

Beverley Hughes: Immigration detainees held in Immigration Service removal centres have never been required to work nor are they expected to assist in the running of the centres.

Following their redesignation earlier this year as removal centres, the prison service detention facilities at Dover, Haslar and Lindholme ceased to operate under Prison Rules. As a consequence, detainees no longer had

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the opportunity to undertake paid employment in the centres and the practice of relying on such work for the provision of certain ancillary services came to an end. Work formerly undertaken by detainees at these centres has been contracted out or transferred to agency staff. For this year this has resulted in a net additional cost of #1.09 million. This will be met from the Immigration and Nationality Directorate's budget.

Regimes in immigration removal centres provide detainees with a wide range of constructive activities based on education, crafts, physical education, religion and recreation. All activities are voluntary although detainees are encouraged to take part in them. Some centres provide a cash allowance, although not as an incentive to engage in activities, and we are considering standardising this and making it universal. While we are considering incentives and further ways to enhance activities available to detainees, we have no plans to require detainees to undertake paid work or to assist in the running of removal centres.

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