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29 Apr 2003 : Column 353W—continued

Community Support Officers

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what evaluation he has commissioned into the use of community support officers. [109523]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: As a condition of their funding each of the 27 forces who currently have community support officers (CSOs) are required to provide an annual evaluation of their effectiveness to the Home Office.

In addition the six forces who are piloting the use of detention powers by CSOs are subject to a separate evaluation by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary.


Mr. Kaufman: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he intends to reply to the letter to him dated 27 February from the right hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton with regard to Mr. Amanat Ullah; [107826]

Mr. Blunkett: I wrote to my right hon. Friend on 16 April 2003.

Criminal Justice Bill

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his Answer to the hon. Member for Cardiff, West (Kevin Brennan) of 18 March 2003, Official Report, column 702W, on the Criminal Justice Bill, how many children and young people under the age of 18 are serving detention for life under section 91 of the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000. [109596]

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Hilary Benn: On 28 February 2003, 43 young people under the age of 18 were in custody serving sentences of detention for life under section 91 of the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000.


Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what percentage of recorded crime in the Hemsworth constituency was drug-related in (a) 2000, (b) 2001 and (c) 2002. [109903]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Recorded crime figures include statistics on drugs offences, such as possession, and on acquisitive crimes, such as burglary, but do not record whether the latter are related to an offender's drug habits.

However, the New English and Welsh Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring (NEW-ADAM) research programme, which involves interviewing and drug testing those arrested by the police, confirms a link between drug misuse and crime, although the conclusions do not relate specifically to Hemsworth. Analysis of the data from the first eight sites in the survey, collected during 1999–2000, shows that 65 per cent. of arrestees provided a urine sample that tested positive for one or more illegal drug. The analysis also shows that up to 29 per cent. of arrestees tested positive for opiates (including heroin) and/or cocaine (including crack).

As a guide to the proportion of crime that is drug-related, analysis of the NEW-ADAM self-report data indicates that while only 21 per cent. of non-drug using arrestees reported having previously offended in the past 12 months, this figure rises to 75 per cent. for those arrestees who use heroin and/or cocaine/crack. Moreover, while users of both heroin and cocaine/crack represented just under one quarter of all arrestees interviewed, they were responsible for more than three fifths of all the illegal income reported.

In support of this, 55 per cent. of arrestees who reported using one or more drugs in the last 12 months and committing one or more acquisitive crimes, acknowledged a link between their drug use and their offending behaviour. This proportion rose to 78 per cent. for arrestees who said they had used heroin and cocaine/crack.

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of the drug offences recorded by the police in the 12 months to December 2002 were offences of (a) possession and (b) trafficking. [109562]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Eighty-five per cent. of drug offences recorded by the police in the 12 months to December 2002 were recorded as drug possession, compared to 15 per cent. recorded as trafficking. Other types of drug offences accounted for less than 1 per cent.

Mr. Grogan: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) when tranquilliser drugs known as benzodiazepines were first classified; and if he will make a statement; [109034]

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Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Substances known as benzodiazepines have been controlled as Class C drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 since 1 April 1986. They have legitimate uses as medicines and are regulated under Schedule 4 Part 1 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, with the exception of temazepam and flunitrazepam which are regulated under Schedule 3. On 1 February 2002, the benzodiazepines under Schedule 4 Part 1 were made subject to full import, export and possession controls (temazepam and flunitrazepam were already subject to such controls).

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs keeps the classification and scheduling of all controlled drugs under regular review. Under the 1971 Act, the Home Secretary must consult with the Council before making changes to the control of individual drugs.

If any organisation or individual believes that benzodiazepines might be inappropriately classified or scheduled, they are encouraged to make submissions to the Home Office. These would be carefully considered and, if found to represent a credible case, would be referred to the Advisory Council.

External Reports

Mr. Maude: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list (a) the title and subject, (b) the total cost to his Department and (c) the commissioned author or organisation of each external report commissioned by his Department in each year since 1997. [103718]

Hilary Benn: We estimate that the total cost of external research commissioned by the Research, Development and Statistics Directorate between 1997–98 and 2001–02 (the latest year for which figures were available) was £39.3 million. In addition, the estimated total cost of other external reports included in the table was £6.7million.

For this purpose, external reports are those that are produced at the request of the Department by a person, group or organisation external to the Department, and which are publicly available.

(1) Research, Development and Statistics

The Home Office commissions a wide range of research activities that support the development of information-led policy. All research reports published by the Home Office Research, Development and Statistics Directorate since 1997 are available in the House of Commons Library. Some of these publications have input from external authors as well as Home Office officials, and each publication identifies and credits the authorship of the publication. The latest list of RDS publications since 1997 has been placed in the Library.

(2) Community Policy

Public perceptions of identity/entitlement cards qualitative research, November 2002, Cragg Ross;

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Omnibus Identity/entitlement card attitudinal research in Great Britain, December 2002, RSGB;

Omnibus identity/entitlement card attitudinal research in the United Kingdom, February 2003, RSGB;

Black and Minority Ethnic Group identity/entitlement card attitudinal research, March 2003, Taylor Nelson Sofres; and

Independent Review of Coroners Services. Due for completion by Easter 2003. A date for publication is still to be confirmed.

(3) Corporate Development and Services Group

Models of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender staff networks. A Report for the Home Office Human Resources Equality Unit. Prepared by Stonewall, April 2002.

(4) Police Resources Unit

Police Standards Unit has produced one report that is publicly available, but it was written internally (on Parking Priority Areas) and they have commissioned one external report, but it is not publicly available (only to a police audience—on Streetcrime);

The Impact of Population Sparsity on the Cost of provision of Police Services from ORH, 1998;

Police Costs and Population Characteristics—PA Consulting, 1999;

Change Proposals to Increase the Presence of Police in Communities, Policing Bureaucracy Taskforce, chaired by Sir David O'Dowd, 17 September 2002;

Distraction burglary among older adults and ethnic minority communities: to be published shortly—Salford Mental Health Services and Studio III Clinical Services; and

PSDB publish a wide range of specialist scientific reports. Where these do not bear a national security classification, they are placed on the PSDB website, and those of more general interest, have been placed in the House of Commons Library. They sometimes contain data commissioned from external scientific laboratories.

(5) Youth Justice Board (since 1999)

Mental Health need and offending in adolescents leaving secure care, University of Manchester;

Reducing Street Crime—Enterprise LSE Ltd;

Assessment of AIM Initiative—University of Birmingham;

Mapping and Exploring Services for young people who sexually abuse, University of Durham;

Custodial regimes Policy Research Bureau;

Detention and Training Order Outcomes Policy Research Bureau;

Ethnic minorities—University of Oxford;

Youth Offending Team Structures, Morgan Harris and Burrows;

Appropriate Adults—Surrey University;

Learning Styles—Nottingham/Oxford University;

Smart Thinking Programme Citizenship Foundation;

Restorative Justice Approaches with Looked After Children—Hertfordshire University;

Brinsford Young Offenders Institute Restorative Justice programme—De Montfort University;

Oxford University Reconviction Study;

Reconviction Study—Institute of Education;

Reconviction Study—Policy Research Bureau;

Reconviction Study—Essex University;

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Reconviction Study—Surrey University;

Reconviction Study—Sheffield University;

Continuity of mental health provision for custody to the community, University of Manchester;

Differential sentencing—NACRO;

Extension study restorative justice in schools evaluation, Oxford/Partners in evaluation;

Youth Survey—MORI;

Bail Supervision and Support Evaluation—NACRO Cymru;

Referral Orders—CGEY;

Drug research—Galahad Substance Misuse Solutions Ltd;

Extended ASSET research—Oxford University;

Detention and Training Orders—PA Consulting Evaluation of short term;

Review of police and social services data—Social Information Systems;

Retrospective study on pyos—NACRO;

Comparison of Secure Training Centres, Local Authority Secure Units and Young Offenders Institutes—NACRO;

Restorative Justice in schools—PiE;

Reengagement with education—Ecotec;

Review of sentencing decisions—Policy Research Bureau;

Health/education workers—NACRO;

Reconviction Study across secure estat—NACRO;

Multi systematic therapy—University of Manchester;

Schools Omnibus—Mori;

Training in European funding opportunities—EISS (University of Kent);

Final Warning Research—Social Information Systems;

Asset Research—University of Oxford;

Detention and Training Order Research Policy—Research Bureau /NACRO;

Focus Groups—Mori;

Smart Thinking Programme—The Citizenship Foundation;

London Street Crime Scoping Exercise—Marion Fitzgerald;

Be Your Best—Be your Best Rock Challenge;

Old Street Magistrates Court—Community Advice Project;

Software system—Viewpoint Organisation;

Development of Youth Offending Team Victim policies—NACRO;

Restorative Justice pilot project—Oxford/Partners in evaluation;

Housing Survey—CGEY;

Multi systematic therapy—University of Manchester;

Interventions supporting final warnings, Sheffield University;

Evaluation of board funded Restorative Justice and CB programmes, Oxford University;

Evaluation of board funded parenting programmes—Policy Research Bureau;

Evaluation of board funded drug and alcohol programmes—Essex University;

Evaluation of board funded mentoring programmes—Surrey University;

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Evaluation of board funded education employment programmes—Institute of Education; and

Victim Assessment tool—NACRO.

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