|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
20 Jan 2004 : Column 1224Wcontinued
Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people aged over 65 years are serving sentences in England and Wales; and what provisions are being made to meet their health, social and rehabilitation needs. 
20 Jan 2004 : Column 1225W
The Prison Service does recognise its duty to care for older prisoners and seeks to meet all their needs, including medical, according to individual circumstances. The Service does not allocate specific resources to the rehabilitation of older prisoners but rather through a system of sentence planning for all prisoners it ensures that they undertake activities necessary to reduce the risk to the public on release as well as providing any necessary resettlement support.
|Hollesley Bay/Warren Hill||14|
Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what percentage of (a) the prison population and (b) young offenders had previously been in local authority care in each of the last five years. 
Tom Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how long the longest-serving (a) male and (b) female prison inmate has been held in prison; and for what offence they were convicted when they were originally sentenced to imprisonment. 
Paul Goggins: The longest serving male prison inmate was received into custody 51 years ago and was convicted of murder. The longest serving female prison inmate was received into custody 22 years ago and was convicted of kidnapping.
20 Jan 2004 : Column 1226W
Mr. Stinchcombe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prisoners in HM prisons in England and Wales are sharing (a) two to a cell designated for one and (b) three to a cell designated for two. 
Mrs. Gillan: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list all (a) private and (b) voluntary providers of services to the Prison Service, together with the services they provide to each prison. 
Paul Goggins: The information requested is not available and can be provided only at disproportionate cost. At the present time there are around 20,000 organisationsvoluntary, public and privateproviding goods and services to the Prison Service.
Mr. Simon Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the visiting hours and days were for each prison in April in each year since 1997; and what the visiting hours and days will be for each prison in April 2004. 
Paul Goggins: Prisoners' minimum entitlements to visits, in terms of regularity and length are prescribed centrally. The arrangements for both social and official visits are, however, determined locally by individual governors, taking into account operational matters and resources. Data on these arrangements are not centrally collated and to do so would be at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Heyes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what action he is taking to increase the opportunities for prisoners to find employment once released back into the community. 
Paul Goggins: [holding answer 19 January 2004]: The Government are investing £14.5 million a year in the Prison Service Custody to Work initiative. This is linked to a target of 31,500 job, training or education outcomes for prisoners on release in 200304. The Prison Service is increasing skills training and jobsearch training and support for prisoners, developing closer partnerships with employers and Jobcentre Plus, and providing more housing advice and support services for prisoners.
Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he is taking to reduce re-offending by (a) involving families in resettlement work throughout the prison sentence and (b) maintaining prisoners' family ties. 
20 Jan 2004 : Column 1227W
Paul Goggins: The Prison Service acknowledges that family and other community links are vital to effective resettlement of prisoners, and that families have a valuable role to play in helping to reduce re-offending and protect the public.
With regard to offenders under the age of 18, and all those sentenced to the detention and training order, there is a mandatory requirement on governors to ensure that, where appropriate, families are given the opportunity to contribute to the sentence planning process throughout the custodial part of the sentence. For adult prisoners the extent of involvement is left to the discretion of individual establishments.
The Prison Service has been working, together with other agencies, to develop an integrated approach to supporting prisoners and their families in sustaining their relationships. Examples of such work include:
Establishment of a seven-year partnership with voluntary and statutory agencies in the Eastern Area offering a comprehensive package of services and support to the families of prisoners within prisons and in the wider community.
Providing information to prisoners to enable them to maintain family links and giving advice to families about prisons and the opportunities for keeping in touch.
Enabling prisoners' families to maintain ties through improved visiting conditions, such as extended family visits; play areas and story tapes for children recorded by the imprisoned parent; and increasing the number of visitors' centres which offer additional support.
Development of family learning programmes, some of which include attendance by partners and children.
Refocusing of the multi-agency Family Ties Consultative Group to enhance policy development in this area.
Continuing to offer financial assistance for families on low incomes visiting prisoners through the Assisted Prisons Visits scheme.
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on his Department's procurement policy with regard to offshore IT and call centre outsourcing; whether his Department is outsourcing IT and call centre jobs to offshore companies; to which countries his Department has outsourced these jobs; how much his Department has spent on this outsourcing in each of the last two years; and how much has been budgeted for this purpose for the next two years. 
Fiona Mactaggart: The Home Office procurement policy follows standard Government procurement policy that all public procurement is based on value for money, having due regard to propriety, security of information and regularity. The Home Office comply with the requirements of the EU Treaty, including the principal of non-discrimination, the EC procurement
20 Jan 2004 : Column 1228W
directives and the UK's international obligations. This procurement policy applies to offshore IT and call centre outsourcing.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|