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Mr. Prentice: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will make it her policy for all legislation for which her Department has responsibility to be available online. 
Harriet Harman: It is my Department's policy to make all relevant information available via its website as a matter of course unless that information should more correctly be published elsewhere online. For example, Acts of Parliament are published by HMSO. In these latter cases, my Department's policy is to provide links from its website to the information.
Harriet Harman: We estimate that the cost to the consolidated fund of administering the 2005 general election in England and Wales will be approximately £71 million. Of this, £43 million will cover the costs of returning officers and £28 million will cover the costs of the delivery of candidates' election communications.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will make a statement on the Government's policy on the accession of the EU to the Hague Conference on International Private Law. 
The Government supports the application by the European Community to become a full member of the Hague Conference on Private International Law. This reflects the increasing amount of Community law in this field and the need to ensure that the Community continues to play a full and constructive role in the work of the Conference. The United Kingdom's support for this application is consistent with our support for the Conference and the valuable work which it undertakes. There have already been encouraging negotiations on this matter in the Hague; these will be resumed at a further meeting in June at which the Government hopes that they will be successfully concluded.
25 May 2005 : Column 142W
Mr. Allen: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will take steps to ensure that hon. Members can receive an electronic copy of the marked electoral register for their constituency. 
Harriet Harman: Access to the marked electoral registers is the responsibility of the Clerk of the Crown. The marked register which is made available for inspection or copying is the paper copy of the register kept at the polling station, and marked by polling station staff. No electronic copies are compiled, and we have no current plans to provide for it. Paper copies may be purchased, as has been the case in previous elections.
Mr. Prentice: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will bring forward legislative proposals to make it an offence for candidates for parliamentary elections to use children in their election addresses where the children are shown wearing uniforms of schools they do not attend and where the school in question has not given permission. 
Harriet Harman: The Government have no plans to introduce legislation covering these specific circumstances. Section 91 of the Representation of the People Act 1983, currently provides that material used in election addresses should relate to the election only. The Government believe that the Representation of the People Act 1983, along with the existing laws governing publications and copyright already cover possible complaints about the contents of election addresses. As a matter of principle, the Government do not believe that it would be appropriate to prescribe too closely what candidates may or may not include in their election communications.
Harriet Harman: A ticketing system is not operated for Queen's Bench Division Judges of the High Court who try rape, but any Queen's Bench Division Judge who does so is required to have attended the Serious Sexual Offences Seminar (SSOS) run by the Judicial Studies Board before they can sit on such cases.
Vera Baird: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what criteria are applied to the decision on whether to ticket a judge to try rape; and who applies them in an individual case. 
Harriet Harman: The authorisation of individual circuit judges to try rape and other serious sexual offences is made by the senior presiding judge on behalf of the Lord Chief Justice. Such judges are identified by the presiding judges of each circuit. Before being authorised a judge must have wide and significant experience of the criminal justice system, and must have demonstrated the necessary sensitivity for these cases. Specialist training is provided for each authorised judge by the Judicial Studies Board and it is a condition that the judge must attend before he can sit on such cases.
Vera Baird: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many of the judges who sit on criminal cases in the Court of Appeal Criminal Division had previously been ticketed to try rape trials. 
Harriet Harman: All circuit judges who now sit in the Court of Appeal Criminal Division (CACD) are authorised to try rape. High Court Judges who sit in the CACD do not need to be ticketed to hear rape appeals. In relation to this point I would refer the hon. Member for Redcar to my answer to the earlier question from the hon. Member. Some of the Lords Justices who currently sit in the CACD will also have attended the Serious Sexual Offences Seminar (SSOS) whilst they were High Court Judges because it would have been compulsory for them to do so. It is unlikely that any constitution of the CACD that considers a rape appeal would not include at least one member who has attended the SSOS.
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