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Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what account he takes of determinations by the Immigration Appeals Tribunal that a case has no merit when he is required to reconsider that case on grounds wider than those on which the Tribunal has considered it. 
Mr. McNulty: The Government take very seriously the abuse and exploitation of migrant workers. Our strategy for dealing with this problem includes tackling human trafficking as a priority for our presidency of the European Union, strengthening the legislative framework, improving the security of administrative processes governing the entry of migrant workers, increasing enforcement action, and developing closer working between departments responsible for enforcing workplace regulations. We have introduced a new criminal offence of trafficking for the purpose of exploitation, including forced labour, punishable on conviction by a maximum of 14 years' imprisonment. We supported the legislation establishing the Gangmaster Licensing Authority, which will tackle illegal employment practices in the agricultural labour provision sector through statutory licensing. We will also introduce on the spot penalties for employers found to be using illegal migrant workers.
The current work permit arrangements include checks to ensure work permit applicants are protected from potentially exploitative employment arrangements, and investigations are carried out where there is intelligence of abuse. We are also improving joint working across departmental boundaries. The Home Office is a key participant in Reflex, the multi-agency initiative created to tackle organised immigration crime, including people smuggling and human trafficking. We will also pilot a joint team in the West Midlands to examine the scope for closer co-operation between workplace enforcement agencies in relation to the use and exploitation of illegal migrant workers.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the user organisations for online identity inquiries with which his Department is having discussions; and if he will list (a) other potential users and (b) the locations where he envisages online inquiry facilities (i) with and (ii) without the ability to check a person's biometric data which will be available (A) for Government use and (B) for use by other organisations. 
Mr. McNulty: Identity cards will provide a convenient and secure way for individuals to prove their identity and, with their consent, for identity verification checks to be made by a range of potential public and private sector users. The Identity Cards Programme Team have had discussions with a number of public sector organisations including: Cabinet Office, Department for Constitutional Affairs, Department for Education and Skills, Department of Transport, Department of Health, DVLA, Department for Work and Pensions, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs, Her Majesty's Treasury, Immigration and Nationality Directorate, Criminal Records Bureau, Local Government Association, Northern Ireland Office, Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, Office for National Statistics, E-Government Unit, Association of Chief Police Officers, Scottish Executive, National Assembly for Wales and United Kingdom Passport Service. The Identity Cards Programme Team has also briefed representatives from the private sector including the banking, utilities, aviation and retail sectors.
In all cases, verification checks of cards will not give access to the contents of the database or the details of the biometric. They will simply confirm identity and other relevant details, for example to confirm whether a foreign national is free to take employment.
Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many groups (a) were nominated for and (b) received The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service; and how many represented ethnic minority groups in each case. 
Paul Goggins: 617 groups were nominated for The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service 2005, of which 580 were eligible. 92 groups received The Queen's Award. 44 of the eligible nominations represented ethnic minority groups and 11 of those received The Queen's Award.
Anne Snelgrove: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people with serious criminal records have been granted a licence by the Security Industry Authority once the five-year period has elapsed after the date of their last offence. 
The latest available information on the number of traffic wardens employed by police authorities in the East Midlands is in the following table. The table does not include parking attendants employed by local authorities to enforce non-criminal parking infringements.
9 Jun 2005 : Column 660W
|Total strength (Q)(full-time equivalent)||Total strength (Q(head count)|
Kate Hoey: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the procedure by which Parliament will assess whether EU legislation complies with the subsidiarity principle. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The Government believe that it is for the two Houses to decide what parliamentary procedures would be most effective to implement the subsidiarity early warning mechanism as envisaged in the new constitutional treaty. The Government are aware that the House of Lords European Union Committee has produced a report on the subsidiarity early warning mechanism, for which the Foreign Secretary provided a memorandum on 3 November 2004, and the Select Committee on the Modernisation of the House of Commons and the European Scrutiny Committee have also considered this issue. The Government hope that cooperation between the two Houses on working out an effective procedure for the subsidiarity mechanism, in consultation with the devolved legislatures as appropriate, will continue.
Kate Hoey: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what the budget allocation for the presidency unit is for 200506, broken down by (a) activity and (b) budget line; 
(2) what the estimated spending on official meetings from the budget for UK presidency of the EU is, including the Gymnich and European Councils. 
|Official meetings (including the Gymnich at £1.1 million and two European Councils totalling £2 million)||£5.08 million|
|Administration (including human resources and training)||£2.726 million|
|Official presidency website (including translation costs)||£200,000|
|Public information and communication||£250,000|
|Capital costs (including capital charges)||£182,000|
Kate Hoey: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the estimated spending on the UK presidency of the EU is, broken down by activity; and how much has been spent to date. 
|Official meetings (including the Gymnich and European Councils)||£5.91 million|
|Administration (including human resources and training)||£3.85 million|
|Official presidency website||£388,000|
|Public information and communication||£350,000|
|Total provisional budget||£10.56 million|
Mr. Douglas Alexander [holding answer 6 June 2005]: Europe is facing a series of challenges: emerging competition in global markets; new threats to our security; climate change and inequality between rich and poor. The Government's priorities for the UK presidency will focus on:
economic reform, as my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer set out in his written statement to the House on 26 May, we will aim to help equip Europe to meet the global economic challenge by pushing forward the Better Regulation agenda, the Lisbon agenda and moving forward the post Financial Services Action Plan agenda, Official Report, columns 2324WS;
climate change, where we will co-ordinate EU strategy for the Montreal UN Climate Change conference; encourage technology to reduce emissions; begin work on developing consensus on the need to tackle aviation emissions in an economically efficient way and step up dialogue with China and India;
Africa, where we will take forward work on a higher EU aid target and the UN Millennium Summit; build on the Commission for Africa Report; and press at the Hong Kong World Trade Organisation ministerial meeting in December for better market access for the developing world.
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