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Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, if he will make a statement to the House on the Government's policy towards the provision of school crossing patrolmen/women at primary schools in Northern Ireland. 
Angela E. Smith: The Government recognise the important contribution that these patrols make to ensure the safety of children walking to and from school, although there is no statutory requirement to provide crossing patrols at or near schools.
The Department of Education has made clear to education and library boards the need to have clear criteria for the provision of crossing patrols that ensure that patrols are provided where there are safety issues. In response, boards have agreed to operate within the Local Authority Road Safety Officers Association (LARSOA) guidelines. These guidelines provide an objective, risk-based framework for assessing the need for crossing patrols, taking into account factors such as the volume of traffic, road width, availability of footpaths and provision of other crossing aids such as footbridges or pelican crossings. Where the guidelines demonstrate particular hazards or risks, crossing patrols are normally provided.
Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, whether an education board is obliged to immediately replace a retiring school crossing patrolman/woman with a new patrolman/woman whenever real risk to the safety of school children attending school is assessed to exist. 
Angela E. Smith: When an education and library board is aware that a crossing patrolperson is going to retire/resign, it will carry out an assessment of need to determine if the patrol point still meets the eligibility criteria relating to the identification of hazards and assessing risks as determined in a framework based on the Local Authority Road Safety Officers' Association (LARSOA) guidelines. If the patrol point does not meet the criteria a board will not replace the retiring patrolperson. However, if the patrol point still meets the criteria a board will then take action to recruit a new crossing patrolperson.
Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what obligations school nurses in Northern Ireland are under to inform parents when they are approached by a 13-year-old schoolgirl seeking contraceptive treatment. 
Mr. Woodward: All nurses, including school nurses, are bound by their code of professional conduct which, among other things, requires them to observe the duty of confidentiality to all persons seeking advice or treatment including those under 16 years. The code of professional conduct sets out clear guidance on occasions where confidentiality may be breached, for example, for child protection purposes.
Mr. Woodward: All the main religious groups were consulted on the draft Sexual Health Promotion Strategy and Action Plan and detailed responses were received from them. In addition further consultations took place in June 2005 between officials and representatives of both the Catholic Church's Family Ministry Commission and CARE, a mainstream Christian movement.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment he has made of theimplications of the recent announcement by the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission that the freedom to work in a smoke-free environment is a human rights issue; and if he will make a statement. 
On 17 October 2005 the Department announced that it would introduce comprehensive controls on smoking in all enclosed public places and workplaces, including pubs and bars. A key factor in the decision was the need to protect the public and employees from the dangers of exposure to second hand smoke. It is the intention that the legislation will come into force before the summer of 2007.
17 Oct 2005 : Column 754W
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You recently asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland three Parliamentary Questions: how many 20 mph residential zones are planned in Northern Ireland, and what the locations are of the planned zones; how many 20 mph residential zones there are in Northern Ireland, and if he will list the location of all current 20 mph residential zones within Northern Ireland". I have been asked to reply as these issues fall within my responsibility as Chief Executive of Roads Service.
By way of information, I should explain that 20-mph zones are a form of traffic calming and are generally implemented in residential areas where an extensive network of streets is involved and self-enforcing measures can be provided to reduce vehicle speeds to approximately 20-mph. Whenever speeds have been reduced to this, it is then possible to introduce a mandatory 20-mph limit. If the level of traffic calming measures are insufficient to reduce speeds to around 20-mph, then it is not possible to introduce a 20-mph mandatory limit.
In addition Roads Service has plans to implement a further eight 20mph residential zones in the following locations, subject to them clearing the necessary statutory procedures and the availability of funding:
I should also advise that Roads Service has implemented one non-mandatory advisory" 20-mph zone in Earhart Park, Londonderry, and has plans for a further three advisory 20-mph zones in Westlake and Duncastle Park, Londonderry and in Collinbridge area, Newtownabbey. The primary aim of these advisory 20-mph zones is to test the effectiveness of signing alone without the accompanying self enforcing engineering measures.
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