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Mr. Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the value of the cold weather payment for senior citizens was in the winter of 200304; and what it is for 200506. 
Mr. Plaskitt: The total value of cold weather payments in Great Britain for 200304 as reported in the Programme Accounting Computer System was £3.81 million. Of this £2.25 million was paid to those over pensionable age. As cold weather payments are dependent on the average temperature over a set period of time, the value of payments for 200506 cannot be forecast.
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people have claimed incapacity benefits in the Birkenhead area in each year since 1997. 
Mrs. McGuire: The information is in the table.
|As at February:||Number|
Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what his policy is on nursery and childcare support for employees of Jobcentre Plus. 
Margaret Hodge: The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the Chief Executive of Jobcentre Plus, Lesley Strathie. She will write to the hon. Member.
Letter from Lesley Strathie to Mr. Andrew Smith, dated 17 October 2005:
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question concerning his policy on nursery and childcare support for employees of Jobcentre Plus. This is something that falls within the responsibilities delegated to me as Chief Executive of Jobcentre Plus.
Jobcentre Plus currently provides nursery and childcare support in some locations where doing so has helped us address historical difficulties with staff recruitment or retention. The individual business cases behind these arrangements are kept under review.
In 2006, we will offer a 'salary sacrifice' scheme to all our employees. The salary sacrifice scheme is a Government initiative whereby the employee 'sacrifices' an amount of their salary (to a maximum of £50 per week) which is converted into childcare vouchers for them to use. National insurance contributions and tax are not deducted from the sacrificed amount, allowing the individual to benefit from the scheme.
More widely, Jobcentre Plus, as part of the Department for Work and Pensions, has policies which support flexible working and which enable our employees to balance their working lives with their caring responsibilities at home. These policies are well used31 % of our staff work on a part time basis, and the majority of them make use of flexible working hours. We also offer the facility for people to work during term time only, and will consider accommodating any flexible working pattern, providing that, in so doing, we are able to meet our responsibility to deliver our services to customers.
Sir Malcolm Rifkind: To ask the Secretary of State forWork and Pensions (1) what the total management costs of each outsourced Government employment programme have been in each year since their creation; 
(2) what the management costs of each outsourced Government employment programme has been as a percentage of total costs in each year since their creation. 
The information requested is not available.
17 Oct 2005 : Column 764W
Information on total expenditure on our employment programmes is in the latest departmental report, which is available in the Library.
Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what advice he has received from the Health and Safety Commission on sickness and absence among retail shop workers; what assessment the Commission has made of the extent to which threats and intimidation from customers play a part in the industry's sickness and absence record; and if he will make a statement. 
Mrs. McGuire: Information on the level of sickness caused by work-related violence among retail shop workers is not available.
Incidents of work-related violence which cause a physical injury, and where absence from work is for over three days, are reportable to the Health and Safety Executive and local authorities under the Reporting of Injuries, Dangerous Diseases and Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 1995. The number of incidents of work-related violence among shop workers reported under RIDDOR is set out as follows:
|Fatal injury||Non-fatal major injury||Over-3-day injury||All reported injuries|
The Health and Safety Commission (HSC) is firmly committed to tackling workplace violence, and believes that working in partnership and developing stronger links with stakeholders is the most effective way forward.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has been working closely with the Home Office to help reduce the incidence of work-related violence in the retail sector, primarily through HSE's stakeholder group, the Partnership on Work-Related Violence (POW-V). This group is targeting those sectors where there is most risk of violence to staff, including the retail sector, with a view to developing, promoting and sharing information and good practice in managing work-related violence, and making this information fully accessible.
Both HSE and the Home Office support USDAW's Freedom from Fear campaign which brings together employers, local authorities and the police to help promote the safety and well-being of shop workers.
Mr. Kemp: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many and what percentage of people in Houghton and Washington, East constituency were unemployed in each year since 1997; and what estimate he has made of changes in the amount paid in benefits due to the change in employment over the time period. 
Information on the change in the amount paid in benefits due to the change in employment since 1997 is not available at constituency
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level. In Great Britain it is estimated that, compared to 199697, we are now spending £5 billion a year less on the cost of unemployment related benefits as a result of the increase in employment levels.
Information on unemployment in Houghton and Washington, East constituency is in the table.
Number of people
|Proportion of working|
Mr. Kemp: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent discussions she has had with the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence on the NHS making available drugs to treat Alzheimer's disease; and if she will make a statement. 
Jane Kennedy: I received an update on the progress of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence's (NICE) appraisal of drugs for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease during a meeting with NICE'S chair and chief executive on 9 June 2005.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many drugs have been in receipt of NHS funding without having been recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence appraisal in each of the last five years for which records are available. 
Jane Kennedy: All drugs are available via the national health service if considered clinically necessary, regardless of whether they have been the subject of appraisal by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence.
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