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Mr. Charles Clarke: The number of work permits issued by Work Permits (UK) in each of the last eight years is displayed in the table. These figures exclude approvals of extension and change of employment applications for existing permit holders.
The Government committed to publish data from the Worker Registration Scheme (WRS) on a quarterly basis. The latest quarterly statistics for the period 1 May 2004 to 30 June 2005 were published on 23 August 2005. The report includes the number of people registering on the WRS and gives details of the employment sectors in which Accession nationals are registered.
John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the study undertaken by the Youth Justice Board with the courts to explore the factors that influence sentences. 
The research is being undertaken by the Policy Research Bureau working with MACRO. It is taking place in 16 Youth Offending Team areas and includes interviews with magistrates and judges in those areas. It is similar in nature to earlier research undertaken in the adult criminal courts by Professor Mike Hough, Dr. Andrew Millie and Dr. Jessica Jacobson. Their findings were published in the report The Decision to Imprison, Sentencing and the Prison Population" in 2003 by the Prison Reform Trust. It also supports a three year longitudinal study being undertaken by RDS section of the Home Office, using court records to explore the factors influencing sentencing decisions within both adult and youth courts. This study will be tracked to examine the relationship between offender characteristics, sentence content and outcome.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many agency staff are employed by her Department; and what the cost of employing them was in the last year for which figures are available. 
Bridget Prentice: The Department has a national contract for the provision of agency workers. Information regarding the number of agency workers provided to the Department under this contract and the associated expenditure is provided as follows.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs pursuant to the answer of 2 November 2005, Official Report, column 1165W, on ballot paper descriptions, whether (a) the five descriptions will allow a generic locality description to be registered permitting a candidate to use a description comprising constituency name and party name in each constituency and (b) only a specific named locality may be registered. 
Ms Harman: Further to my answer of 2 November, under clause 47 of the Electoral Administration Bill registered political parties would be permitted to register up to five descriptions with the Electoral Commission. There is no provision for a generic locality description. It would be for the party to decide whether they wished to register a description including a specific named locality.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs pursuant to the answer of 2 November 2005, Official Report, column 1165W, on ballot paper descriptions, for what reasons the number of descriptions is limited to five. 
Ms Harman: Clause 47 of the Electoral Reform Bill provides for there to be up to five alternative party descriptions registered with the Electoral Commission. This implements the Electoral Commission's recommendation in Standing for election in the United Kingdom", published in June 2003. It would allow one description each for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the United Kingdom as a whole and would simplify the use of party descriptions for the benefit of candidates and returning officers.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will list right hon. and hon. Members who (a) presented and (b) supported the Bills for the (i) Representation of the People Act 2000, (ii) Registration of Political Parties Act 1998, (iii) Political Parties Elections and Referendums Act 2000, (iv) Elections Act 2001 and (v) Election Publications Act 2001. 
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many call centres were run by her Department and its agencies in (a) 200304, (b) 200405 and (c) 200506 to date; and how many
14 Nov 2005 : Column 996W
and what proportion of calls (i) were handled by an adviser, (ii) were received but abandoned and (iii) received an engaged tone in each year. 
|Asylum and Immigration|
Tribunals Call Centre
|Calls handled by an adviser||282,687||253,826||158,393|
|Calls received but abandoned||7,254||9,131||19,302|
|Engaged tone received by caller||(43)||(43)||(43)|
|Gwent Magistrates Fines Centre||200304||200405||200506|
|Calls handled by an adviser||(44)||(44)||2,087|
|Calls received but abandoned||(44)||(44)||1,533|
|Engaged tone received by caller||(44)||(44)||(45)|
Following the installation of monitoring software, the high abandonment rate at Gwent Magistrates Court Fines Centre was identified and investigated, with remedial measures put in place on 2 October 2005. The number of lines has been increased threefold (from six to 21) and the situation is being closely monitored to ensure performance improves.
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