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30 Nov 2005 : Column 537W—continued

Departmental Websites

Charles Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will take steps to ensure the Department's websites attain the W3C AAA standard of accessibility for people with visual and other disabilities; and if he will set a target date for this standard to be achieved by. [30964]

Mr. Touhig: The Ministry of Defence has five principal corporate websites, and we take seriously the requirement to make them accessible for people with
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visual and other disabilities. The e-Government unit of the Cabinet Office mandates the W3C 'A' standard of accessibility, and identifies some elements of the 'AA' and 'AAA' standards as best practice. We aspire to achieve the 'AA' standard in full, as well as the best practice elements of 'AAA'. Where this is not currently being met we have a programme of work to ensure that we will achieve it. The status of current and future achievement of this aspiration is set out in the following table:
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SiteCurrent statusFuture development
www.mod.ukMajority of the site meets the 'A' standard or aboveFollowing launch of redeveloped site in January 2006, whole site will aim to achieve the 'AA' standard
www.foi.mod.ukPartially meets the 'A' standardIs being amalgamated into the corporate site and so will also aim to achieve the 'AA' standard from January 2006 meets the 'A' standardSite software currently being amended to allow addition of alternative text to images. This will be enabled from end of November 2005 leading to significant improvement in accessibility compliance
www.royal-navy.mod.ukPartially meets the 'A' standardFollowing launch of redeveloped site in Jan 2006, whole site will aim to achieve the 'AA' standard
www.raf.mod.ukPartially meets the 'A' standardA redeveloped site will launch late 2006 and will aim to achieve the 'AA' standard

A number of other, generally small, websites are maintained by subsidiary organisations of the MOD and armed forces. However, information on their standards of accessibility is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

European Airlift Transport Co-ordination Cell

Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether it is his policy that the United Kingdom should join the European Airlift Transport Co-ordination Cell. [32711]

John Reid: I assume that the question refers to the European Airlift Centre. The UK was a founding member of this organisation. The other members are Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, and Spain. Nations that are members of the European Airlift Centre can use its services in support of their own national requirements and also in support of international organisations such as NATO and the EU.

Nuclear Deterrent

Mr. Holloway: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will publish consultation documents relating to the decision on the replacement of Trident. [32474]

John Reid: I have nothing to add to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Pendle (Mr. Prentice) during defence questions on 14 November 2005, Official Report, column 692.

Race Equality Impact Assessments

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many Race Equality Impact Assessments his Department completed between (a) April 2004 and March 2005 and (b) April 2005 and November 2005; and how many assessments in each period resulted in a change of policy. [32829]

Mr. Touhig: Between April 2004 and March 2005 the Ministry of Defence completed 20 Race Equality Impact Assessments (REIAs). Of these, one resulted in a policy change. No centrally co-ordinated figures are yet available for the period April 2005 to November 2005 as we collect statistics on an annual basis. Figures for 2005–06 will be collected as part of our next Race Equality Scheme (RES) data monitoring exercise and published in our 2005–06 RES report.
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UK Service Medals

Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the theatres of service in which UK service medals other than general service medals have ceased to be awarded, broken down by (a) date and (b) reasons for the decision in each case. [32611]

Mr. Touhig: Campaign or operational service medals no longer in issue would have been terminated because the operation ended or the risk and rigour diminished. Other than general service medals, the following UK campaign and operational service medals have been awarded since the end of the Second World War:

Medals for Individual Campaigns or Operations:

Operational Service Medal with Ribbon for:

White Phosphorus

Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what discussions he has had with US authorities regarding the use of white phosphorous in Iraq. [33290]

John Reid: None.


Departmental Staff

Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State forEducation and Skills how much it costs to employ (a) (i) multiple part-time and (ii) jobshare staff to a full-time post and (b) a full time member of staff for (A) herDepartment and (B) the Learning and Skills Council. [31265]

Maria Eagle: 'Part-time, jobshare and full time staff in both the Department and the Learning and Skills Council are paid at the same hourly rate as one another. The overall costs and benefits of employing part-time, jobshare or full-time staff depend on the particular circumstances and individuals involved.
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Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many (a) temporary and (b) agency staff she has had working in her Department in the last three years; how long each one has been employed for in total over that period and how many have been taken on as permanent staff. [31266]

Maria Eagle: My Department was established in June 2001. Statistics for temporary agency staff are recorded by days worked and the information detailed in the following table is for the calendar years 2002, 2003, and 2004.
Calendar yearDays worked

The number of temporary staff engaged during the same period varied on a month by month basis. The average use for the calendar years 2002, 2003, 2004 is detailed in the following table:
Calendar yearAverage number of temporary staff

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We do keep statistics on the length of time each individual was employed for. We can also confirm that no agency or temporary staff were subsequently offered permanent appointments.

Education Maintenance Allowance

Shona McIsaac: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many students aged 16 to 18 years of age are in receipt of education maintenance allowance in each institution in (a) North East Lincolnshire and (b) North Lincolnshire. [18474]

Maria Eagle: This is a matter for the Learning and Skills Council, who operate Education Maintenance Allowances for the DfES and hold the information about take-up of the scheme. Mark Haysom, the Council's Chief Executive, will write to my hon. Friend with the information requested and a copy of his reply will be placed in the House Libraries.

Letter from Mark Haysom to Ms McIsaac, dated 7 November 2005:

Young people receiving EMA
North East Lincolnshire130585Grimsby College1,242
North East Lincolnshire130586Franklin College498
North East Lincolnshire118091Tollbar Business and Enterprise College68
North East Lincolnshire118096The Lindsey School and Community Arts College45
North East Lincolnshire118113Matthew Humberstone Church of England School40
North East Lincolnshire118086The Immingham School33
North East Lincolnshire118143Humberston Park School5
North East Lincolnshire118124St. James' School1
North Lincolnshire130587North Lindsey College642
North Lincolnshire130588John Leggott Sixth Form College548
North Lincolnshire118109Baysgarth School37
North Lincolnshire118100Vale of Ancholme Technology College23
North Lincolnshire117706Young Mums Unit2

I hope this information is helpful and addresses your question. If you would like further details please contact Chris Bradley at the LSC National Office on 0114 207 4512 or

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