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Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) if he will list those of his Department's advisory non-departmental public bodies which the Government are required (a) to consult prior to legislative proposals and (b) to publish their response to advice received from such schools; 
(2) which of the advisory non-departmental public bodies sponsored by his Department have a statutory base which (a) publish their advice to Government, (b) publish an annual report and (c) lay an annual report before Parliament; and whether it is under a statutory requirement in each case; 
(3) which of the advisory non-departmental public bodies sponsored by his Department (a) hold public meetings, (b) conduct public consultation exercises, (c) conduct consultation exercises with outside commercial interests, (d) publish a register of members' interests, (e) publish agendas for meetings and (f) publish the minutes of meetings; and whether it is under a statutory requirement in each case. 
The Industrial Injuries Advisory Council (IIAC) requires the Government to consult the Council prior to legislation on the list of prescribed diseases and on any other matter relating to the industrial injuries disablement benefit scheme or its administration. The Social Security Advisory Committee (SSAC) requires the Government to consult the Committee about proposals for most social security regulations. Only in the case of SSAC is there a statutory requirement to publish the Committee's advice together with the Government's response.
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The Disability Living Allowance Advisory Board (DLAAB) and IIAC have a statutory base, but neither body has a statutory requirement to publish their advice to Government. Only DLAAB has a statutory requirement to present an annual report, although it is not required to lay this before Parliament. In addition, although there is no requirement to do so, MAC, SSAC and the Disability Employment Advisory Committee (DEAC) also produce an annual report which is published on the body's website. Printed copies are also available from the secretariats.
IIAC holds public meetings and conducts public consultation exercises, as does SSAC. Where relevant, SSAC also conduct consultation exercises with outside commercial interests. IIAC is the only advisory body, which publishes its register of members' interests. The register is included within the annual report. MAC publish agendas for their public meetings, but do not publish the minutes of the meetings, although they are available on request. There is no statutory requirement for any of this activity.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the change in the number of jobs in (a) his Department and (b) its agencies was in (i)200304 and (ii) 200405, broken down by business area; what change is planned for (A) 200506 and (B)200607; and if he will make a statement. 
Mrs. McGuire: The change in the number of staff in the Department and its agencies between 200304 and 200405 is shown in Table 1. The baseline for the Department's agreed efficiency challenge is 1 March 2004 at which time overall staffing was 130,632.
|31 March 2004||31 March 2005||Reduction in numbers|
|The Pension Service||18,567||16,189||2,378|
|Child Support Agency||10,779||9,784||995|
|Disability and Carers Service|
|The Rent Service||718||n/a|
|Other Departmental Units||12,068||11,874||194|
|31 March 2006||31 March 2007|
|The Pension Service||14,200||13,350|
|Child Support Agency||9,400||9,400|
|Disability and Carers Service||6,400||5,950|
|The Rent Service||750||650|
|Programme and Systems Delivery||500||450|
|Other Corporate Services||1,150||1,150|
|Work, Welfare and Equality Group||1,050||950|
|Pensions Client Directorate||350||350|
Mrs. McGuire: Information on the number of staff in the Department who have accepted voluntary severance and voluntary retirement through exit schemes in the last three financial years is in the following table.
|Financial year||Number of staff|
|Average working days lost||Percentage working time lost|
Mrs. McGuire [holding answer 25 October 2005]: The voluntary release schemes currently being run within the Department and its agencies are shown in the following tables. Table 1 illustrates the number of schemes operating in each Government Office Region. Table 2 illustrates the agencies and departmental directorates participating in schemes in each Government Office Region.
|Region/country||Number of schemes|
|Yorkshire and The Humber||4|
|East of England||1|
|Region/country||Agency/departmental directorate included|
|Wales||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service|
|South East||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service|
|Yorkshire and The Humber||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service; Departmental Directorates|
|North East||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service; Departmental Directorates|
|London||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service; Disability and Carers Service; Appeals Service; Departmental Directorates|
|East Midlands||Jobcentre Plus|
|East of England||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service; Departmental Directorates|
|West Midlands||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service; Departmental Directorates|
|South West||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service; Departmental Directorates|
|Scotland||Jobcentre Plus; The Pension Service; Departmental Directorates|
|North West||Jobcentre Plus|
Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will make a statement on reductions in departmental staffing to date in accordance with the Gershon efficiency targets, with particular reference to changes in the balance between (a) full-time and part-time staffing transfers from back-office to frontline functions and (b) natural wastage and redundancy. 
Mrs. McGuire: The agreed baseline for the Department's Efficiency Challenge is 1 March 2004 at which time overall staffing was 130,631 (Full Time Equivalent). Staffing at the end of September 2005 was 116,417 (Full Time Equivalent); a reduction of 14,215 (Full Time Equivalent) since the baseline date.
|1 March 2004||103,423||79||27,209||21|
|30 September 2005||88,086||76||28,331||24|
As part of the Department's plans to meet the efficiency challenge, we are increasing the number of posts that have regular, direct contact with customers by 10,000 by March 2008. The increase in posts will occur principally within Jobcentre Plus and they will be resourced through a combination of existing staff within the Department and new recruits. As at the end of September 2005, the Department had created and resourced around 4,000 new customer-facing posts.
Excluding temporary staff, the number of staff leaving the Department over this period through managed exits and natural wastage was 16,117. Of these, 91 per cent. were as a result of natural wastage, and 9 per cent. as a result of managed exits. There have been no compulsory redundancies.
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