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To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether technology is available to the
31 Jan 2006 : Column 389W
Police Service of Northern Ireland to allow it to use mobile phone tracking to pursue investigations into (a) missing persons and (b) missing persons believed to be underwater. 
Mr. Woodward: The Police Service of Northern Ireland utilises the same technology as is available in the rest of the United Kingdom. Its use is governed by the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA).
Section 4.1 of the RIPA Codes of Practice for Communications outlines special rules for matters of public interest in relations to deaths, serious injuries and vulnerable persons allowing police to obtain billing, incoming call data and cell site analysis. In 'life at risk' cases, this can be done immediately. Results will depend on the network coverage in the area, whether the phone is switched off or on and the technology available to each individual service provider.
With regard to a missing person underwater, the same technology can be applied as outlined above. Its effectiveness would depend on whether the mobile phone had been rendered inoperable by immersion in water.
Dr. Alasdair McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people were on waiting lists for physiotherapy treatment in each of the health board areas on the last date for which figures are available. 
Mr. Woodward: Information on the number of people on waiting lists for physiotherapy treatment is not collected centrally. However, information is collected centrally on completed waiting times for a first out-patient appointment of an episode of care with a community physiotherapist. The total number of persons attending their first out-patient appointment, and their waiting times are shown in the following table. The table contains information for the quarter ending 30 September 2005 (the latest date for which such information is available). Of the 18,373 persons who attended their first out-patient appointment, 3,143 (17 per cent.) had waited for between three and six months and a further 1,157 (6 per cent.) had waited for six months or more.
|Board area||Patients attending first appointment||Less than 3 months||36 months||6 months or over|
Dr. Alasdair McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment he has made of the possible impact of the cancellation of the physiotherapy degree course for 200506 at the University of Ulster on physiotherapy waiting lists in Northern Ireland. 
Entry to the Physiotherapy degree course at the University of Ulster is being deferred for the academic year 200607. This decision is part of a phased move to change the duration of the course from
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four years to three years, which is in line with courses in England, Wales and Scotland. Plans have been put in place to ensure that there will be no year without a supply of graduates available for employment in the Health and Personal Social Services.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many police officers serving in the Police Service of Northern Ireland have criminal convictions broken down by rank; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Woodward: At present 200 officers remain in the PSNI with convictions. The breakdown by rank is as follows:
|Reserve officer full-time||28|
|Reserve officer part-time||5|
The majority of the offences concerned are traffic offences. People with serious criminal or terrorist backgrounds are not considered suitable to serve in the police service.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) how many and what percentage of (a) female and (b) male prisoners in Northern Ireland are citizens of the Irish Republic; 
(2) pursuant to the answer of 19 January 2006, Official Report, column 1588W, on Male Prisoners (Nationality), whether the statistics provided omit prisoners of Irish nationality; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Woodward: Upon committal each prisoner is required to record whether they are from Great Britain, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland or Other (another country).
However, as the Belfast Agreement recognises the birthright of all the people of Northern Ireland to identify themselves as Irish or British, or both, as they may so choose, it is not possible to state definitively how many prisoners have Irish nationality".
Nationality details provided in my answer of 19 January 2006, Official Report, column 1588W, refer only to those who stated their nationality was other".
David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many girls in Northern Ireland aged (a) 16, (b) 15, (c) 14 and (d) 13 years have been given (i) oral contraception and (ii) contraceptive implants on the NHS in each of the last five years. 
The information requested is not available.
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David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how funding has been allocated through the Teenage Pregnancy Strategy 200207; and how the allocated money has been spent by (a) the Department and (b) boards in preparation for the final publication of the Sexual Health Promotion Strategy and Action Plan. 
Mr. Woodward: In 200203 the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety allocated £300,000 to voluntary and community organisations for projects dealing with issues around teenage pregnancy. In addition, the Department allocated funding to health and social services boards, on a capitation basis, to take forward work on the Teenage Pregnancy and Parenthood Strategy and Action Plan as follows:
Boards spent the allocated funding on a range of programmes and initiatives which can broadly be grouped under the headings of public information/awareness, education, training, services and support. Examples include leaflets and tool kits, parenting and craft classes, promotional materials, young mums' clinics, family planning and women's aid.
The Sexual Health Promotion Strategy and Action Plan is the subject of separate funding arrangements. In 200506, a total of £325,000 was allocated to boards for work on sexual health promotion.
Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on (a) the status of and (b) results of consultation upon the Single Equality Bill. 
Angela E. Smith:
A summary of the responses to the consultation on the Single Equality Bill, which ended in November 2004, was published in March 2005.
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Having met with political parties over the summer, work is on-going and is being fully informed by all the responses received.
Dr. Alasdair McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people were on waiting lists for speech therapy in each of the (a) health boards and (b) education and library boards on the last date for which figures are available. 
Mr. Woodward: Children with speech and language therapy requirements, as part of their Statements of Special Educational Needs, are referred to the Health and Social Services Trusts for therapeutic provision. Education and Library Boards do not separately keep waiting lists for this provision.
Information on the number of people awaiting speech therapy assessment in Health and Social Services Boards is not collected centrally. However, information is collected centrally on completed waiting times for a first out-patient appointment of an episode of care with a community speech and language therapist. The following table contains information for the quarter ending 30 September 2005 (the latest date for which such information is available) and shows that, of the 2,939 persons who attended their first out-patient appointment, 638 (22 per cent.) had waited for between three and six months, and a further 119 (4 per cent.) had waited for six months or more.
|Board area||Patients attending first appointment||Less than three months||Three to six months||Six months or over|
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