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Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) how many people in Foyle constituency applied to the Roads Service for disabled parking bay outside their homes in each of the last five years; and how many such applications were (a) granted and (b) denied; 
(2) how many applications from people resident in Foyle constituency to the Roads Service for a disabled parking bay outside their homes are awaiting assessment; and what the average time taken for processing such applications is. 
(i) How many people in Foyle constituency applied to the Roads Service for disabled parking bay outside their homes in each of the last five years; and how many of such applications were (a) granted and (b) denied; and
(ii) How many applications from people resident in Foyle constituency to the Roads Service for a disabled parking bay outside their homes are awaiting assessment; and what the average time taken for processing such applications is.
|Inquiries||Number of applications(56)||Granted||Denied|
Following receipt of a completed application form, it usually takes about 3 weeks for an assessment to be completed. If the application satisfies the assessment guidelines, approval is then required from the PSNI before the legislation process can begin. Roads Service cannot mark out the bay in the ground before the legislation process is completed. Subject to there being no objections, this usually takes about 6 months.
Mr. Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people defined as (a) Protestant, (b) Roman Catholic and (c) non-determined have been offered support and assistance by the Equality Commission at fair employment tribunals in cases of alleged discrimination on the grounds of religion in Northern Ireland in each of the last five years. 
Angela E. Smith: The Equality Commission has assisted the following numbers of people at Fair Employment Tribunals in their cases of alleged discrimination on the grounds of religion and/or political opinion in each of the last five years.
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland pursuant to the answer of 5 December 2005, Official Report, column 1074W, on identity cards,
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whether his Department has any plans to make use of the identity card scheme for the services which are its responsibilities. 
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will list the official residences for which his Department is responsible; who occupies each one; what the annual cost is of running each property; what contribution the occupants of each make towards running costs; what the total capital and refurbishment expenditure was on those properties in 200405; how much was spent in each property on (a) flowers and plants, (b) wine and entertaining, (c) food, (d) telephone bills and (e) electricity and gas in 200405; how many (i) domestic and (ii) maintenance staff are employed at each property, broken down by post; and what the total cost of staff employment was in 200405. 
Mr. Hain: When in Northern Ireland I reside at Hillsborough castle. The facilities at the castle are also used to provide official hospitality and overnight accommodation for members of the Royal Family, visiting dignitaries and diplomats. Other activities at the castle include departmental meetings, the Annual Garden Party and citizenship ceremonies. In addition to its use by the Northern Ireland Office and other Government Departments, charities and local community groups can request to use the facilities, generally for fund raising purposes, and the castle and grounds are open at certain times of the year for guided tours.
The total cost of running Hillsborough castle in the 200405 financial year was £1,426,105.94. This includes the maintenance of the listed building and grounds; the security of the castle and its grounds, and that of Ministers, officials and visitors while present at the castle. It also includes the cost of hosting the events listed above, as well as catering, hospitality and administration.
I am on duty while at Hillsborough castle and therefore my costs count as official expense. Records of expenditure on refurbishment are an integral part of the records that cover many other items of building maintenance and repair. It would be possible to identify only those items that relate specifically to refurbishment only at disproportionate cost.
There were 25 staff employed at Hillsborough castle during the 200405 year providing administrative support, household and catering services, gardening services and 24 hour security. The total cost of employing these staff was £627,841.81.
Mr. Woodward: Children with gastroenterology problems in Northern Ireland are currently cared for by a range of staff including paediatricians, paediatric surgeons and dieticians. In recent years the service has been predominately provided by the Royal Belfast hospital for Sick Children with specialised input from visiting consultants from Great Britain. The establishment of a local dedicated service, specifically for the provision of paediatric gastroenterology, has been recognised as a priority by the Department and Commissioners; funding has been allocated for a paediatric gastroenterologist and appropriate support staff and recruitment is currently underway.
Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many children are on the waiting list for upper gastro-intestinal endoscopy and colonoscopy procedures; how many additional referrals are added to that waiting list on average per month; how many procedures are carried out on average each month; and on what date the longest-waiting patient joined the list. 
Please note that the age group generally considered to be children by Trusts is the 0 to 16 years age group. Exceptions to this are Craigavon Area Hospital Health and Social Services Trust (0 to 14 years) and Causeway Health and Social Services Trust (0 to 17 years).
Over the period January 2003 to March 2005, the average number of endoscopies carried out on children aged under 16 years in Northern Ireland each month was 38. Over the same period, the average number of colonoscopies carried out on children aged under 16 years in Northern Ireland each month was 10. The procedures were carried out as either primary or secondary procedures.
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland when he expects paediatric gastroenterology services in Northern Ireland will attain
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the service standards as set out in the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health Document, Commissioning Tertiary and Specialised Service for Children and Young People. 
Mr. Woodward: It is not possible to be precise about the time scale within which these standards will all be obtained. However the recruitment of a dedicated paediatric gastroenterologist at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children will be a significant step forward in improving the quality of care provided locally and in helping to achieve national standards.
Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many whole-time equivalent paediatric gastroenterologists are employed in the NHS in Northern Ireland; what support there is in terms of (a) nursing staff, (b) allied health professionals and (c) fully funded endoscopy theatre sessions; and what the plans are for each category for 200607. 
Mr. Woodward: The information requested is not held centrally and will take some time to collate. I will write to the hon. Gentleman with the information as soon as it is available and place a copy in the Library.
Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many children under the age of 16 years have had (a) gastro-intestinal endoscopy and (b) colonoscopy procedures carried out by non-paediatric consultants since 1 January 2003. 
Mr. Woodward: Information on the number of procedures carried out on children under the age of 16 years in Northern Ireland, from 1 January 2003 until 31 March 2005, is available from the Hospital Inpatient System and is provided in the table. Details of individual consultants undertaking the procedures are not collected.
Any individual could have more than one operation or procedure undertaken during their stay in hospital and could also be admitted more than once over the course of a year or years. It should be noted that more than one consultant could be responsible for undertaking gastro-intestinal endoscopy and colonoscopy procedures at any one of these hospitals.
Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether all children under the age of 16 years who have been referred for (a) upper gastro-intestinal endoscopy and (b) colonoscopy procedures will have their procedures performed by paediatric consultants. 
The majority of children under the age of 16 who have been referred for upper gastro-intestinal endoscopy or colonoscopy procedures will have them carried out by either a consultant paediatrician or a consultant paediatric surgeon. For children at the upper end of the age limit it is entirely appropriate for their treatment to be carried out by consultant gastroenterologists or consultant surgeons.
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