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5 Jun 2006 : Column 283W—continued

People Trafficking

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps are being taken to enhance (a) inter-departmental co-operation and (b) a multi-agency approach involving non-governmental organisations in tackling the trafficking of people into the UK. [74837]

Mr. Coaker: The Home Office chairs an inter-departmental ministerial group which meets quarterly and involves a number of Government Departments to discuss how the UK should tackle human trafficking.

We recently finished a public consultation on our strategy to combat trafficking in human beings. The objective of this consultation was to feed into the development of a National Action Plan. We received over 200 responses from non-governmental organisations (NGOs), religious organisations, law enforcement and other bodies.

We are exploring with the key NGOs and others the potential benefits and disadvantages of the approach set out in the Council of Europe Convention on Action
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against Trafficking in Human Beings. Regular meetings with NGO stakeholders are chaired jointly by the Home Office and the Solicitor-General. The first meeting of this new group took place on 15 February and focused on trafficking for sexual exploitation. The group recently met for the second time to discuss the trafficking of children, and will meet again in July. The Government will continue to listen carefully to NGO views to enhance the policies it puts in place to tackle human trafficking.

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what research his Department has conducted on the number of men who come forward to assist police investigations after using the services of a prostitute where they suspect the prostitute to have been a victim of trafficking. [74838]

Mr. Coaker: No such research has been carried out by the Home Office.


Mr. Jeremy Browne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much funding was awarded in police settlements (a) in England and Wales and (b) by each police authority in each year since 1997. [64065]

Mr. Byrne: The information has been placed in the Library.

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much has been allocated to services to reduce to re-offending in each police authority area in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. [71841]

Mr. Sutcliffe: Expenditure on reducing re-offending over 2001-02 to 2005-06 is estimated as:

£ million











(1) Based on expenditure from Home Office Departmental Report table 6.2 2004-05 for Correctional Services, Prisons Service, Probation Service and YJB. (2) The 2002-03 figure has been inflated by an accounting adjustment. (3) Based on planned expenditure per Home Office Departmental Report 2004-05

This is based on an assessment of the proportion of Correctional Services expenditure in England and Wales specifically aimed to reduce re-offending, though on a broader definition most of Correctional Services expenditure, much police expenditure and expenditure
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by other agencies working with offenders could have an impact on re-offending.

It is not possible to provide this information for each police authority area as funding to this level is not necessarily separately identified as being for reducing re-offending, and it is not all allocated on the basis of police authority areas.

Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police officers there are in (a) Cornwall and (b) England per 100,000 of population. [72784]

Mr. McNulty: As at 31 March 2005, there were 212 police officers per 100,000 population in Devon and Cornwall police authority. In the same period, there were 267 police officers per 100,000 population in England and Wales Police forces.

Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police there were in (a) Devon and (b) Cornwall in March (i) 2002, (ii) 2003, (iii) 2004, (iv) 2005 and (v) 2006. [72795]

Mr. McNulty: The information requested is set out in the table. Data on the deployment of police officers to basic command units are collected annually. Information for the position on 31 March 2006 will not be available until the end of July when it will be published on-line by our Research, Development and Statistics Directorate.

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Number of police officers in Devon and Cornwall 2002 to 2005
As at 31 March Cornwall( 1) Devon( 2)














79 (11.2%)


(1) Cornwall is one basic command unit and includes the Isles of Scilly. (2 )Devon has three basic command units: North and East Devon, Plymouth and South and West Devon. Source: 2002 data was collected by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary. From 2003 collected by Home Office Research, Development and Statistics Directorate.

Nick Herbert: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) internal and (b) external meetings his officials have held on police force restructuring in the last 12 months; and how much staff time has been spent in each category of meeting. [68698]

Mr. McNulty [holding answer 8 May 2006]: To answer this question would incur disproportionate costs.

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people were employed in (a) armed response units and (b) specialist firearms officers teams in the West Midlands regional police forces in each year since 1997. [72303]

Mr. Byrne [holding answer 23 May 2006]: The number of authorised firearms officers within Staffordshire police, Warwickshire police, West Mercia constabulary and West Midlands police since 1996-97 are shown in the table. We do not hold information on whether these officers are in armed response units or specialist firearms officers' teams.

Number of authorised firearms officers (AFOs)
1996-97 1997-98 1998-99 1999-2000 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003



















West Mercia









West Midlands


















Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he expects a permanent chief constable to the Thames Valley police force to be appointed. [72259]

Mr. McNulty: The chief constable of Thames Valley police force is appointed by Thames Valley police authority. The current chief constable, Peter Neyroud, has been seconded to the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA) since January 2006, as chief executive designate.

Subject to the passage of the Police and Justice Bill, the NPIA will be established on 1 April 2007. We expect the Bill to complete its parliamentary stages in October or November this year, and Thames Valley police authority are likely to advertise the post of chief constable after that date.


Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps his Department is taking to reduce the transfer of obscene and pornographic material by mobile phone, with particular reference to the use of mobile phones by children. [62562]

Mr. Coaker: The distribution of obscene and pornographic material by mobile phone is already covered by current legislation including the Obscene Publications Act 1959 and the Communications Act 2003.

On 19 January 2004, following discussions with the Home Secretary’s Task Force for Child Protection on the Internet, the mobile operators in the UK also published a self-regulatory Code of Practice for new forms of content on mobile phone services. Among other things, the code requires mobile providers: to
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undertake a process of age verification; to classify commercial content which they supply themselves as unsuitable for customers under 18 where appropriate; to moderate chat rooms made available to customers under 18; and to allow parents and carers to apply filters to the mobile operator’s internet access services so that the internet content thus accessible is restricted. The Independent Mobile Classification body (IMCB), a subsidiary of the Independent Committee for the Supervision of Standards of Telephone Information Services (ICSTIS), fulfils the commitment in the Code to appoint an independent classification body to provide a framework for classifying commercial content that is unsuitable for customers under the age of 18.

Preventing Extremism

Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to implement the proposal in his Department's Preventing Extremism Together report to subsidise the work of the Federation of Student Islamic Societies. [69271]

Meg Munn: I have been asked to reply.

The Preventing Extremism Together (PET) working groups convened last year suggested that further debate between young British Muslims and influential Muslim scholars and figures could help and encourage a stronger challenge to the message of extremism. As a result the Government have supported a campaign to help do this, led by grassroots British Muslim organisations such as Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS), Q News and Young Muslim Organisation (YMO) amongst other Muslim organisations. To date the initiative which was successfully launched in December 2005 has brought influential mainstream Muslims scholars and thinkers to speak to audiences of thousands of 18 to 30 year old British Muslims, a large percentage of whom have been young British Muslim women. To ensure that the message reaches a wider audience the organisers have also developed a website and are producing a range of other resources.

Prisoner Deportation

Mr. Cash: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what account he has taken in exercising his discretion in implementing his policy on the deportation of foreign national convicted persons of (a) the Human Rights Act 1998 and (b) Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights. [68888]

Mr. Byrne: Paragraph 364 of the Immigration Rules (HC 395) sets out how the Secretary of State should consider whether deportation is the right course on the merits, balancing the public interest against any compassionate circumstances and taking into account all relevant factors known to him. The factors listed in paragraph 364 include, but are not limited to, what would be relevant under the Human Rights Act.

My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary set out in his statement of 23 May that we are issuing new
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guidance to caseworkers which interprets the decision-making criteria much more tightly in the future.


John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of (a) the importance to prisoners of serving in open conditions close to their homes and (b) the impact of doing so on (i) the prospect of getting full-time employment upon release, (ii) successful reintegration into the community and (iii) re-offending rates. [55492]

Mr. Sutcliffe: There has been no formal evaluation of the impact on resettlement outcomes of open and resettlement regimes. Valuable work is undertaken with prisoners throughout their sentence and it might be misleading to ascribe resettlement outcomes only to the discharging prison. However, a new method of evaluation is now being tested within the National Offender Management Service which may facilitate a more sophisticated analysis of the impact of different regimes. If this methodology proves successful, the same approach will used, later this year, to evaluate the impact on re-offending of open and resettlement estate regimes, close to their homes; (b) or the impact of doing so on employment on release, successful resettlement or their re-offending rates.

John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department for what reasons HMP Grendon and HMP Springhill receive lower funding than HMP Rampton and HMP Broadmoor. [65603]

Ms Rosie Winterton: I have been asked to reply.

Rampton and Broadmoor are high security psychiatric hospitals, not prisons, and as such it is not appropriate to directly compare the funding they receive to that received by prisons such as HMP Grendon and HMP Springhill.

Mr. Clegg: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to his answer of 7 February 2006, Official Report, column 1108W, on prisoners, how many (a) escapes and (b) unapproved absences there have been from English prisons since 7 February 2006, broken down by region. [73574]

Mr. Sutcliffe: Since 7 February 2006, there have been no escapes and 84 unapproved absences from English prisons as detailed in the following table.

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