Previous Section Index Home Page

19 Jun 2006 : Column 1649W—continued


Long-Term Care

Mr. Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what estimate he has made of the number of people in Northern Ireland who have had to sell their family homes in order to provide funds for long-term care in each year since proceedings in the case of Pamela Coughlan v. the NHS were completed. [78448]

Paul Goggins: The Department does not collect information on the numbers of people who sell their homes to realise the funds required to pay for long-term care and has not made an estimate of such house sales for each year since the judgment in the case of R. v. North and East Devon health authority ex parte Pamela Coughlan was handed down by the Court of Appeal in July 1999.

Mr. Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will bring forward amending legislation to end the requirement on those who enter long-term care to sell their family home in order to fund such care. [78449]

Paul Goggins: There is no legal requirement for those entering long-term care to sell a family home to fund their care. Following an individual financial assessment to calculate how much each individual can afford to pay towards the cost of their care, it is entirely a matter for each individual and their advisors to decide how best to meet any charges. Current Northern Ireland legislation provides a 12-week disregard of the value of a residents home following permanent admission to a care home. I am not, however, proposing to promote amending legislation to exclude totally the value of a resident's family home from the assessment of each individual's resources.

Long-term Unemployed

Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people in Northern Ireland are defined as long-term unemployed, broken down by (a) parliamentary constituency and (b) district council area; and what measures the Department for Employment and Learning has in place to encourage long-term unemployed people to return to education. [75424]


19 Jun 2006 : Column 1650W

Maria Eagle: The number and percentage of long-term unemployed from the claimant count in April 2006, broken down by (a) parliamentary constituency and (b) district council area, are shown in the following tables.

(a) Parliamentary constituencies
Number of long-term unemployed claimants Long-term unemployed claimants as a percentage of total claimants

Belfast East

175

16.0

Belfast North

520

23.4

Belfast South

260

18.8

Belfast West

820

26.6

East Antrim

250

18.2

East Londonderry

330

20.0

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

345

27.5

Foyle

690

20.1

Lagan Valley

160

17.3

Mid Ulster

165

19.2

Newry and Armagh

340

24.4

North Antrim

250

16.7

North Down

175

17.1

South Antrim

215

18.6

South Down

290

22.4

Strangford

285

24.9

Upper Bann

185

14.7

West Tyrone

470

25.1

Northern Ireland

5,925

21.2


(b) District councils
Number of long-term unemployed claimants Long-term unemployed claimants as a percentage of total claimants

Antrim

100

17.1

Ards

240

24.6

Armagh

115

20.7

Ballymena

140

18.3

Ballymoney

50

12.2

Banbridge

55

16.0

Belfast

1,565

22.9

Carrickfergus

75

14.5

Castlereagh

90

16.1

Coleraine

210

20.1

Cookstown

70

18.0

Craigavon

150

14.3

Derry

690

20.1

Down

205

22.1

Dungannon

90

19.5

Fermanagh

275

30.5

Larne

70

17.9

Limavady

125

19.7

Lisburn

305

21.5

Magherafelt

75

20.5

Moyle

60

18.7

Newry and Mourne

325

25.9

Newtownabbey

220

21.2

North Down

155

17.6

Omagh

185

25.6

Strabane

285

24.7

Northern Ireland

5,925

21.2


19 Jun 2006 : Column 1651W

The Department for Employment and Learning has introduced a number of policies and initiatives in the further and higher education sectors, to widen access and increase adult participation in vocational education and training; the target group includes the long term unemployed.

These measures include an expansion of courses for those returning to learning; the allocation of additional funding to support provision from non-statutory providers and support measures to provide help to students who are deterred from enrolling in further education because of financial hardship or other difficulties. In 2005-06 this support to students totalled over £2.5 million. There is also an entitlement to free professional and technical courses, for all full-time students, aged 19 and over.

Within higher education, the Department has set a target of progressing year on year towards fair access to HE by 2008. The Widening Participation Strategy has included the setting of an annual target to increase representation of people from lower socio-economic classifications.

The Department also provides a number of targeted programmes to assist those who are out of work move towards, and return to the labour market. This includes a suite of new deal programmes where eligible participants may access short accredited training courses or three units of a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ). The purpose of this provision is designed to assist people find jobs and help them stay and progress in employment through training and work experience.

Neighbourhood Partnerships

Mr. Peter Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland which consultants have been selected to assist with the visioning and action plans for Neighbourhood Partnerships. [77225]

Mr. Hanson: MacBride International was successful in winning the contract to provide consultancy support to seven Neighbourhood Partnerships to assist them with their vision and action planning process.

Noise Nuisance

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many complaints were made about noise levels to each district and borough council in Northern Ireland in each of the past five years; and on how many occasions each council took steps to reduce the noise level. [77306]

David Cairns: District council noise complaint statistics have been collected by the Department of the Environment since 2004, therefore only two years of data is currently available.

In 2003-04, district councils received a total of 8,397 complaints about noise. During the same period a total of 307 noise abatement notices were issued and seven prosecutions were taken by council officers.

In 2004-05 the number of noise complaints received by councils totalled 10,047. During the same period a total of 340 noise abatement notices and 17 prosecutions were taken by council officers.


19 Jun 2006 : Column 1652W

A breakdown of the statistics by district council is contained in an annual report published by the Department. The reports for 2003-04 and 2004-05 can be accessed on the Environment and Heritage service’s website at http://www.ehsni.gov.uk/environment/noise/noisestats.shtml The report for 2005-06 is presently being compiled and will be published by 31 August 2006. Copies of this report will be placed in the Library.

PSNI

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many Police Service of Northern Ireland officers have been injured as a result of gunshot wounds while policing parades in Northern Ireland in each of the past 10 years. [65334]

Paul Goggins: The PSNI advises that while figures can be provided on the number of police officers injured in shooting incidents, it is not possible to specify if the injury was sustained as a result of policing a parade. The overall figures for the number of officers receiving gunshot wounds are as follows:

Number

1996

4

1997

7

1998

1

1999

0

2000

0

2001

2

2002

1

2003

2

2004

0

2005

0

Note:
2005 statistics are provisional and may be subject to minor amendment.

Next Section Index Home Page