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Mrs. Villiers: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much of the £1,060 million Gershon efficiency savings to be achieved in the police were to be achieved through force amalgamations; what alternative efficiencies he plans to replace the previously expected savings; and if he will make a statement on progress towards achieving efficiency savings by the police. 
Mr. McNulty: Achievement of the target of £1,060 million, that applies to the period 2004-05 to 2007-08, was not predicated upon gains from police force restructuring. The Government none the less remain particularly interested in maximising the potential for increased collaboration between forces; exploiting the opportunities for efficiencies in sharing back office functions; and in modernising the work force.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police officers were involved in road accidents while (a) on duty and (b) off-duty in each of the last five years for which figures are available, broken down by force; and how many accidents involved (i) fatalities and (ii) serious injury. 
The information provided is based on the number of road traffic collisions on public roads involving police vehicles. Information is not collected centrally on the numbers of on- or off-duty police officers involved in accidents.
The figures provided in response to this question are based on data collected by the Department on behalf of HMIC. The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) annually publish statistics on deaths during or following police contact. However these data use a much wider definition of road traffic collisions than that collected by HMIC.
Mr. McNulty: At 31 March 2003 there were 619 full-time equivalent police officers in Brent, 683 at 31 March 2004 and 679 at 31 March 2005. Corresponding information for 31 March 2006 will be published later in the year.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police officers are seconded overseas, broken down by (a) country, (b) length of secondment and (c) force from which seconded. 
Mr. McNulty: From 1 January 2006 to 24 July 2006, the Home Office issued 365 authorisations under section 26 of the Police Act 1996 to police officers from forces in England and Wales in respect of travel overseas to provide assistance to an international organisation or other body engaged outside the UK in policing activities. The majority of these authorisations were in respect of short-term assistance, on a wide range of matters and to numerous countries. Longer term deployments are mostly in the form of support to international Peace Support Operations (PSOs), and last up to a year. On 24 July 2006 the United Kingdom had 140 serving police officers working in Peace Support Operations in Bosnia (11); Kosovo (58); Iraq (21); Jordan (47); Sudan (2) and Afghanistan (1). Of these 140 police officers, 67 are from forces in England and Wales. Those forces are: Avon and Somerset; Cheshire; Cleveland; Cumbria; Devon and Cornwall; Durham; Dyfed Powys; Essex; Greater Manchester; Hertfordshire; Humberside; Kent; Lancashire; Lincolnshire; Metropolitan; Merseyside; Norfolk; Northumbria; North Wales; Nottinghamshire; South Yorkshire; Surrey; Sussex; Staffordshire; Thames Valley; West Mercia; West Yorkshire and Wiltshire. The other serving officers on PSOs are from the Ministry of Defence Police, the Police Service of Northern Ireland and Scottish police forces. 10 other longer term deployments have been authorised since 1 January 2006 for officers from forces in England and Wales. All last for a year or more. Three authorisations were in respect of assistance to Trinidad and Tobago by officers from Wiltshire and Cambridgeshire. In respect of the remaining seven authorisations, there are sensitivities which mean I am unable to reveal further details of their deployment.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the operation of section 54 of the Police Act 1996; and what recent representations he has received about the operation of this (a) section and (b) Act. 
Mr. McNulty: HM inspectorate of constabulary (HMIC) provides an independent oversight of policing in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The Government intend building on the current expertise and commitment offered under existing inspection arrangements, by creating a new Inspectorate for Justice, Community Safety and Custody. A synopsis of responses on the proposals can be viewed at:
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the
time it takes for a police officer to complete the paperwork when stopping minors caught drinking in the street; and which forms are required. 
Mr. McNulty: It is a matter for individual police officers to determine the appropriate course of action when dealing with minors caught drinking alcohol in the street or other public place. Research undertaken by the Home Office indicates that stops take on average five minutes or less to record. Records are not held centrally on the average amount of time it takes to complete other locally prescribed forms which might be required in such circumstances.
Mr. McNulty [holding answer 5 July 2006]: I met the Chief Constables and Police Authority Chairs from Cumbria and Lancashire on 10 July. I explained to them that it had not been possible to resolve all of the issues surrounding the proposed merger in a way that would be satisfactory to them and they therefore do not wish to proceed with their voluntary merger. As a result no combined police authority for Cumbria and Lancashire will be established.
Mr. Borrow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will take steps to reimburse police authorities and police forces for the resources spent on those police mergers which will not take place. 
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much his Department spent on (a) administration, (b) legal fees, (c) special advisers and (d) other costs on the police force restructuring consultation; and if he will make a statement. 
Between September 2005 and July 2006, the Home Office has spent approximately £400,000 on staff costs (representing a team of permanent, temporary and seconded staff averaging 10 people during this period) and approximately £20,000 on legal costs. Expenditure on consultancy for assessing and refining the police structures business cases is expected to be up to approximately £800,000. Other Home Office officials and special advisers have
made contributions to work on police restructuring as part of routine business and the costs could not be identified separately.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police officers (a) retired and (b) retired on the grounds of ill health, broken down by type of ill health, in each year since 1997. 
|Full-time equivalent( 1) police officer medical and ordinary retirements in England and Wales (1997-2005)|
|As at 31 March||Medical retirement||Ordinary retirement|
|(1) Prior to 2003, FTE figures excluded those on career breaks. (2) Figures for 2003 are not comparable with other years, as not all of the 43 forces were able to provide complete data.|
Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the new generation Airwave radios; which police forces are using them; and if he will make a statement. 
The Police Information Technology Organisation (PITO) continually evaluates the performance of Airwave through a national service support structure, managing any arising issues jointly with the service provider, O2 Airwave.
Police communications at special events, such as the G8 summit at Gleneagles in 2005, have been facilitated by the adoption of a common technology and since the service first started rolling out in 2001 new features such GPS location sensing and direct access to the police national computer have become available to benefit the safety and effectiveness of individual police officers. The use of Airwave radios has meant improved coverage and clarity compared to the old analogue radios.
The decisions of the ambulance and fire services to move to Airwave will enhance the capabilities of all three emergency services to work together, both on a day-to-day basis and during major incidents.
Currently over 160,000 police officers are using Airwave and 50 forces have fully migrated to the new service. The remaining forces, the Metropolitan police and North Wales, are in the process of migration and will have fully migrated by the summer of 2007.
David Davis: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many children in contravention of their curfew notices have been removed to their place of residence by (a) community support officers and (b) police officers under paragraph 4B of Schedule 4 to the Police Reform Act 2002 in each of the last four years, broken down by police authority. 
John Reid: No curfew notices have been issued under this power as no local child curfew scheme has been established. However other powers have been introduced and used. My answer on 5 December 2005, Official Report, column 968W explained that section 30 of the Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003 provides the police with a power to disperse groups and remove under-16s to their place of residence, within designated areas. The Act also inserted paragraph 4A into Schedule 4 to the Police Reform Act 2002 to allow designated community support officers to use these powers. These powers came into force on 20 January 2004. From a Home Office data collection exercise, we estimated that 809 areas were designated between January 2004 and June 2005. Police officers and community support officer dispersed 14,375 people from the 293 areas where data were available. They also removed 520 young people under 16 to their place of residence from 236 areas where data were available. We do not hold the information on whether these powers were exercised by police officers or community support officers.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police stations have closed in (a) non-rural and (b) rural areas in each year since 1992; and if he will make a statement. 
|Police Stations opened or closed since 1996-97|
|English Shire Authorities||English Metropolitan Authorities||London Authorities||Welsh Authorities|
| Notes: 1. Reliable data unavailable before 1996-97. 2. Returns are available from all forces only from 2003-04. Data relate to returns actually received. Source: Police forces in England and Wales.|
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