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23 July 2007 : Column 689W—continued

Shipping: Accidents

Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what discussions he has had with his French counterpart on the recent report of the French judicial investigation into the loss of the Bugaled Breizh off the coast of the Lizard in January 2004. [149477]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 17 July 2007, Official Report, columns 200-01W. Furthermore, no discussions have been held and none have been sought by the French authorities.

Home Department

Animal Experiments: Licensing

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the cost to applicants is of a licence to conduct animal experiments under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986; how the monies raised from this are spent; what proportion is spent on funding research into non-animal methods; and if she will increase this fee in order to increase financial support for research into non-animal methods. [149948]

Meg Hillier: Under section 8 of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986, holders of certificates of designation under section 6 or 7 of the 1986 Act are required to pay such periodical fees as may be prescribed or determined. A composite fee is currently charged, comprising of an annual fee for the certificate of designation and an annual fee for each personal licensee with primary availability at the establishment. No fee is levied with respect to project licences.

The current fees are: certificate of designation, scientific procedures establishment: £252; certificate of designation, breeding and/or supplying establishment: £1,130; personal licence: £226.

The fees are collected in arrears to cover the costs of operating the 1986 Act. These are, primarily, the staff and running costs of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Inspectorate, the administrative staff running the licensing operation and the Animal Procedures Committee. Fee income is not currently used to provide financial support for research into non-animal methods and we have no plans to increase them for this purpose.

We announced on 21 May 2004, Official Report, column 69WS, that the Home Office would transfer its separately-funded budget for research into the reduction, replacement and refinement of animal experimentation (the 3Rs) to the National Centre for Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) once pre-existing commitments had been honoured. Accordingly, the Home Office contributed £35,000, £125,000 and £250,000 to the funding of the centre in financial years 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2006-07, respectively.


23 July 2007 : Column 690W

The National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research is an independent organisation, funded by Government, research councils and industry, reporting to the Minister for Science and Innovation, and provides a United Kingdom focus for the promotion, development and implementation of the 3Rs in animal research and testing. The centre funds high-quality 3Rs research and facilitates the exchange of information and ideas, the identification of knowledge gaps, and the translation of research findings into practice to benefit both animals and science.

Antisocial Behaviour

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many reported incidents there were of antisocial behaviour in (a) Southampton and (b) Hampshire in each year since 1997. [151029]

Mr. Coaker: The data are not available in the form requested. Antisocial behaviour (ASB) is not measured by incidents but through a measure of perceptions using the British Crime Survey (BCS). The size of the sample in the British Crime Survey means that we cannot provide reliable data for geographical areas smaller than police force areas. Due to changes in the measure of antisocial behaviour, police force area data comparable to the national figures are only available for 2004-05 to 2006-07, and the national measure of perceptions of ASB only back to 2001-02.

Statistics regarding incidents of antisocial behaviour are not collected centrally in the police recorded crime statistics. It is the substantive result of an action of ASB that will be recorded by the police e.g. criminal damage.

The following table sets out the national BCS figures for the last six years and the comparable figure for Hampshire police force area.

Table 1: Percentage of people perceiving high levels of ASB in their local area
National ( Percentage ) Hampshire police force area ( Percentage ) Statistically significantly different (at the 95 per cent. level) from the national average

2001-02

19

2002-03

21

2003-04

16

2004-05

17

18

No

2005-06

17

13

No

2006-07

18

15

No

Note:
The measure of antisocial behaviour used is based on a scale constructed from seven questions on problems due to noisy neighbours or loud parties, teenagers and young people hanging around, rubbish and litter, vandalism, people using or dealing drugs, people being drunk or rowdy and abandoned cars (see background notes for more details).

Burglary: East Sussex

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many domestic burglaries there were in (a) Eastbourne and (b) East Sussex in each of the last 10 years. [151361]


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Mr. Coaker: The available information is given in the following tables and relates to the Eastbourne Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership (CDRP) area and the Sussex police force area as a whole. Data specifically for East Sussex are not available.

Table 1: domestic burglary offences recorded in 1997
Eastbourne CDRP Sussex police force area

1997

n/a

10,862

n/a = Not available.

Table 2: domestic burglary offences recorded by the police—1998-99 to 2001-02
Eastbourne CDRP Sussex police force area

1998-99

n/a

11,026

1999-2000

n/a

9,596

2000-01

665

8,498

2001-02

667

7,618

n/a Not available.
Notes:
1. The coverage was extended and counting rules revised from 1998-99. Figures from that date are not directly comparable with those for 1997.
2. The data in this table are prior to the introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard. These figures are not directly comparable with those for later years.

Table 3: domestic burglary offences recorded by the police—2002-03 to 2006-07
Eastbourne CDRP Sussex police force area

2002-03

667

8,209

2003-04

843

7,920

2004-05

545

6,836

2005-06

431

5,709

2006-07

394

4,556

Note:
The data in this table take account of the introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard in April 2002. These figures are not directly comparable with those for earlier years.

Departments: Racial Harassment

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many complaints of racial abuse relating to staff for which her Department is responsible have been (a) investigated and (b) upheld in the last 12 months. [149251]

Mr. Byrne: During the last 12 months (for the period 1 July 2006 to 30 June 2007) the Home Office, including the Border and Immigration Agency, the Identity and Passport Service and the Criminal Records Bureau, has received nine official complaints of racial discrimination and racial harassment (racial abuse is not a category within the Home Office bullying, harassment and discrimination policy) from staff against their colleagues, all of which were investigated. Fewer than five of the complaints were upheld, and specific information about those individuals is withheld on grounds of confidentiality.

The Border and Immigration Agency also received 50 complaints regarding allegations of racism from customers against its staff, all of which were investigated. Fewer than five of the complaints were upheld, and this information is therefore withheld on grounds of confidentiality.


23 July 2007 : Column 692W

All employees have a duty to respect the dignity of others at work, be mindful of the effect their behaviour may have on colleagues, and ensure their own conduct does not breach the provisions of the Home Office bullying, harassment and discrimination policy.

Under the policy, line managers are responsible for maintaining a workplace that is free from bullying, harassment and discrimination, confronting unacceptable behaviour and dealing promptly, sensitively and confidently with any issues that come to their attention.

Departments: Wales

Mr. Paul Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what land in Wales is owned by her Department. [150224]

Mr. Byrne: My Department owns no land in Wales.

Driving Under Influence

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many drink-driving tests were carried out in (a) Eastbourne and (b) East Sussex in each of the past five years. [151362]

Mr. Coaker: Data on the number of screening breath tests conducted by the police are available by police force area only. The most recently available figures in respect of Sussex are as follows:

Screening breath tests in Sussex police force area from 2000 to 2004
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004

Total tests

20,800

21,800

17,300

17,200

15,200

Note:
Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by police forces. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.
Source:
Breath Tests Statistical Collection, held by the Office for Criminal Justice Reform.

Mr. Anthony Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how she plans to reduce drink driving rates. [151970]

Jim Fitzpatrick: I have been asked to reply.

The Government are committed to reducing drinking and driving through a combination of effective law enforcement, maintenance of a tough penalties regime and continuing investment in high-profile national publicity campaigns.

We have given the police new powers to carry out evidential roadside breath testing, subject to type approval of appropriate equipment. We have also included in the Road Safety Act 2006 a number of further measures designed to deter drink driving and reduce reoffending. These include enabling powers to require serious, including repeat, offenders to retake the driving test at the end of their driving disqualification, improvements to the operation of the drink drive rehabilitation scheme and provision for a statutory alcohol ignition interlock programme.


23 July 2007 : Column 693W

We have just launched a new £3 million multi-media publicity campaign aimed primarily, though not exclusively, at young, male drivers who are more likely to be involved in drink-related crashes than other driver categories. This is designed to emphasise the very serious consequences of being convicted for drink driving and provides a powerful deterrent message for potential drink drivers.

We have also announced, in the second three-year review of the Road Safety Strategy published in February 2007, that we intend to carry out a consultation on other ways of tackling drink driving, including ways of making police enforcement against drink driving easier. A consultation paper will be published by the end of this year.

Electronic Surveillance

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what controls exist on the use of equipment outside buildings capable of listening in on conversations inside buildings but which is not covered by the Interception of Communications Act 1985. [151893]

Mr. McNulty: The Interception of Communications Act 1985 was repealed following the full entry into force of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA). Part 2 of RIPA provides for the authorisation of covert surveillance, including surveillance carried out in relation to anything taking place in residential premises by means of a surveillance device. Where the device is not present on the premises, directed surveillance may be authorised—unless the device consistently provides information of the same quality and detail as might be expected from a device actually present on the premises, in which case intrusive surveillance should be authorised. Authorisation of both intrusive and directed surveillance is subject to independent oversight by the Office of the Surveillance Commissioners and the Intelligence Services Commissioner.

Fingerprints: Suffolk

Mr. Spring: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people in Suffolk had had their fingerprints held on file in each of the last five years. [150543]

Mr. McNulty: The number of people in Suffolk that have had their fingerprints held on file in each of the past five years is as follows:

Number

2002

3,807

2003

4,929

2004

4,456

2005

4,662

2006

5,162


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