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25 Oct 2007 : Column 461W—continued

25 Oct 2007 : Column 462W

(2) how many prisoners recalled to prison after release on the End of Custody Licence Scheme remained unlawfully at large until their scheduled release date. [160138]

Mr. Hanson: Offenders who breach any condition of the End of Custody Licence (ECL) are liable to be recalled, and a revocation order revoking their licence will be issued. From the revocation issue date, until they are arrested and returned to custody, the offender remains unlawfully at large (UAL). This period of absence is not treated as part of the sentence served unless the Secretary of State directs that it should be. Therefore, when the prisoner is returned to custody, the sentence must continue to be served including any custodial days outstanding.

All offenders whose End of Custody Licence is revoked are notified to the police local to the area to which the offender has been released. The police are committed to arresting and returning offenders to custody as quickly as possible.

Data on ECL, including prisoners recalled, are published at the end of each month on the Ministry of Justice website. The August report, published on 28 September, states that of the 205 offenders notified to NOMS as recalled between 29 June and the end of August, 48 offenders had not been returned to custody by end of 21 September, and all of those have passed their scheduled release date.

Information on the number of recalled offenders who have returned to custody and those who have not, as notified to NOMS, is reported monthly on the Ministry of Justice publications website.

Prisoners Transfers

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much his Department was invoiced for costs incurred relating to transferring prisoners between sites of secure accommodation in (a) each year since 2001 and (b) each month in 2007; and if he will make a statement. [160755]

Mr. Hanson: Details of expenditure on inter-prison transfer and court escort services, including the daytime staffing of court facilities and docks in courts by escort contractors for each year since 2001 are set out in the following table:

£ million













Details of expenditure for the financial year 2007-08 on a monthly basis are as follows:

25 Oct 2007 : Column 463W
£ million













Some of these payments do not necessarily relate to the months the actual costs were incurred.

Neither set of figures include costs of locally managed prisoner transfers. These are not recorded centrally.

Prisoners: Voting Rights

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice when he plans to publish his Department’s response to the consultation on voting rights for convicted prisoners. [160562]

Bridget Prentice: The Government are currently considering how to take forward the implementation of the “Hirst” judgment in light of the first stage of consultation on this issue.

Prisons: Film

David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much was spent on cinema systems in (a) prisons and (b) young offender institutions in each of the last three years. [160461]

Mr. Hanson: Her Majesty’s Prison Service does not collect information to this degree of detail on its central accounting system. This information could be obtained only at a disproportionate cost.

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what guidance has been issued to prison governors and officers on the showing of 18 certificate films in prisons and young offenders institutions. [160565]

Mr. Hanson: No specific guidance has been issued. Prison governors are expected to comply with the certification requirements and will exercise their professional judgement over the suitability of films to be shown to prisoners.

Prisons: Infectious Diseases

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many cases of (a) influenza, (b) Legionnaires’ disease, (c) MRSA, (d) dysentery, (e) tuberculosis and (f) Clostridium difficile there were within prisons in England and Wales in each year since 2000. [160561]

Mr. Hanson: The information requested is not held centrally.

The Prison Service’s Performance Standard, Health Services for Prisoners (May 2004), requires every prison establishment to have in place effective arrangements for the prevention, control and management of communicable diseases. These must include arrangements for the notification of all incidents of notifiable disease, such as tuberculosis, to the local Health Protection Agency’s Consultant in Communicable Disease Control (CCDC) and an action plan in the event of an outbreak of a communicable disease.

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Upon the detection of any infection in a prison establishment, appropriate health care and infection control procedures should be instituted in partnership with infection control teams in primary care trusts and health protection units.

Prisons: Telephones

David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much was spent on (a) purchasing, (b) renting and (c) installing telephone systems for inmates in prisons in England and Wales in each of the last three years. [160469]

Mr. Hanson: The information requested is not held and would require detailed consultations with the provider of the public prisoner telephone network at a disproportionate cost. Additionally detailed information on the precise commercial terms of purchasing, rental and installation of telephones by private sector prisons may not be available for commercial-in-confidence reasons.

Prisons: Visits

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many prisons in England and Wales participate in child-friendly visit schemes. [160747]

Mr. Hanson: A new Prison Service Order was recently issued to prisons which emphasises the need to make social visits as child friendly as possible, although there is currently no performance standard that requires prisons to operate specific child or family day schemes. As a result, we do not collect information about how many have been run. However, while practice and provision varies across the prison estate, a growing number of establishments are running schemes to ensure meaningful contact between prisoners and their children.


David Davis: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many crimes are known to have been committed by offenders while on licence from prison in (a) 2002 and (b) 2006. [160560]

Mr. Hanson: We have data on the proven re-offending of offenders who were released on licence, but some of the re-offending of these offenders may have been committed after their licence period ended.

The available information on number of offences committed over three months by those offenders who were on licence when the snapshot of the probation caseload was taken is given in the following table. Information relating to 2002 is not available and could be produced only at disproportionate cost.

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Proven re-offending of those released on licence who were recorded as being on the probation caseload (England and Wales) at the end of March, June, September, December 200
Date of data extract Total number of offenders on post-release supervision on probation caseload( 1) Period of re-offence Number of re-offences( 2) Number of re-offenders

End March 2006


April to June 2006



End June 2006


July to September 2006



End September 2006


October to December 2006



End December 2006


January to March 2007



(1) Based on data matched with the PNC
(2) A re-offence is defined as an offence leading to a caution or conviction which took place in the three months following the end of that quarter and was proven within six months of the end of that quarter. For example, for March 2006, re-offences which took place in April, May or June 2006 will be included as long as they were proven by the end September 2006.
These figures have been drawn from administrative IT systems, which, as with any large scale recording system, are subject to possible errors with data entry and processing.

Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the re-offending rate was for prisoners who had served custodial sentences in the latest period for which figures are available; and what plans are in place to reduce it. [160643]

Mr. Hanson: The latest available data for adult offenders discharged from custody in the first quarter of 2004 show a 64.7 per cent. re-offending rate. The latest available data for juvenile offenders discharged from custody in the first quarter of 2005 show a 76.2 per cent. rate of re-offending.

The adult results show a 4.6 per cent. reduction in re-offending since 2000 and the juvenile results show a 2.8 per cent. reduction since 2000. Reductions in re-offending are measured by comparing the actual rate of proven re-offending to a predicted rate (which controls for changes in offenders characteristics) which is based on the results of the 2000 dataset.

The following tables set out adult and juvenile results since 2000.

Percentage change in re-offending
Actual re-offending rate Predicted re-offending rate Increase Reduction















Actual re-offending rate Predicted re-offending rate Percentage change in re-offending (reduction)










(1) Unavailable.

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A great deal of work is being taken forward across Government to build on this success. Reducing re-offending is a key element of the new Home Office Crime Strategy “Cutting Crime: A New Partnership 2008-11”. The new “Make Communities Safer” Public Service Agreement sets a target both to reduce adult and youth re-offending, and to reduce the level of serious re-offences. NOMS and DIUS will be producing an overarching Strategic Plan in spring 2008 to set out how the Government intend to meet this challenge and a consultation paper will be published shortly. Alongside this consultation, we will also be consulting on an Offender Health and Social Care Strategy and a NOMS Third Sector Action Plan. While these will focus on specific elements of work to reduce re-offending, they will support the overarching Strategic Plan, and underscore the Government’s commitment to tackling re-offending holistically.

The Youth Justice Board (YJB) is working to reduce youth re-offending. The YJB has a scaled approach to youth justice interventions to ensure that youth offending services focus on those children and young people most likely to re-offend. The YJB has developed the assessment tool “Asset” which is used by all Youth Offending Teams (YOTs) to identify the risk factors driving offending behaviour and the protective factors that will support desistance. Asset is used to design a “multi modal” package of interventions to reduce risk factors and build up the protective factors. The Wiring-Up Youth Justice Programme is providing YOTs with the latest technology to improve the speed and quality of information transfer between YOTs, secure establishments and other key service providers.

The new local government performance framework which contains six specific youth justice indicators (out of total of 197) provides YOTs with an excellent lever to encourage local authority chief executives to prioritise young offenders’ access to services.

The reducing re-offending agenda also makes important contributions to a number of other cross-Government PSAs including, PSA 16: Increase the proportion of socially excluded adults in settled accommodation, employment, education or training; PSA 25: Reduce the harm caused by Drugs and Alcohol and PSA 24: Deliver a more effective transparent and responsive Criminal Justice System for victims and the public.

We are introducing new ways of measuring progress on reducing re-offending, which will include reducing the reporting time lag in the adult results from two years to one year and producing a metric to provide a more detailed understanding of the volume and seriousness of re-offences.

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