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Bridget Prentice: The information requested is not held centrally. We do, however, hold the information in relation to the inquests of service personnel who died in Iraq and Afghanistan. The following table shows the number of open inquests, and the percentage this represents of total deaths of service personnel in the conflicts, at the end of each month. Each fatality must be investigated thoroughly, and that inevitably takes time. The figures show that coroners, helped by additional resources made available by the Government, have been reducing the proportion of inquests which are pending. 130 inquests have been held, half of them this year, for service personnel who have lost their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, and two further fatalities have been taken into consideration in inquest proceedings. As at 15 November, there had been 253 service fatalities, either repatriated to England and Wales or who died as a result of injuries, since the conflicts began. We have kept both Houses informed of progress with service inquests and will continue to report each quarter.
|Iraq and Afghanistan service deaths: percentage of uncompleted inquests at the end of each month since March 2003|
|Number( 1)||Percentage( 2)|
|(1) Number of outstanding inquests and number of fatalities. (2 )Number of outstanding inquests expressed as a percentage of the fatalities at the end of the month.|
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the average length of time between a death and the start of a inquest was for members of the armed forces in each month since March 2003, in respect of completed inquests. 
Bridget Prentice: The information is not held centrally. However, an inquest is opened to take identification evidence and to enable release of the body to the family and is generally opened within a few days of the death. There will be a longer interval between the death and the opening where there is the possibility of a homicide offence. In these circumstances, the inquest will only be opened when the police are satisfied that the body will not be needed for the purposes of an investigation. In the case of overseas military inquests, there will also be a slightly longer interval between the death and the opening of the inquest because it usually takes between a week and 10 days before the body is returned to the UK.
Nick Herbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what funding his Department has allocated to cover the costs of digital switchover in (a) prisons, (b) young offenders institutions and (c) detention centres. 
Maria Eagle: The switchover of the prison estate in readiness for the switch from analogue to digital television began in 2005 and is expected to be completed in 2012. To date 22 prison establishments have been switched over to digital television with all of the costs met from the rental revenue generated by the charge levied on prisoners for the rental of televisions from the prison service. The full cost of the switchover is not yet known but it is intended that the cost should be met as far as possible from the revenue.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) how many reports have been made to his Department's nominated officers under paragraph 16 of the revised Civil Service Code since its publication on 6 June 2006; 
Allegations of victimisation for whistleblowing not involving the nominated officers would be made through staff grievance procedures and, in the public sector Prison Service, through an internal procedure for receiving and analysing intelligence on wrongdoing. Both procedures do not centrally record victimisation resulting from whistleblowing as a separate category. In order to provide the information requested, we would need to contact each of our establishments and HR offices, ask them to interrogate their local records and then submit this information to headquarters. This would incur disproportionate cost.
Former DCAOctober 2006.
NOMS, OCJRCurrently under review. Due to be re-issued in early 2008.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many people aged (a) 30 to 39, (b) 40 to 49, (c) 50 to 59 and (d) 60 to 69 years have (i) applied for jobs, (ii) received interviews and (iii) gained (A) temporary and (B) permanent jobs in his Department in 2007. 
Maria Eagle: Unfortunately, the Ministry of Justice does not hold central data in respect of parts (i) and (ii) of this question. To provide this information could be achieved only at a disproportionate cost to the Ministry. The information would have to be extracted from recruitment campaigns undertaken during 2007, by all the Ministry of Justice agencies that have been brought together since 9 May 2007. In respect of part (iii) of this question, a breakdown on the number of people who have gained temporary and permanent jobs by age range within the Ministry is provided in the table.
In general, the Ministry has an obligation under the Civil Service Commissioners Recruitment Code to ensure its recruitment processes are operating under open and fair principles. Therefore, there are no restrictions on application for the majority of civil service posts except for the Prison Service who require an upper age limit of 63 for applications for Prison Officers, thus reflecting the requirement for the organisation to obtain value from the investment in their training.
|Age on joining||Temporary||Permanent|
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