Previous Section Index Home Page

25 Feb 2008 : Column 1323W—continued

Approved Premises

Mr. Heath: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many and what percentage of people housed in approved premises are categorised as (a) high and (b) very high risk in each region; and if he will make a statement. [188355]


25 Feb 2008 : Column 1324W

Maria Eagle: As at 31 December 2007, the number of residents housed in approved premises in England and Wales categorised as (a) high risk of harm was 1,329, representing 69 per cent. of the total number of residents at that date. The number categorised as (b) very high risk of harm was 95, representing 5 per cent. These figures do not include the prospects approved premises, which are a specialist resource for offenders with substance misuse problems. If such offenders were not placed in approved premises, they would fall to be supervised elsewhere in the community. Staff in approved premises are trained in risk assessment and risk management and work closely with offender managers and with the police, in order to protect the public.

The regional profile of offenders, by risk of harm, was as follows:

High risk of harm (a) Very high risk of harm (b)
Region Number Percentage Number Percentage

East

94

67

2

1

East Midlands

108

71

17

11

London

229

85

7

3

North East

86

72

17

14

North West

281

81

12

3

South East

94

48

6

3

South West

77

52

9

6

Wales

62

74

7

8

West of Midlands

119

54

9

4

Yorkshire and Humberside

179

74

9

4

Total

1,329

69

95

5


Courts: Translation Services

Mr. Paul Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice with reference to the Answer of 15 October 2007, Official Report, column 750W, on courts: translation services, what plans Her Majesty’s Courts Service has made for the collection of data relating to interpreting and translation services used in court. [188083]

Maria Eagle: Her Majesty’s Court Service is considering introducing a new centralised system for the provision of interpreting services in court. The proposal for the new system is still in the planning stage and is currently undergoing review and approval. Following implementation it will be possible to collect data centrally.

Custodial Treatment

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice whether courts will be asked to take into account prison capacity when determining whether to use short custodial sentences during the next two financial years. [188049]

Mr. Hanson: Sentencing in individual cases is entirely a matter for the courts and it would not be appropriate to ask them to take into account capacity when sentencing. But the Government believe that
25 Feb 2008 : Column 1325W
short custodial sentences often lack utility and that, while serious and dangerous offenders must go to custody, less serious offenders are usually better punished in the community. We will always ensure that there are prison places for those serious and dangerous offenders who ought to be in prison and that courts have tough community sentences at their disposal to deal with less serious offenders. A working party is currently looking at the advantages, disadvantages and feasibility of establishing a Sentencing Commission that might among other things consider prison capacity.

Departmental Carbon Emissions

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what estimate he has made of the total carbon emissions from the estate of his Department and its predecessor in each year since 2005. [185461]

Maria Eagle: The total CO2 emissions from the Ministry of Justice and its predecessors are approximately 69,617 tonnes between the years 2005-07. This data has previously been reported to be included in the Sustainable Development in Government report published in 2005-06, and the 2006-07 version due to be published early 2008. The breakdown includes:

tonnes of CO 2

2005-06

Former Home Office bodies

28,237

Former DCA

5,943

2006-07

Former Home Office bodies

28,925

Former DCA

6,512


The increase of carbon emissions within former Home Office bodies has resulted from both an increase in prison population and in regime facilities, such as, in some cases the provision of showers for prisoners within cells opposed to providing showers within communal areas.

Within former DCA, the increase has resulted from the significant organisational changes that DCA underwent when the magistrate courts migrated from local authority rule on to the HMCS estate.

Departmental Property

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what property has been lost or stolen from his Department and its predecessor since 1997; and what the estimated cost of replacement was. [187478]

Maria Eagle: We have no recorded losses of assets against our asset register, which records individual assets capitalised at £10,000 and above. Our ‘Loss of Accountable Stores’ records identify the gross value of reported losses from 2002-03 as follows:


25 Feb 2008 : Column 1326W
£

2002-03

12,723.94

2003-04

9,994.25

2004-05

2,242.58

2005-06

378.82

2006-07

641.74

2007-08 (to date)

850.00


Security incident records compiled since 2002-03 identify a total of 489 incidents involving theft or loss. The nature or scale of the loss is not available from the statistics although 190 of the incidents involved theft of IT equipment, though most IT assets are provided by PFI providers. There is no separate record of associated replacement or cost.

Departmental Public Relations

Mr. Jeremy Browne: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many external contracts his Department held with public relations companies in each of the last 10 years; and what the total cost of those contracts was. [183163]

Mr. Straw: Since the Ministry of Justice came into existence on 9 May 2007, the Ministry and its agencies have signed seven contracts with PR agencies at a cost of £210,000.

Departmental Retirement

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many staff in his Department retired on grounds of stress-related illness in each of the last three years. [187504]

Maria Eagle: The information is not available in the format requested. The following table below all ill health retirement figures within the Ministry of Justice's headquarters and agencies in each 12 month period from 1 January 2005.

Ministry of Justice’s agencies ill health retirements 1 January to 31 December 2005, 2006, 2007
2005 2006 2007

Ministry Of Justice Headquarters

(1)

(1)

(1)

Ministry of Justices' Agencies:

Her Majesty's Prisons Service

(1)47

(1)39

98

Her Majesty's Courts Service

(1)

(1)4

30

Office of the Public Guardian

(1)

(1)

(1)

Tribunals Service

(1)

(1)

(1)

Scotland Office and Offices of Advocate General

(1)

(1)

(1)

Office for Criminal Justice Reform(2)

(1)

(1)

(1)

National Offender Management Service(2)

(1)

(1)

(1)

(1) Denotes a number below five. Code of practise does not follow figures to be published that would identify individuals.
(2) The database for National Offender Management Service and the Office of Criminal Justice Reform, does not record information about the medical condition which led to retirement; it simply states ‘Medical Retirement’. There have been no medical retirements in NOMS/OCJR over the last three years.

25 Feb 2008 : Column 1327W

Departmental Sick Leave

Pete Wishart: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what percentage of working days lost by his Department's staff was attributed to stress-related conditions in the most recent year for which figures are available. [187870]

Maria Eagle: The Cabinet Office published a report on sickness absence in the civil service on 7 February 2008. The report included an analysis of the days lost due to sickness absence for each Department by reasons for absence. The following table sets out the figures for 2006-07 for the constituent parts of this Department, which were in place prior to the creation of the Ministry of Justice in May 2007.

Total days los t (number) Proportion lost to mental disorders( 1)( ) (percentage)

Magistrates Court Committee

106,438

19

HM Courts Service

60,911

17

Former Department for Constitutional Affairs

9,689

14

Tribunal Service

7,681

13

Office of the Public Guardian

1,066

38

Scotland Office

121

0

Wales Office

95

6

National Offender Management Service

11,135

20

Office of Criminal Justice Reform

1,347

29

HM Prison Service(1)

573,881

22

(1) 22 per cent. of working days lost recorded for the public sector Prison Service in 2006-07 were attributable to mental and behavioural disorders, which include stress-related conditions.

Next Section Index Home Page