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3 Mar 2008 : Column 2085Wcontinued
Mr. Paul Goodman:
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how often the Migration Advisory Committee has met; who attended the meetings; what advice it has provided on cohesion and
integration issues; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Byrne: The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) has met on three occasions, on 7 December 2007, 25 January and 15 February 2008. Minutes of MAC meetings, including details of those attending and all relevant papers, are publicly available at:
The MAC was established to provide independent and evidence-based advice to Government on specific sectors and occupations in the labour market where shortages exist which can sensibly be filled by migration.
The Government may, from time to time, ask the MAC to advise on other matters relating to migration.
Mr. Paul Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how often the Migration Impacts Forum has met; who attended the meetings; what information it has provided on the impacts of migration on communities and public services; what advice it has provided on cohesion and integration issues; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Byrne: The Migration Impacts Forum (MIF) has met three times, twice in 2007 and once in 2008. Minutes of the MIF meetings, including details of those attending, and all relevant papers are publicly available at:
The purpose of the Migration Impacts Forum (MIF) is to provide a forum for proper, regular and organised dialogue with interested parties outside central Government, focussed on the wider impacts associated with migration experienced by local areas. It:
Considers information from forum members about the transitional impacts and/or adjustment requirements which derive from migration
Identifies and shares good practice in managing transitional or adjustment requirements
Brings together existing evidence about the impacts of migration
Suggests areas for Government research on the impacts of migration
The Forum meets quarterly and is chaired jointly by a Home Office and a Communities and Local Government Minister.
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if she will place in the Library a copy of the Governments presentation to the EU Justice and Home Affairs Council on 25 and 26 January on the UKs experience of using passenger name record data. 
Mr. Byrne: The presentation contained details that would be inappropriate for public disclosure therefore it cannot be placed in the Library.
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what progress has been made on the European Commissions Passenger Name Record proposal; what the Governments policy on the proposal is; and if she will make a statement; 
(2) pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 7 February 2008, Official Report, column 82WS, on the Justice and Home Affairs Informal Council, 25 and 26 January 2008, what further work the Government has undertaken into the operation and scope of the use of passenger name record data under the European Commissions proposal; 
(3) what the difficult technical and substantive issues related to use of passenger name record data for law enforcement purposes are. 
Mr. Byrne: The European Commissions proposed legislation on the use of EU PNR for law enforcement purposes was published in November 2007. The Government welcome the EU PNR proposal and believe that it presents an important opportunity to share data in the fight against terrorism and organised crime.
Negotiations are at an early stage. The content of the proposal has been remitted to the Multi-Disciplinary Working Group on Organised Crime for detailed discussions and has also been discussed at a Friends of the Presidency meeting. We believe that the proposed instrument must be compatible with UK domestic initiatives, specifically e-Borders, and are seeking to agree minimum standards of harmonisation in many areas of the text. There are a number of issues to be resolved, including the technical challenges presented by the introduction and harmonisation of EU member states PNR data processing systems; the application of appropriate data protection safeguards; and achieving consensus over the appropriate scope of the proposed instrument.
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what research her Department has conducted into the effectiveness of the use of passenger name record data in preventing people trafficking through airline travel. 
Mr. Byrne: The ability to analyse reservation data to identify persons previously unknown to the law enforcement agencies travel is of significant value to the border agencies. The data elements are provided by carriers and screened using rules based targeting, developed using objective criteria relating to individuals of interest. Where such a passenger is identified, manual analysis of the data is undertaken and, where appropriate, the relevant agency is alerted. The use of these data elements has enabled the identification of persons suspected of involvement in a range of criminal activity.
David Davis: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police officers in each police force had registered earnings outside their police work in each of the last five years for which figures are available. 
Jacqui Smith: The Home Office does not collect data on police officers who have registered earnings outside their police work. It is for Chief Police Officers to record such earnings.
Mr. Meacher: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have (a) been assessed, (b) warranted further investigation, (c) been deemed to be of interest, (d) been arrested, (e) been prosecuted and (f) been convicted under Project Semaphore in each of the last three years; and upon what charges each such prosecution was brought. 
Mr. Byrne [holding answer 28 February 2008]: The information is as follows:
Project Semaphore has an annualised passenger rate of 30 million.
When a passengers details suggest further investigation is required or the passenger is of interest, an alert is sent out to the relevant agency. To date, since its inception on 10 January 2005, a total of over 20,000 alerts have been sent by Semaphore. These alerts numbered 1,619 in 2005, 6,196 in 2006 and 11,166 in 2007.
As at 13 February 2008, there have been a total of over 1,600 arrests of passengers where alerts have been sent by Semaphore. Broken down by year: 125 in 2005, 629 in 2006 and 748 in 2007.
Feedback from police forces to Semaphore is returned only on the number of arrests made. No other detail is passed as a matter of course, e.g. prosecution, conviction, etc.
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress has been made on the European Unions Registered Traveller Programme feasibility study; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Byrne: A Communication from the Commission was issued on 19 February. It invited the European Parliament and the Council to reflect on the future of the EUs integrated border management strategy, including the feasibility of the Registered Traveller Programme. The Commission proposes to issue a further working document in due course. While the UK does not participate in this element of the Schengen Agreement, we will work with the Commission to explore to what extent we are able to develop synergies with the proposals.
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress has been made on the European Unions S-Travel Initiative; what the Governments policy on the initiative is; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Byrne: The United Kingdom is not a member of the S-Travel initiative. Our understanding is that the concept of the S-Travel initiative was introduced in June 2002 with a scheduled completion date of April 2004.
David Davis: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many confiscation orders have been (a) obtained and (b) enforced by the Serious and Organised Crime Agency. 
Jacqui Smith: The SOCA annual report for 2006-07 reported that SOCA had obtained, and assisted with the enforcement of, the following confiscation orders:
|Operational year 2006-07|
As required under the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005, SOCA will publish a report on the exercise of its functions during 2007-08 as soon as possible after the end of the financial year. Comparable figures for the financial year 2007-08 will be available when the report is published.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many staff of the UK Border and Immigration Agency, or contractors on its behalf, are (a) directly involved and (b) exclusively involved with the screening of applicants to the UK Gateway programme. 
Mr. Byrne [holding answer 28 February 2008]: The Refugee Resettlement Programmes Unit administers the Gateway Protection Programme. Of the 15 staff working in the unit, nine staff are involved in the screening of applicants. No staff are exclusively involved with the screening of applicants.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the annual budget was for the UK Gateway Scheme in 2007-08. 
Mr. Byrne: The Gateway protection programme budget for 2007-08 is £9.48 million.
Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the proportion of patients attending accident and emergency departments who could be more appropriately managed in primary care. 
Mr. Bradshaw: No formal estimate has been made by the Department.
It is a matter for the local national health service, along with its strategic health authorities and other interested bodies to plan, develop and organise local services that are responsive to peoples needs. What is key is that patients have timely access to appropriate care. The case mix of patients attending services is likely to vary locally.
Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the incidence of alcohol-related illness for the City of Newcastle upon Tyne was in each year from 2000-01 to 2006-07; and what the rate was per head of population in each year. 
Dawn Primarolo: The information is not available in the format requested.
Data are available on the total finished admissions to hospital of residency of Newcastle primary care trust (PCT) in which the patient had a primary or secondary diagnosis of an alcohol-related illness(1) at the start of his/her stay and the rate per head of the PCT area.
This information has been set out in the following table.
|Year (of end of first period of care in patients hospital stay)||Alcohol-related illnesses finished admissions||Newcastle PCT estimated population||Percentage of finished admissions for alcohol-related illnesses for the Newcastle PCT population|
The figures do not cover all incidence of alcohol-related illness, only these in which an admission to hospital.
Finished admission episodes:
A finished admission episode is the first period of in-patient care under one consultant within one health care provider. Admissions do not represent the number of in-patients, as a person may have more than one admission within the year.
Assessing growth through time:
HES figures are available from 1989-90 onwards. During the years that these records have been collected, the NHS there have been ongoing improvements in quality and coverage. These improvements in information submitted by the NHS have been particularly marked in the earlier years and need to be borne in mind when analysing time series.
Changes in NHS practice also need to be borne in mind when analysing time series. For example, a number of procedures may now be undertaken in out-patient settings and may no longer be accounted in the HES data. This may account for any reductions in activity over time.
(1) All Diagnoses count of Mentions:
These figures represent a count of all mentions of a diagnosis in any of the 14 diagnosis fields in the HES data set. Therefore, if a diagnosis is mentioned in more than one diagnosis field during an episode, all diagnoses are counted.
ICD-10 Diagnosis Codes Used:
F10: Mental and behavioural disorders due to use of alcohol,
K70: Alcoholic liver disease and
T51: Toxic effect of Alcohol.
PCT geographical data:
Population data for PCTs are only available for 2001 onwards.
Figures have not been adjusted for shortfalls in data (i.e. the data are ungrossed).
HES, the Information Centre for health and social care.
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