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Mr. Bradshaw: The Department has not undertaken a specific assessment of the effectiveness of the operation of choose and book in South East London. If required, this would be the responsibility of the local primary care trusts. In March 2008, choose and book utilisation in South East London was 33 per cent., compared with a London average of 39 per cent. and a national average of 45 per cent.
Mrs. Riordan: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the number of incidents of volatile substance abuse arising from the sale of butane cigarette lighter fuel in the latest period for which figures are available. 
Dawn Primarolo: Information on the number of incidents of volatile substance abuse arising from the sale of butane cigarette lighter fuel is not collected centrally. However, the number of deaths associated with cigarette lighter refills are available and are provided as follows.
Trends in Death Associated with Abuse of Volatile Substances 1971-2005, St George's, University of London.
Refurbishment, repair and redecoration costs for 2 Marsham street over the past two years were not met directly as this responsibility was allocated to the supplier under the PFI contract for its design, construction and operation on behalf of the Department.
These costs are therefore covered by the annual PFI charge and are not held by the Department.
James Brokenshire: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent representations she has received on the establishment of alcohol disorder zones; and when such zones are planned to become operational. 
Mr. Coaker: The Home Office has not received any recent formal representations concerning alcohol disorder zones. The ADZ regulations have passed through both Houses of Parliament and we expect the regulations will be commenced in June 2008.
Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department further to the Prime Minister's comments on tackling binge drinking at her press conference on 28 January, what powers are available to local authorities to charge establishments selling alcohol to pay for additional policing. 
Mr. Coaker [holding answer 1 February 2008]: Sections 15 to 20 of the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 give local authorities the power to designate, with the consent of the police, a locality as an alcohol disorder zone (ADZ) where there is a problem with alcohol-related nuisance and disorder. Local authorities will have the power to impose charges on holders of premises licences allowing the sale by retail of alcohol and on holders of club premises certificates allowing the supply of alcohol to members and their guests.
The ADZ regulations have passed through both Houses of Parliament and are expected to be commenced in June 2008. A copy of the updated guidance can be found on the Home Office website using the link below:
Ms Keeble: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what figures her Department holds on levels of binge drinking among people aged (a) under 16, (b) 16 to 24 and (c) over 24 years. 
Mr. Coaker: There is no universally agreed definition of binge drinking, but the term has generally been used to describe a pattern of drinking that involves drinking alcohol to excess over a short period of time.
The Home Office published a study in 2006 (Underage drinking: findings from the 2004 Offending, Crime and Justice Survey Matthews et al (2006) Home Office Findings 277) to explore the prevalence and nature of underage drinking and the relationship between alcohol consumption and offending among young people (10 to 17-years-old). The report can be found here:
The Home Office also published a study in 2005 (Findings from the 2003 Offending, Crime and Justice Survey: alcohol related crime and disorder, Matthews, S. and Richardson, A. (2005) Home Office Findings 261) which looked at the relationship between patterns of alcohol consumption and offending by 18 to 24-year-olds. This study does include some information on alcohol consumption relating to older age groups 25 to 25 and 36 to 65-years-old. The report can be found here:
Mr. Coaker: Over the past 10 years this Government have introduced a wide range of tools and powers to tackle antisocial behaviour which are being used by practitioners to bring relief to communities across the country.
On 8 May we announced a number of new measures to tackle antisocial behaviour by the persistent minority who fail to respond to early interventions as identified by the National Audit Office. These are:
A crackdown on the most troublesome offenders to expose wider criminal behaviour, including benefit fraud, television license evasion, vehicle tax and insurance dodging and non-payment of council tax. Their antisocial behaviour will be the trigger for further investigation to find out if their car tax is up to date, or if they have a TV license, or pay their council tax. This will be done by spreading good practice such as that adopted by Essex police in Operation Leopard.
A joint review by the Home Office and the Department for Transport to look at ways to tackle ASB on public transport. We will consult the public, drivers and other transport staff on their views.
A new national Action Squad of ASB experts who will troubleshoot across the country to focus on targeting areas that are not using the antisocial behaviour measures available to them or where the perception of ASB is low. The public must not suffer needlessly while available remedies go unused. This is backed by £255,000 of new funding.
We have recently introduced measures in the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 to close premises where there is serious and persistent antisocial behaviour which are due to be implemented next year. We have also issued new guidance on how to use the full range of the tools and powers available and to better protect victims and witnesses who take a stand against antisocial behaviour.
The Home Office works with local areas through regional Government offices providing funding through the Area-Based Grant. We also delivered 16 regional workshops nationally to help local practitioners make the best use of the available tools and powers. We will continue to encourage and support local areas in this way.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on how many occasions the Visiting Forces Act 1952 was invoked to prevent prosecution of US military personnel under UK law in each year since 1997. 
The Visiting Forces Act 1952 (the Act) was passed to incorporate the provisions of the NATO Status of Forces Agreement 1951 into United Kingdom law. The Act lays down a formula to decide whether the military authorities of the visiting force or the UK authorities should have the primary right to bring a prosecution. The provisions of the Act therefore do not prevent a prosecution under the UK law, but ensure that an individual only faces charges under one criminal jurisdiction.
Helen Southworth: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many reports of suspected child exploitation were received by the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) from My Space via the US National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in the last 12 months; and what the length of time between each report being filed by a UK customer and its receipt by CEOP in each case was. 
Mr. Coaker: As far as the Home Office is aware, My Space as a US based company comply with US law and regulations on reporting child abuse content to the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). As we understand it this does not extend to contact offences such as grooming. CEOP and NCMEC have a co-operative relationship through the Virtual Global Taskforce (VGT) and CEOP can receive reports on child abuse images from them. In the last reporting year CEOP have received nine reports of child abuse images from NCMEC. We do not hold any information on the original date that the matter was reported to My Space, and so cannot comment on any possible time lapse in that part of the process.
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much her Department spent on carbon offsetting in each of the last three years; and
to which companies payments for carbon offsetting have been made in each such year. 
Mr. Byrne: The Home Office participates in the Government Carbon Offsetting Fund which is co-ordinated by DEFRA. This ensures the Department offsets carbon dioxide emissions from its official air travel. Figures for 2006-07 (the only year for which data have been published) are set out as follows. These data covers some business areas that are now part of Ministry of Justice.
Mr. Byrne: The Home Office has long recognised that staff who undertake voluntary work not only benefit the communities in which they live and work, but also bring back valuable skills and experience into the workplace. The Home Office also recognises that volunteering has an important part to play in the personal development of staff.
During 2005, the year of the volunteer, the Home Office worked with community service volunteers (CSV) and Volunteering England to promote employee volunteering both widely and among its own staff. This involved a series of talks and presentations from CSV and providing advice to match staff to suitable volunteering opportunities, both individually and in teams.
Allowing up to five days paid leave (or the equivalent in hours) to enable staff to undertake volunteering in work time. This can be done on an individual basis or as part of a team;
Allowing additional paid leave to enable staff to take part in volunteering in the public service, such as carrying out school governor duties, magistrate duties, etc;
Recognising the importance of employee volunteering by encouraging managers to include it as a personal development activity in the annual staff appraisal system;
Regularly inviting charities and volunteering organisations into Home Office buildings to hold seminars or set up stands with promotional materials;
Having a dedicated volunteering manager to help staff identify suitable volunteering opportunities;
Promoting volunteering opportunities through features in staff magazines and on the Home Office staff intranet sites;
Ensuring that all new members of staff are made aware of volunteering opportunities;
Maintaining active membership of Westminster Time and Talents, an initiative which matches volunteers with opportunities in the Westminster area;
Funding employees to participate in the Prince's Trust Team programme, both as team leaders and team members;
Running an annual programme of up to 50 three to six month funded secondments to the voluntary sector and encouraging staff to maintain volunteering links with those charities at the end of the secondment;
Encouraging staff to take part in two seasonal volunteering activities: Jeans for Genes day and the Westminster City Challenge.
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