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22 Jun 2009 : Column 608W—continued

Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam

Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what reports he has received of allegations that a British resident, Mrs Balasingham, was involved in terrorist activities on behalf of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. [280682]

Mr. Hanson: We are aware that allegations have been made against a British resident of involvement with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. The investigation and prosecution of such allegations are operational matters for, respectively, the police and the Crown Prosecution Service.

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Offenders: Deportation

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what his policy is on the automatic deportation of foreign prisoners convicted of (a) illegal gun possession and (b) drug dealing. [279616]

Alan Johnson: We are targeting the most harmful first. We have met the Prime Minister’s commitment to remove those that come to the UK and use guns or sell drugs. All Foreign Nationals who are sentenced to 12 months or more for offences relating to violence, sex or drugs are considered for deportation by UKBA. Foreign criminals from outside the EEA found guilty of serious drug and gun offences who receive a custodial sentence will also now be considered for deportation, regardless of length of sentence. Non-EEA nationals sentenced to 12 months or more will now be automatically considered for deportation.

Police: Greater Manchester

Andrew Gwynne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the policing pledge in Greater Manchester. [279774]

Mr. Hanson: It is for individual police forces and authorities to drive implementation of the Policing Pledge and assess its benefits for the public in their area. The Government will hold forces to account for progress through the single top-down targets we have set them to improve public confidence that crime and antisocial behaviour issues are being tackled locally, and in the light of inspection work by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC).

HMIC are currently assessing the progress that each police force in England and Wales is making on delivering the Policing Pledge. They published a report on their early findings from an initial scoping of seven forces on 9 June. The more detailed inspections of the Pledge commenced on 14 April and will conclude by 31 October 2009.


Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 7 May 2009, Official Report, column 373W, on terrorism, how many people have been trained under Project Argus; and what the cost of the Project has been to date. [278446]

Alan Johnson: The police National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) advise that over 900 Project Argus events have been held since January 2007 with attendance at each event falling in the range 20 to 120. NaCTSO estimate that the cost of developing the various versions of Project Argus to date is about £380,000. Project Argus events are generally hosted by the business which requested it, and are delivered by police Counter Terrorism Security Advisers (CTSAs) who also perform other protective security functions.

United Kingdom Human Trafficking Centre

Mr. Vara: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) children and (b) women over 18 years of age have been referred to the United Kingdom Human Trafficking Centre since the introduction of the national referral mechanism. [277123]

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Mr. Alan Campbell: As at the end of April there have been a total of 35 referrals to the competent authorities based in UKHTC and UKBA. Of these 27 were female with nine referrals being of people under the age of 18.


Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) whether national guidance has been issued to police forces on information which should be included in Criminal Records Bureau disclosures; [279867]

(2) what criteria are used by police forces in deciding whether to (a) include and (b) exclude information in relation to a Criminal Records Bureau disclosure. [279868]

Alan Johnson: Section 114 B (4) of Part V of the Police Act 1997 requires that in addition to criminal record information from the Police National Computer (PNC), Enhanced Disclosures should include any other information which a chief police officer considers might be relevant to the job application in question.

This is usually non-conviction information deriving from local force records and is referred to as ‘approved information'; chief officers are obliged to provide such information for Enhanced Disclosures under the Act. Where disclosed, information of this nature is considered by the police to represent a factual record of previous events that an employer in the most sensitive type of occupation should be aware of in making an employment decision affecting the most vulnerable groups of people.

Factors that would be taken into consideration when making decisions to disclose would include, but not be restricted to, the position the individual is currently applying for, the age of the information, whether the information might be directly relevant to the assessment of the person's suitability to work with children and whether it is reasonable to disclose the information, bearing in mind the human rights of the individuals concerned.

In making such assessments, the chief officers follow guidelines including, Home Office circular 5 / 2005— “Criminal Records Bureau: Local Checks by Police Forces for the Purpose of Enhanced Disclosure” and this has been augmented by a process known as the Quality Assurance Framework. The circular makes clear that consideration has been given to a person's right to privacy under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. In this regard there is a section in the circular which details what factors should be considered in determining relevancy.

The Quality Assurance Framework (QAF) is a standardised approach to processing local intelligence information relating to a Disclosure application held by Police Force Disclosure Units. QAF provides a step-by-step process framework that ensures that information is considered consistently and in the same way every time. searches performed on local systems using the QAF Framework and document set produce an audit trail that can be used for quality assurance and to assure QAF compliance.

Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) disclosures were issued for those (a) working with children, (b) applying for an alcohol
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licence, (c) applying to work as a licensed minicab driver, (d) working with vulnerable adults and (e) subject to a CRB check for another reason in each police force area in each of the last 10 years; [279869]

(2) how many Criminal Records Bureau disclosures were issued in each police force area in each of the last 10 years. [279872]

Alan Johnson: Since it's inception in 2002, the CRB has issued over 19 million disclosures and the following table shows this broken down by disclosures issued in each financial year.
















Of these, the following table shows the number of disclosure applications submitted in each financial year since inception that requested:


PoCA checks PoVA checks All lists

























The CRB is unable to provide this information based on employment sectors or broken down by each police force area because the information is not collated in this manner.

These figures do not constitute part of national statistics as they are based on internal management information. The information has not been quality assured under national statistics protocols, should be treated as provisional and is subject to change.


Olympic Games 2012

Bob Spink: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what her latest estimate is of the cost of hosting the London 2012 Olympics (a) athletics events and (b) opening and closing ceremonies at the Olympic Stadium. [279447]

Tessa Jowell: The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) has responsibility for staging the Olympic and Paralympic games including athletics events and the opening and closing ceremonies at the Olympic Stadium.

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The budget announced at the end of 2007 for the Olympic Stadium was £496 million. This was increased to £504 million to include £8 million of structural enhancements to the roof in relation to loading requirements for the opening and closing ceremonies. Potential cost pressures arising from possible scope requirements and design development had been further estimated at an additional £43 million. Those cost pressures have now reduced to £34 million and are included currently in the Anticipated Final Cost published in the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games—Quarterly Economic Report May 2009.

The direct costs associated with staging the events at the stadium including the opening and closing ceremonies come from LOCOG's revenues which are primarily derived from commercial sponsorship, broadcast rights, ticket sales and merchandising/licensing—not from the public purse.

There will be attributable costs to the public purse from London 2012 venues, including the Olympic Stadium and Park. However, these costs such as in security and transport systems have not yet been identified separately for individual events and will form part of the overall security and transport budgets.

Culture, Media and Sport


Mr. Hunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what recent assessment he has made of the viability of a 14 to 25 academic hub for the creative industries. [280657]

Mr. Simon [holding answer 18 June 2009]: The University of the Arts London together with four secondary schools and two further education colleges in the London borough of Newham are currently carrying out a three-year pilot to establish how a 14-25 hub may work.

The evaluation and review of the first year of the Newham Creative Hub will be published in December 2009 and disseminated via the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust, the National Arts Learning Network and the Council for Higher Education in Art and Design networks, to the higher education sector.

My Department will work with the member organisations to produce this report and will consider its findings.

Mr. Hunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of progress on the Creative Britain project; how many apprenticeships have been created under the project; and if he will make a statement. [280659]

Mr. Simon [holding answer 18 June 2009]: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the Member for Leigh (Andy Burnham) to my right hon. Friend the Member for North-West Durham (Hilary Armstrong) on 2 March 2009, Official Report, column 1264W.

Since the Publication of Creative Britain, 400 apprenticeships have started on frameworks associated with the creative industries. These include the Creative Apprenticeships and the Quality Assurance Games Testing.

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This figure does not include apprentices working in the creative industries on non-creative apprenticeships. The National Apprenticeship Service will be able to calculate this information from September.


Adam Price: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what factors were taken into account in determining the Government's targets for levels of BBC enhanced network production in (a) Scotland, (b) Wales and (c) Northern Ireland. [281470]

Mr. Bradshaw: Enhanced network production targets are the responsibility of the BBC Trust, who determine their targets independently of Government. However, the Government look to the BBC Trust to encourage the BBC to seek to exceed its targets in network production.

Broadcasting: Wales

Adam Price: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how much funding will be made available for broadcasting in Wales as a result of proposals contained in the Digital Britain White Paper. [281468]

Mr. Bradshaw: The White Paper sets out various proposals in respect of public service broadcasting, including Independently Funded News Consortia. The total amount of funding made available to the news pilot in Wales is contingent on the consultation on a contained contestable element within the licence fee.

Coastal Areas: Regeneration

Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how much funding has been made available for Bournemouth through the Sea Change Initiative; and what plans there are for further such expenditure. [280913]

Barbara Follett [holding answer 18 June 2009]: To date, Bournemouth has been allocated £455,000 through the Sea Change Programme. Bournemouth would be eligible to apply for funding from the current round of the programme but, as yet, we are not aware of any project being put forward.

Digital Broadcasting

Mr. Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport pursuant to the answer of 3 February 2009, Official Report, column 981W, on digital broadcasting, for what reasons the Ulster region was the only region not to have an indicative take-up figure. [281462]

Mr. Simon [holding answer 19 June 2009]: In February, the sample size used for research in the Ulster region was too small to give a reasonable indication of take-up. However, since then the sample size for Ulster has been increased as the programme moved forward, and the DigitalUK tracker now estimates current take up at 74 per cent.

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