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Written Answers to Questions

The following answers were received between Tuesday 18 September and Monday 8 October 2012

Transport

Departmental Contracts

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his Department's policy is on taking into account when assessing tenders submitted for departmental contracts the (a) apprenticeship schemes, (b) policies on employment of paid interns and (c) policies of payment of at least the living wage of each bidding company. [120789]

Mr Simon Burns: UK public procurement policy is to award contracts on the basis of value for money, which means the optimum combination of cost and quality over the lifetime of the project. Public sector procurers are required to assess value for money from the perspective of the contracting authority using criteria linked to the subject matter of the contract, including compliance with the published specification.

Wider socio-economic benefits that accrue to the contracting authority can be taken into account at tender evaluation stage if they relate to the subject matter of a contract from the point of view of the contracting authority. For example, the Highways Agency assesses organisation/bidder approach to apprenticeship schemes in two ways:

(i) At organisation level, the pre-qualification process for major contracts tests a number of key areas, one of which is 'Inclusion'. This requires the supply chain to create opportunities to bring people into the workplace, and for all employees to be able to develop their skills and capabilities to the full within a diverse work force.

(ii) Highways Agency's Asset Support and major project contracts require the contractor to ensure that at least one employee per £20 million paid to the contractor, and employed by the contractor or any subcontractor or supplier of the contractor, is on a formal apprenticeship programme under which he/she gets on and off the job training and gains a nationally recognised qualification. The contractor must also provide work experience placements for 14 to 16-year-olds, work experience/work trial placements for other ages, student sandwich/gap year placements and graduate placements in relation to these contracts.

Communities and Local Government

Charities

Steve Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what his Department's policy is on the (a) grant to and (b) use by registered charities of funding from his Department for the purposes of advocacy, lobbying or campaigning; and if he will make a statement. [121408]

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Brandon Lewis: Ministers believe that it is inappropriate for taxpayers' money to subsidise such campaigning activity.

Grants to external bodies outline how the funds should be spent and typically include a standard condition that the funds provided should not be spent on activities of a political nature. If hon. Members have concerns that grant recipients are acting inappropriately, Ministers would welcome this being brought to our attention. More broadly, since May 2010, my Department has taken steps to:

Cancel all lobbying contracts held by our Department's public bodies, to stop the practice (common under the last Administration) of government lobbying government;

Introduce a new “Code of Recommended Practice on Local Authority Publicity” to tackle the use of lobbyists by local authorities;

Publish online all departmental and arm’s length body spending over £500 (now moving to £250) to facilitate greater public scrutiny and accountability of the organisations we fund.

The activities of registered charities are also governed by the Charities Act and guidance issued by the Charity Commission.

Child Protection

Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps the Troubled Families Unit plans to take to evaluate work with families in cases were there is (a) serious concern about children being neglected and (b) families where children have children protection plans in place due to neglect. [121053]

Brandon Lewis: The Government is currently developing plans for evaluating the Troubled Families programme as a whole. We expect that child neglect will be a problem in a significant number of these families, and some will have children on Child Protection Plans, or who have been taken into care because of abuse or neglect. Some authorities are specifically choosing to prioritise these issues in choosing which families to work with, from among those who meet the national criteria.

Diabetes

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what discussions his Department has had with the Department of Health on provision for local government diabetes prevention programmes. [121446]

Brandon Lewis: Ministers and officials in the Department for Communities and Local Government regularly meet colleagues from the Department of Health to discuss a range of matters.

Mayors

Mr Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if he will provide guidance to local authorities on (a) transitional governance arrangements and (b) budget setting processes in the event of their electorate voting against continuing with directly elected mayoral systems in November 2012; and if he will make a statement. [121606]

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Brandon Lewis: Implementing changes to governance arrangements is a local matter. It is for the council concerned to adopt such transitional arrangements and budget setting processes as it thinks fit within the statutory framework, which provides that, where the electorate votes to move from the mayoral model, the mayor continues to hold office until the end of his or her term.

Pay

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the highest paid position is in (a) his Department and (b) his Department's agencies. [121621]

Brandon Lewis: The highest paid position in the Department for Communities and Local Government is that of the Permanent Secretary.

The highest paid position in each of the Department's agencies is that of the Chief Executive.

The salaries of senior staff in Department for Communities and Local Government are publicly available on the Department for Communities and Local Government website and Data.gov.uk.

This information can be found at:

http://www.communities.gov.uk/corporate/transparencyingovernment/staffdata/

Information is also published in the Department's 2011-12 Annual Report and Accounts. This can be found at:

http://www.communities.gov.uk/publications/corporate/annualreport1112

Information on the salaries of senior staff in the Department's agencies can also be found on Data.gov.uk and in their respective 2011-12 Annual Reports and Accounts.

Planning Permission

Nadine Dorries: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps he plans to take to ensure the safeguarding of landscapes and habitats following the proposed relaxation of planning requirements. [121416]

Nick Boles: We are not changing the strong protections provided by the National Planning Policy Framework. In the framework we have set out how the planning system, in providing for sustainable development, should contribute to and enhance the natural environment, including through protecting valued landscapes and providing net gains in biodiversity where possible.

Departmental Contracts

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what the name is of each company with which his Department has a contract; what the monetary value of each such contract is; and what is provided to his Department under the terms of the contract; [120779]

(2) what his Department's policy is on taking into account when assessing tenders submitted for departmental contracts the (a) apprenticeship schemes, (b) policies on employment of paid interns and (c) policies of payment of at least the living wage of each bidding company. [120785]

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Brandon Lewis: The information about the Department's live contracts over the value of £20,000 with suppliers name, monetary values and a brief description of the contracts has now been deposited in the Library of the House. A substantial number of the contracts were signed under previous Administrations.

We have been unable to provide details of contracts that may have been awarded with a value of less than £20,000 as locating, retrieving and extracting all of that expenditure would have been at a disproportionate cost.

However as part of the Government's Transparency agenda, the Department is publishing all contracts awarded over the value of £10,000 (from January 2011) on the Contracts Finder website at

www.contractsfinder.businesslink.gov.uk

Moreover, as part of my Department's broader transparency agenda, we are currently taking steps to start publishing online new contracts over £500.

On assessing tenders for departmental contracts, our policy is to consider whether apprenticeships, living wage and use of interns are relevant to the purpose of the contract and therefore to be included within evaluation criteria on a case-by-case basis.

Social Rented Housing: Antisocial Behaviour Orders

Andrew Stephenson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what information his Department holds on the number of evictions from (a) local authority and (b) social housing following the imposition of an antisocial behaviour order in each of the last five years. [121387]

Mr Prisk: The Department does not hold information on the number of tenants evicted from social housing who had previously received an antisocial behaviour order.

The number of evictions by private registered providers in England, with more than 1,000 units of stock, for reasons including antisocial behaviour, for the latest five years for which data are available, is as follows:

 Number

2006-07

1,695

2007-08

2,081

2008-09

1,768

2009-10

1,523

2010-11

1,619

The number of evictions by local authority landlords in England, for reasons including antisocial behaviour, in the year to 31 March 2011 was 470. Data are not available for other years.

Defence

Afghanistan

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent assessment he has made of the security situation in Helmand Province; and if he will make a statement. [120581]

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Mr Philip Hammond: Afghan and international forces operating in Helmand continue to make tangible progress. Following the launch of the third tranche, nine of the 14 districts in Helmand have begun the transition process, including all three districts within Task Force Helmand—the UK's area of operations.

Violence levels are down in those districts where transition is already under way and is increasingly displaced from the province's key population centres where the majority of Helmand live.

This is a clear demonstration of the growing capability and confidence of the Afghans to effectively manage their own security now and in the future once the International Security Assistance Force has completed its mission when parts of Helmand Province are likely to remain contested.

Challenges remain, and there is still work to be done, but unmistakable progress has, and continues, to be made; as security takes root, markets and schools are opening, creating new opportunities for the Afghan people.

Armed Forces: Deployment

Martin Horwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what UK (a) military and (b) other personnel (i) have been and (ii) are deployed under Common Foreign and Security Policy or Common Security and Defence Policy operations; and if he will make a statement. [121356]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 18 September 2012]: The UK has personnel, both military and civilian, currently deployed on a number of missions and operations as part of the EU's Common Security and Defence Policy activity. The current numbers for those operations and missions where the UK makes a contribution are as follows:

EUTM Somalia—EU training of Somali national security forces: two military;

Op Althea Bosnia—EU training and executive security force: six military;

EUCAP NESTOR—Regional maritime capacity building in the Horn of Africa: two civilians;

EULEX Kosovo—Executive and mentoring activity in the rule of law: 37 civilians;

EUMM Georgia—EU monitoring mission focused on 12 August and 8 September 2008 ceasefires: 17 civilians;

EUPOL Afghanistan—Training and mentoring of Afghan Ministry of Interior: 12 civilians;

EUPOL COPPS West Bank—Support to the Palestinian Authority on wider rule of law issues: four civilians;

EU JUST LEX Iraq—Strengthening Iraqi rule of law and respect for human rights: six civilians;

EUSEC DRC—Supporting Congolese reform of their armed forces, working towards national security and social and economic development: three civilians.

Details are not centrally held of UK military and other personnel deployed on previous CSDP missions and operations.

The information will take time to collate. I will write to the hon. Member as soon as it is available.

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Armed Forces: Education

Steve McCabe: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many military personnel received training in (a) Farsi or Dari, (b) Arabic, (c) Urdu and (d) Mandarin in each year since 2008. [119207]

Mr Francois [holding answer 5 September 2012]: The information available is set out in the following table:

Number of students taught per year(1)
 20082009201020112012

Farsi

20

10

10

20

20

Arabic

100

80

30

30

40

Urdu

10

10

10

10

10

Mandarin

10

10

10

10

10

Dari

260

270

250

270

280

(1) Figures are rounded to the nearest 10 and include only those who complete their training in the relevant year.

The number of students taught each year covers a wide range of linguistic ability. Higher level training (for professional and expert qualifications) enables trusted translation. Lower level training enables linguists to undertake basic military business in limited scenarios where accuracy is not as critical.

Armed Forces: Germany

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what estimate he has made of the (a) up- front and (b) long-term costs associated with the re-basing of the elements of the armed forces based in Germany; [120467]

(2) what estimate he has made of long-term savings arising from the re-basing of those elements of the armed forces based in Germany. [121041]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 11 September 2012]: I refer the right hon. Member to the Statement made by the Secretary of State for Defence, the right hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond) on 5 July 2012, Official Report, column 66WS, following which Ministry of Defence (MOD) officials continue to work on the optimum basing solution for the Army's return from Germany and the associated costs and savings.

Detailed work into the financial savings to be made from the move of personnel from Germany to the UK is still ongoing. Once the re-basing is complete, the Department currently expects to make savings in the region of £79 million, £95 million and £46 million on allowances, education and medical support respectively.

We would also expect the Army's return from Germany to contribute significantly to the UK economy, since we estimate wages and other local costs of around £650 million per annum are currently spent in Germany. We expect the further work under way to refine these savings, and to determine the likely costs.

Armed Forces: Health Services

Mr Holloway: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what treatments are used to treat soldiers diagnosed as suffering from mild traumatic brain injury. [121280]

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Mr Francois: The Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre (DMRC) at Headley Court is the Defence Medical Services (DMS) centre of expertise for the treatment of symptoms associated with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). The DMS policy for the treatment of mTBI is based on the World Health Organisation guidelines, whereby the principle of treatment is to foster natural recovery by reassurance, education, monitoring and by reinforcing an expectation of rapid recovery.

Most personnel recover completely from concussion; symptoms usually begin to improve within hours and typically resolve completely within days to weeks. There is no specific drug treatment for the management of mTBI but simple analgesics (e.g. paracetamol) may be used for headache symptoms.

Following a diagnosis of mTBI, the treatment programme consists of four phases. Personnel are entered sequentially into each stage but only progress to the next phase if their symptoms remain. Upon successful completion of each phase the aim is to return the patient to work.

Phase one is primarily education about the effects of mTBI and coping measures that personnel are advised to use.

Phase two lasts for approximately three months and is conducted with an element of face-to-face therapy at the DMRC but is mainly co-ordinated via web and phone-based therapy. The emphasis is on strategy, training, education and referral to specialist services when appropriate.

Phase three is conducted entirely at the DMRC as an intensive cognitive behavioural/psychological education group. The emphasis here is on education, resilience, adjustment, pacing and relaxation. Intensive training is provided for each of these aspects with the aim of helping the patient to find effective methods to manage their symptoms.

Phase four consists of ongoing follow-up and support, and is conducted primarily via phone and web-based support.

An active military research programme continues at the DMRC to investigate concussion/mTBI, including blast related injury.

Armed Forces: Religion

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many employees of his Department are employed within the Chaplaincy Department for each (a) faith and (b) denomination. [121361]

Mr Francois: All chaplains employed by the Ministry of Defence are there to provide spiritual leadership, pastoral care and moral guidance to all personnel and their families of all faiths and none.

The following tables provide details of the number of chaplains employed by the MOD for each faith and denomination. The figures do not include support staff within the Chaplaincy Department.

Regular armed forces chaplains (Christian)
DenominationTotal

Methodist

27

Church of Scotland

31

Roman Catholic

28

Baptist

23

United Reform Church

7

Assemblies of God

1

Presbyterian

1

Salvation Army

1

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Free Church of Scotland

1

Church of England

155

Total

275

World faith army reserve chaplains
FaithTotal

Jewish chaplain

1

World faith civilian chaplains
FaithTotal

Sikh chaplain

1

Muslim chaplain

1

Hindu chaplain

1

Buddhist chaplain

1

Total

4

Assets

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assets his Department has sold and leased back over the last 12 months; what the sale price was of each asset so sold; and what estimate his Department has made of the cost to the public purse of leasing back each such asset over the period of the lease. [116762]

Mr Francois: The Ministry of Defence has sold and leased back one building block in Bath over the past 12 months. The sale price was some £4 million, and there was no additional cost to the public purse of the short-term leaseback, which enabled the building to be vacated in good order.

AWE Aldermaston

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many incidents at the Atomic Weapons Establishment Aldermaston have resulted in the attendance of the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service in each year from August 2010; and on what dates each such incident occurred. [118705]

Mr Dunne: Since August 2010, there have been three incidents at the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) Aldermaston site where the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service (RBFRS) have been requested to attend. These occurred on 3 August 2010, 12 April 2012 and 16 August 2012.

BAE Systems

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library a copy of document number (a) 24, (b) 25, (c) 26, (d) 27, (e) 28 and (f) 29 listed in schedule 9 of his Department's 2009 Terms of Business Agreement with BAE Systems. [106730]

Peter Luff: The Ministry of Defence will need to consult BAE Systems Maritime—Naval Ships to consider release of the documents requested. I will write to the hon. Member when this consultation has been completed.

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Substantive answer from Philip Dunne to Angus Robertson:

On 16 May 2012 in response to Parliamentary Question (Official Report, column 166W) my predecessor Peter Luff MP (Mid Worcestershire), undertook to provide a substantive reply to your question to place in the library of the House of Commons a number of documents referenced in Schedule 9 of the Department's 2009 Terms of Business Agreement with BAE Systems (BAES). You may recall that before I could provide you with a final answer, it was necessary to review the documents to determine whether their release would prejudice the commercial position of either the Ministry of Defence (MOD) or the company. This review involved detailed consultation with BAES.

I can advise you that this work is now complete and it has been determined that release of the documents at this time is likely to prejudice the commercial position of both the company and the MOD. I regret therefore that I am unable to release the documents you have requested and that you have had to wait so long to receive this reply to your original question.

Centre for Defence Enterprise

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent assessment he has made of the work of the Centre for Defence Enterprise; and if he will make a statement. [121392]

Mr Dunne [holding answer 18 September 2012]: The role of the Centre for Defence Enterprise (CDE) was reviewed as part of the consultation process for the White Paper, National Security through Technology, which was published on 1 February 2012 (Cm 8278). The White Paper committed to building on the CDE's success in providing efficient access to innovation, to broaden its remit to cover both the defence and security domains, and for CDE to provide more support to small and medium-sized enterprises in understanding how the Ministry of Defence operates, the development of routes to market for potential defence and security products, and to enhance exploitation mechanisms between CDE and defence suppliers.

David Laws

Thomas Docherty: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether the Minister of State in the Cabinet Office, the right hon. Member for Yeovil, has been issued with a security pass for his Department's main building; and on what date any such pass was issued. [121506]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 18 September 2012]: The right hon. Member for Yeovil (Mr Laws) has not been issued with a security pass for regular and unescorted access to the Ministry of Defence Main Building.

The right hon. Member for Yeovil was issued with a day's visitor badge when he visited the MOD Main Building on 12 September 2005, 7 July 2008, 5 December 2008, 6 January 2010 and 26 May 2010.

Defence Equipment

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which items in the equipment programme have had their in-service delivery dates delayed since May 2010. [116930]

Mr Philip Hammond: In-service dates for new equipment are formally set at the Main Gate investment approval point.

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The Astute build programme was delayed in Planning Round 11, in order to manage the industrial work programme implications of the decision to defer a final decision on the replacement of the deterrent The full implications of this measure in terms of programme delays and costs can be found in the National Audit Office's Major Projects Report 2011. This measure should be considered alongside the decision in the Strategic Defence and Security Review to establish the Submarine Enterprise Performance Programme, which is expected to deliver more than £900 million of savings over the decade.

In addition, two further new equipment procurement projects, which had previously passed their Main Gate approvals, have been delayed. Disclosure of further information at this stage would prejudice the Department's commercial interests.

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the near cash projected spending on the Equipment Plan and Equipment Support Plan is for each year to 2016. [119729]

Mr Philip Hammond: As at the end of Planning Round 2012, the planned spend on the Equipment Procurement and Equipment Support Plans is shown in the following table.

£ million
 Financial year
 2012-132013-142014-152015-16

Equipment procurement

5,788

6,129

6,219

7,278

Equipment support

7,452

7,650

8,105

8,153

All figures are in near cash and to the nearest £ million.

HMS Dragon

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much has been spent on HMS Dragon since it was handed over to the Royal Navy for sea trials. [121350]

Mr Francois: HMS Dragon was accepted off contract by the Ministry of Defence from BAE Systems Maritime—Naval Ships on 31 August 2011. The ship then undertook eight months of sea trials, led by the Defence Equipment and Support organisation before being declared in-service with the Royal Navy on 27 April 2012. The cost for this period, including the cost of supporting and maintaining the ship, conducting the trials and of the associated trials ranges and targets was approximately £6 million (excluding the cost of fuel and manpower).

Support to HMS Dragon is now provided through the Type 45 In-Service Support Contract. Under this service provision contract, which covers the class of vessels, costs are not attributable to individual ships. It is, therefore, not possible to separately identify the full cost of supporting HMS Dragon since it entered service in April 2012.

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) for how much time HMS Dragon has been able to complete sea duties as part of the Royal Navy fleet since it has been fully in service; [121351]

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(2) for how long HMS Dragon has not been at sea since it entered service with the Royal Navy. [121413]

Mr Dunne: HMS Dragon entered service with the Royal Navy on 27 April 2012. Up to 27 August 2012, she had spent 25 days at sea and 98 days alongside in accordance with her programme. She is currently undertaking some defect rectification and is expected to sail again in early October 2012.

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost is of works to be carried out on the engine and the gearbox of HMS Dragon; and from which budget these costs will be funded. [121352]

Mr Francois: The work to repair HMS Dragon's WR21 engine is the subject of warranty action by the shipbuilder, BAE Systems Maritime—Naval Ships. It has been established that the repairs do not involve work on the gearbox.

The work to remove and replace the engine parts is ongoing and as such the final cost is not yet known.

Military Aid

Mr Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his policy is on military aid to the civil authorities. [121149]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 17 September 2012]: The Ministry of Defence considers all requests made for military support on a case by case basis, in line with Military Aid to the Civil Authority arrangements. Support may be provided where the civil authorities lack the capability or capacity to act in a timely manner or as a result of the scale of an event.

Military Aircraft

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the value of maintenance contracts for (a) Globemaster, (b) Hercules, (c) Hawk, (d) Puma, (e) Merlin, (f) Lynx and (g) Chinook aircraft was in each of the last three years. [120281]

Mr Dunne: Expenditure against the principal support and maintenance contracts for each type of aircraft in each of the last three financial years is shown in the following table:

£ million(1)
 Financial years
Aircraft type2009-102010-112011-12

C17 Globemaster

35

30

23

Hercules

120

115

120

Hawk TMk1/Mk2

57

56

60

Puma

20

21

17

Merlin (both variants)

117

127

118

Lynx

79

67

63

Chinook

56

57

78

(1 )Approximate.

All costs shown are exclusive of VAT.

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These aircraft are supported through a range of different support contracts and consequently the scope of work undertaken varies. All of the above figures include the support and maintenance of both aircraft and engine, but some expenditure is associated with, for example, the support of the associated synthetic training solution or the cost of post-design services and modifications.

Child Care

Owen Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many childcare places his Department provides on its estate; what the cost is of providing such places; how many such places his Department provided in 2010; what the cost was of providing such places in 2010; what plans he has for changes in the provision of such childcare places; and what the number of places will be once any such changes have been implemented. [121264]

Mr Francois: Child care is primarily the responsibility of local authorities and they have a remit to ensure that there is sufficient provision to meet the requirements of the parents in their area. However, it is Ministry of Defence (MOD) policy to encourage the development of affordable, quality child care provision for all MOD employees, both military and civilian, in the vicinity of its sites and bases.

This has been delegated to Top Level Budget Holders and Agency Chief Executives who are responsible for assessing the demand for child care support and for funding and establishing its provision. Such schemes are usually managed locally, down to garrison or regimental level for units and military families.

The detailed information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Departmental Contracts

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what rate of inflation was used in the calculation of the necessary rise in the post-2015 defence budget needed to meet the 10-year equipment budget plan. [119936]

Mr Dunne [holding answer 7 September 2012]:The rate of inflation used in the Ministry of Defence calculations relating to the defence budget is the gross domestic product deflator forecast produced by the Office for Budgetary Responsibility. At the beginning of Planning Round 12 this was 2.7% for financial years from 2013-14 onwards.

Bridget Phillipson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) which of his Department's programmes have been delayed between July 2011 and May 2012; when each programme has been delayed (a) from and (b) until; and what the total projected saving is for each programme; [109371]

(2) which of his Department's programmes have been delayed since May 2010; and what the total projected saving is; [109398]

(3) which of his Department's programmes have been delayed since May 2010; when each programme has been delayed (a) from and (b) until; and what the total projected saving is for each programme. [109399]

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Peter Luff: The information requested will take time to collate and I will write to the hon. Member when the data are available.

Substantive answer from Philip Hammond to Bridget Phillipson:

On 18 June, Peter Luff undertook to write to you regarding delays and deletions of projects within the MOD's Equipment Programme.

In answering your question, I have focused on major projects (i.e. those spending more than £20 million) which are past their Main Gate investment approval point. This is the stage at which the Performance, Time and Cost envelope is formally set and is consistent with the basis on which project performance information is reported to Parliament through the Major Projects Reports.

On that basis, the projects affected were:

Cancellation of the Nimrod MRA4 aircraft in Planning Round 11. Expected savings from the deletion of this programme are around £2 billion;

The Astute build programme was delayed in Planning Round 11, in order to manage the industrial work programme implications of the decision to defer a final decision on the replacement of the deterrent. The full implications of this measure in terms of programme delays and costs can be found in the NAO's Major Projects Report 2011. This measure should be considered alongside the decision in the SDSR to establish the Submarine Enterprise Performance Programme, which is expected to deliver more than £900 million of savings over the decade;

Two other projects which were post Main-Gate have been delayed. The details of these decisions are commercially sensitive and their release could prejudice the Department's negotiations with its industrial partners.

Such decisions were necessary in order to balance the Department's books and to transform an overheated and unaffordable equipment programme into one that is both balanced and affordable. This, together with the contingency provision of more than £4 billion and around £8 billion of unallocated provision, means that the MOD can afford everything on contract and all political commitments, and can be confident that we will deliver the Future Force 2020 set out in the SDSR.

Alison Seabeck: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which equipment contracts he has renegotiated since 2010; and what estimate he has made of the overall amount saved. [115602]

Mr Dunne: Ministry of Defence (MOD) contracts are negotiated and amended as necessary during the course of normal business. In terms of which equipment contracts were renegotiated following the strategic defence and security review, it would be inappropriate to comment on the specific contracts as the details of each negotiation are commercial in confidence, but I can confirm MOD is well on track to achieve its overall savings target.

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the name is of each company with which his Department has a contract; what the monetary value of each such contract is; and what is provided to his Department under the terms of the contract. [120768]

Mr Dunne: As of 11 September 2012, there were 15,522 live contracts on the Ministry of Defence contracts database with a total value of £206.4 billion. These are let with 4,341 contractors. The products or services provided under these contracts can be broadly grouped under 13 'Type of Work' categories (shown in the

8 Oct 2012 : Column 666W

following table). The information requested for each individual contract is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

This analysis relates to contracts administered through our central system and excludes contracts placed by the MOD's trading funds and Executive non-departmental public bodies, purchases through the Government Procurement Card and miscellaneous transactions.

The following table also shows a breakdown of the contracts by the type of work, where it is recorded.

Type of work categoryNumber of contracts

Concept

174

Assessment

210

Demonstration

186

Manufacture

1,647

In-Service

4,929

Disposal

43

Project Support

1,047

External Assistance

777

Hire/Lease

107

Multi Activity Contract (MAC)

104

Provision of Services

3,001

Defence Estates

332

Provision of Utilities

71

Where no 'type of work' boxes were ticked

2,166

Where more than one 'type of work' box was ticked

728

Total number of contracts held

15,522

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his Department's policy is on taking into account when assessing tenders submitted for departmental contracts the (a) apprenticeship schemes, (b) policies on employment of paid interns and (c) policies of payment of at least the living wage of each bidding company. [120797]

Mr Dunne: Ministry of Defence (MOD) policy on assessing approaches to apprenticeship schemes in tenders is to follow the guidance "Promoting Skills in Public Procurement", published by Office of Government Commerce in 2009. The MOD does not have a specific policy which requires procurement staff to assess bidder policy on paying interns or payment of a "living" wage.

Royal Fleet Auxiliary

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the ability of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Fort Class fleet replenishment ships to support the new Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers. [121370]

Mr Dunne [holding answer 18 September 2012]: The Royal Fleet Auxiliary Fort Classes of ship will have the capability to transfer stores to the Queen Elizabeth Class (QEC) aircraft carriers, when a planned modification to the existing Replenishment at Sea rigs has been completed. This modification is required because of the dimensions of the QEC, which have significantly higher replenishment positions than the current in-service vessels.

8 Oct 2012 : Column 667W

The modifications are expected to be completed in time for the planned entry into service of the first of the QEC carriers.

Territorial Army

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent assessment he has made of level of officer recruitment, training and retention in the Territorial Army; and if he will make a statement. [121393]

Mr Francois [holding answer 18 September 2012]: It is assessed that the Army will achieve its recruiting target of 91 for direct entry TA officers in 2012-13.

As part of the Future Reserves 2020, the Army plan to spend £5 million in financial year (FY) 2012-13 on the Territorial Army (TA) recruiting campaign and are now drawing up plans for the marketing campaigns in FY 2013-14.

As a result of TA marketing activity that has already been undertaken, the Army has received a relatively high level of TA officer initial inquiries and it is assessed that this will have a positive impact on future recruitment, the targets for which are due to increase to 155 for 2013-14 and 240 thereafter until 2016.

A major review of the TA officer recruiting and training process was undertaken in 2011 in order to improve the efficiency and output of the TA officer training pipeline. We have also allocated an additional £1.8 billion over 10 years to ensure that reservists will receive the equipment and the training they need to meet their future roles.

The importance of retaining individuals who have been recruited and trained is fully appreciated and prioritised accordingly. The Ministry of Defence is engaging in a consultation process focusing on Defence's relationship with employers and how the mutual needs of the employer, reservist employee and Defence can best be accommodated. The consultation will consider the potential need for changes to legislation and the terms and conditions under which reservists serve.

UK National Codification Bureau

Anas Sarwar: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he expects the results of his Department's consultation on Kentigern House to be published; and when he expects a decision to be made on the relocation of UK National Codification Bureau staff. [121251]

Mr Francois [holding answer 17 September 2012]: The Ministry of Defence is considering the future size and shape of the UK National Codification Bureau and the Engineering and Through Life Support Team. A decision on the future of both organisations is expected to be announced shortly. Recognised trade union consultations are being undertaken.

Unmanned Air Vehicles

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has for future research funding for unmanned air vehicles. [121373]

8 Oct 2012 : Column 668W

Mr Dunne [holding answer 18 September 2012]: In March 2011, the Ministry of Defence endorsed an unmanned air systems research and development pipeline, a five-year programme with funding in the region of £30 million per year.

Veterans: Radiation Exposure

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent assessment he has made of the health of nuclear test veterans and their offspring as a result of detonations at Christmas Island between 1957 and 1958. [121519]

Mr Francois: In October 2011, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) announced the publication of the final report following the Health Needs Audit, the aim of which was to identify the health experiences, concerns and health and social care needs of British Nuclear Test Veterans.

The MOD continues to work closely with colleagues in the Department of Health and representatives of the British Nuclear Test Veterans Association to take forward suggestions included in the final Health Needs Audit report.

Home Department

Antisocial Behaviour Orders: Social Rented Housing

Andrew Stephenson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people were evicted from their homes as a result of breach of an antisocial behaviour order in each of the last five years. [121388]

Mr Prisk: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Communities and Local Government.

I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave him today to PQ 121387.

International Development

Burma: Thailand

Mr Burrowes: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what reports she has received on refugees from Burma in camps in Thailand having to leave the camps due to reductions in funding. [121583]

Mr Duncan: We have had no reports from the Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) or other implementing partners relating to the number of refugees leaving camps in Thailand as a direct result of reductions in funding. According to TBBC's latest biannual report (January to June 2012), at the end of June 2012 verified refugee numbers had increased to 142,192 as compared to 137,157 at the end of December 2011.

Mr Burrowes: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment she has made of the effect of the level of rations provided to children in refugee camps on the Thailand-Burma border on levels of malnutrition. [121584]

Mr Duncan: The Thai-Burma Border Consortium last conducted a Nutrition Surveillance for children aged 6-59 months in all camps in 2011. It made a number of recommendations to improve nutrition education

8 Oct 2012 : Column 669W

programmes, promote maternal health and strengthen early detection and treatment of acute malnutrition in young children. The direct effect of the most recent changes in the level of rations provided to children in the nine refugee camps in Thailand on levels of malnutrition is yet to be formally assessed.

Charities

Steve Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what her policy is on the (a) grant to and (b) use by registered charities of funding from her Department for the purposes of advocacy, lobbying or campaigning; and if she will make a statement. [121406]

Mr Duncan: As a matter of principle, funding from DFID cannot be awarded to initiatives that involve direct lobbying of the UK Government or of international organisations of which the UK Government is a member. However, funding can be used by registered charities for advocacy work in developing countries where it is an integral part of projects delivering poverty reduction for poor people. This information is already in the public domain, for example in DFID funding guidelines.

Haiti

David Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what plans she has to provide assistance to reduce the spread of cholera in Haiti. [121142]

Mr Duncan: DFID provided humanitarian assistance to Haiti in 2010-11 after the earthquake and to help fight cholera. This helped to provide a million people with food, shelter, clean water and medical care, including providing 200,000 people with cholera treatment and prevention.

DFID does not have a bilateral aid programme in Haiti. Our contribution towards reconstruction and development, including water, sanitation and health care, is through our share of the programmes of multilateral agencies such as the World Bank, United Nations and European Union. This share amounts to around £70 million this year, including peacekeeping. My Department continues to monitor the situation in Haiti, but there are no plans to provide additional assistance.

Pay

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the highest paid position is in (a) her Department and (b) her Department's agencies. [121628]

Mr Duncan: The highest paid position within DFID is permanent secretary. DFID does not have any agencies.

Treasury

Blood Diseases

Chris Ruane: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the cost to the economy of deaths caused by sepsis. [121221]

Dr Poulter: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department of Health.

The Department has no immediate plans to estimate the costs to the economy specifically related to sepsis.

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Work and Pensions

Disability Living Allowance

Paul Maynard: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many disability living allowance claimants have had their entitlement uprated after a reassessment in the last 12 months. [120813]

Esther McVey: The information requested is contained in the following table:

Disability living allowance claims that have been reassessed in Great Britain between the period covering September 2011 to August 2012
 Number

Reconsideration—varied

1,360

Reconsideration—increased

16,187

Reconsideration—allowed

40,726

Total successful reconsideration decisions

28,273

Supersession—varied

4,180

Supersession—increased

52,322

Supersession—allowed

25,859

Total successful supersession decisions

82,361

Total successful decisions

140,634

Notes: 1.Successful decisions are all decisions that are favourable to the customer. 2. Successful decisions for DLA reconsiderations and supersessions have been included. 3. Supersession means changing a decision of a decision maker (DM) because of a change of circumstances and replacing it from a later date than the original. Certain conditions have to be satisfied before a decision can be superseded. There is no time limit for making an application for supersession. 4. A reconsideration occurs when the customer challenges a decision and the DM reconsiders it, and revises the decision if it is appropriate to do so. The reconsideration process allows the DM to re-examine the facts of the case, the law used and other issues such as how discretion was applied when making a decision. Revising a decision at an early stage, for example where an appeal is made, can avoid the need for cases to proceed to a formal tribunal hearing. 5. Varied—the award changes from lower rate care to lower rate mobility or vice versa. 6. Increased—the decision is advantageous to the customer, i.e. the overall amount of benefit is increased. 7. Allowed—a disallowance of one or both components becomes an award of benefit. Source: Department for Work and Pensions—RDA60209 and RDA60205 reports—DLA management information statistics

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people claiming disability allowance (a) in Kilmarnock and Loudoun constituency, (b) in Scotland and (c) nationally had their entitlement uprated after a reassessment in the last 12 months. [121136]

Esther McVey: The information is not available in the format requested. Such information as is available is contained in the following table. The information on the numbers of people claiming disability living allowance in Kilmarnock and Loudoun constituency and Scotland whose entitlement has been uprated in the last 12 months is not collated centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

8 Oct 2012 : Column 671W

Disability living allowance claims that have been reassessed in Great Britain between the period covering September 2011 to August 2012
 Number

Reconsideration—varied

1,360

Reconsideration—increased

16,187

Reconsideration—allowed

40,726

Total successful reconsideration decisions

28,273

Supersession—varied

4,180

Supersession—increased

52,322

Supersession—allowed

25,859

Total successful supersession decisions

82,361

Total successful decisions

140,634

Notes: 1. Successful decisions are all decisions that are favourable to the customer. 2. Successful decisions for DLA reconsiderations and supersessions have been included. 3. Supersession means changing a decision of a decision maker (DM) because of a change of circumstances and replacing it from a later date than the original. Certain conditions have to be satisfied before a decision can be superseded. There is no time limit for making an application for supersession. 4. A reconsideration occurs when the customer challenges a decision and the DM reconsiders it, and revises the decision if it is appropriate to do so. The reconsideration process allows the DM to re-examine the facts of the case, the law used and other issues such as how discretion was applied when making a decision. Revising a decision at an early stage, for example where an appeal is made, can avoid the need for cases to proceed to a formal tribunal hearing. 5. Varied—the award changes from lower rate care to lower rate mobility or vice versa. 6. Increased—the decision is advantageous to the customer, i.e. the overall amount of benefit is increased. 7. Allowed—a disallowance of one or both components becomes an award of benefit. Source: Department for Work and Pensions—RDA60209 and RDA60205 reports—DLA management information statistics

Olympic Games 2012

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether (a) Ministers and (b) officials from his Department used the Olympic Route Network for travelling during the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. [121010]

Mr Hoban: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport will publish details of Government use of tickets and hospitality in the autumn, this will include use of transport services which operated on the Olympic or Paralympic Route Networks.

Pay

Rachel Reeves: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate he has made of the likely (a) highest, (b) median, (c) median full-time equivalent and (d) lowest full-time equivalent salary to be paid by his Department in 2012-13. [120837]

Mr Hoban: The information is as follows:

Table A shows the salaries for the Department for Work and Pensions, excluding the Child Maintenance Group, which integrated into the Department from 1 August 2012.

Table B shows the salaries for the Department for Work and Pensions, including the Child Maintenance Group.

8 Oct 2012 : Column 672W

All figures relate to base salary and are estimates for 2012-13:

Table A
 2012-13£

Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) excluding the Child Maintenance Group

Highest

184,250

 

Median

18,897

 

Median FTE

21,755

 

Lowest

14,550

Table B
 2012-13£

Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) including the Child Maintenance Group

Highest

184,250

 

Median

18,844

 

Median FTE

21,680

 

Lowest

14,550

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the highest paid position is in (a) his Department and (b) his Department's agencies. [121618]

Mr Hoban: The highest paid position is the position of ‘DWP Information Technology Director General and Chief Information Officer’. The Department no longer has any agencies.

Pension Funds

Jackie Doyle-Price: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what plans he has to review the governance responsibilities of trustees of pension funds; and if he will make a statement. [121095]

Steve Webb: Professor Kay published the final report of his independent review, “UK equity markets and long-term decision making” on 23 July, and the governance arrangements which apply to pension funds is one of the areas which was considered in the report. The Government is considering Professor Kay's recommendations in depth before responding later this year, and it would not therefore be appropriate to comment in detail on the recommendations at this stage.

Pensions Regulator

Jackie Doyle-Price: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what plans he has to review the powers and responsibilities of the pensions regulator; and if he will make a statement. [121096]

Steve Webb: Government continually monitors developments in pensions provision and the role the Regulator plays in delivering policy. As a case in point the Public Service Pensions Bill which was introduced on 13 September 2012 sets out a new role for the Pensions Regulator in relation to governance and administration of public service pension schemes. The

8 Oct 2012 : Column 673W

proposed new role will as far as possible mirror the existing approach that the Regulator has for private sector schemes.

In addition to the quarterly performance and budgetary review process the Department undertakes with the Regulator, this Government has introduced a requirement to review all arm’s length bodies at least once every three years. These Triennial Reviews will challenge whether the functions they perform are still necessary and, if so, whether it is still appropriate for them to be delivered in the same way. A Triennial Review of the functions of the Pensions Regulator will take place in due course.

Departmental Contracts

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the name is of each company with which his Department has a contract; what the monetary value of each such contract is; and what is provided to his Department under the terms of the contract. [120773]

Mr Hoban: For data reporting and transparency purposes, the Department for Work and Pensions centrally holds detailed information on all contracts worth £10,000 and over. There are presently 489 such live contracts recorded. Details of the supplier, value, duration and deliverables for each contract will be placed in the Library.

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what his Department's policy is on taking into account when assessing tenders submitted for departmental contracts the (a) apprenticeship schemes, (b) policies on employment of paid interns and (c) policies of payment of at least the living wage of each bidding company. [120790]

Mr Hoban: DWP policy is as follows:

(a) It is mandatory to include an apprenticeship and skills schedule in DWP invitation to tender (ItT) documentation and suppliers are required to complete the schedule as part of the tendering process. However, compliance with the requirements of the schedule is a contract performance condition and, as such, the successful contractor must meet any requirements whilst delivering the contract. Therefore, compliance is not assessed at the tender evaluation stage. However, successful tenderers (and any subcontractors) are required to take all reasonable steps, during the course of their contract, to employ apprentices and to ensure 5% of employees are engaged on a formal apprenticeship programme. Thereafter, contractors are required to report on their compliance as a matter of routine.

(b) DWP ItT documentation does not incorporate any policy requirement relating to the employment of paid interns and is therefore not assessed during the tender evaluation stage.

(c) DWP ItT documentation does not incorporate any policy requirement relating to the payment of a living wage and is therefore not assessed during the tender evaluation stage. However, all contractors and subcontractors are required to comply with UK minimum wage legislation.

8 Oct 2012 : Column 674W

Social Security Benefits

Mr Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what the total cost is of in-work benefits paid to local government employees in (a) England, (b) Scotland, (c) Wales and (d) Northern Ireland; [121061]

(2) how many local government employees are in receipt of in-work benefits in (a) England, (b) Wales, (c) Scotland and (d) Northern Ireland. [121062]

Mr Hoban: For in-work credit, return to work credit and job grant, this information is not available. For tax credits, this information is available only at disproportionate cost.

Social Security Benefits: Foreign Nationals

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to his answer of 19 December 2011, Official Report, column 916W, on social security benefits: foreign nationals, whether nationality information is now being captured for benefit applications; and on what date any such information will be published. [121414]

Mr Hoban: Currently the Department for Work and Pensions benefit systems do not record the nationalities of benefit claimants as a matter of course as nationality is not a qualifying factor.

Going forward, the Government will be exploring ways in which we can—regularly and effectively—data match our records and review the immigration status of claimants to ensure that benefit is being properly paid and to prevent fraud. With the introduction of universal credit, the Government will be looking to develop ways to record nationality and immigration status at source.

An ad hoc report on the nationality of national insurance number applicants was published in January 2012 and is available at the following link

http://statistics.dwp.gov.uk/asd/asd1/adhoc_analysis/2012/nat_nino_regs.pdf

Social Security Benefits: Stafford

Jeremy Lefroy: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people in Stafford constituency were claiming (a) jobseeker's allowance, (b) employment and support allowance, (c) incapacity benefit, (d) lone parents allowance, (e) carer's allowance and (f) other out-of-work benefits in the most recent month in 2012 for which data are available and in the corresponding month in each of the last five years. [121384]

Mr Hoban: Statistics on how many people in Stafford constituency were claiming (a) jobseeker's allowance, (b) employment and support allowance, (c) incapacity benefit, (d) lone parents allowance, (e) carer's allowance and (f) other out of work benefits in the most recent month in 2012 for which data are available and in the corresponding month in each of the last five years is as follows:

8 Oct 2012 : Column 675W

8 Oct 2012 : Column 676W

 Jobseekers AllowanceEmployment and Support AllowanceIncapacity and Severe Disablement AllowanceIncome Support Lone ParentsCarers AllowanceIncome Support others on income related benefits

February 2012

1,550

1,280

1,730

600

690

880

February 2011

1,570

920

2,150

600

660

1,050

February 2010

1,710

680

2,380

640

610

1,130

February 2009

1,700

240

2,720

640

570

1,230

February 2008

890

(1)70

2,910

610

500

1,240

(1) Incapacity Benefit was replaced by Employment Support Allowance (ESA) for new claims from October 2008. Data for ESA therefore is at November in 2008. The information is published on the Department's website: http://research.dwp.gov.uk/asd/index.php?page=tabtool Guidance for users is available at: http://research.dwp.gov.uk/asd/asd1/tabtools/guidance.pdf Notes: 1. Figures are rounded to the nearest 10. 2. The out of work benefits which are included in this analysis are: Jobseekers Allowance Employment and Support Allowance Incapacity Benefit and Severe Disablement Allowance Carers allowance Income Support—Lone Parents Income Support—Others. The figures in the table will include overlaps as claimants can be entitled to more than one of the above benefits. Source: DWP Information, Governance and Security Directorate: Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study

Work Capability Assessment

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people have been waiting for a work capability assessment by home visit under the Exeter Assessment Centre for (a) less than one month, (b) two to three months, (c) three to six months and (d) more than six months by local authority area. [119431]

Mr Hoban: The following numbers of claimants are awaiting a home visit for a work capability assessment, where the designated assessment centre is Exeter: The breakdown of the Exeter assessment centre data includes claimants in both Devon county council and Exeter county council:

(a) Nine claimants have been waiting for a home visit for less than one month;

(b) 19 claimants have been waiting for a home visit for more than one month and up to two months;

(c) 35 claimants have been waiting for a home visit for more than more than two months and up to six months;

(d) 77 claimants have been waiting for a home visit for over six months.

Charlotte Leslie: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the additional cost to the public purse of repeated work capability assessments in cases where the applicant has been medically diagnosed as in terminal decline. [121023]

Mr Hoban: If a customer is known to be terminally ill they are placed directly in the support group with their claim fast-tracked to ensure that they receive the highest rate of benefit as quickly as possible. Such cases are only reviewed after a period of three years has elapsed.

Information relating to the additional cost of repeated work capability assessments in such cases is not currently available.

Jeremy Lefroy: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people in Stafford constituency have been given a work capability assessment since May 2010; and what proportion of those people were found fit for work. [121382]

Mr Hoban: The information requested is not available.

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the number of cases of people who were declared fit to work by ATOS, who had their assessment overturned on appeal in the latest period for which figures are available. [121520]

Mr Hoban: Department for Work and Pensions decision makers determine eligibility for employment and support allowance (ESA), taking into account medical assessment reports from Atos and any other relevant information.

The Department regularly publishes official statistics on ESA and the Work Capability Assessment process, including outcomes of appeals heard on Fit for Work decisions. The latest report was published in July 2012 and can be found on the internet at the following link:

http://research.dwp.gov.uk/asd/workingage/index.php?page=esa_wca

Further the Department has recently published ad-hoc analysis which compares Atos recommendations and post appeal Work Capability Assessment outcomes, which can be found at the following link:

http://statistics.dwp.gov.uk/asd/asd1/adhoc_analysis/2012/ESA_Atos_recommendations_post_appeal_WCA_outcomes.pdf

Education

Schools: Knives

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many people in each region have been (a) prosecuted and (b) convicted of knife-related crimes on school property in the last year. [120244]

8 Oct 2012 : Column 677W

Damian Green: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Ministry of Justice.

The number of persons proceeded against at magistrates courts and found guilty at all courts for having an article with a blade or point on school premises, by police force area, in England and Wales in 2011, can be viewed in the following table.

Other than where specified in a statute, information held centrally does not include all the circumstances of each case. It is not possible to identify from data held centrally those specific offences in which a knife may have been used during the committing of a crime.

Number of persons proceeded against at magistrates courts and found guilty all courts for having an article with a blade or point on school premises(1), by police force area, England and Wales, 2011(2,3)
Police force areaProceeded againstFound guilty(4)

Avon and Somerset

1

1

Cheshire

2

2

Cleveland

1

1

Cumbria

1

Devon and Cornwall

1

1

Durham

2

3

Essex

2

3

Gloucestershire

1

1

Greater Manchester

3

3

Hampshire

6

5

Hertfordshire

1

1

Humberside

2

2

Kent

2

2

Lancashire

1

1

Leicestershire

1

1

Merseyside

1

Metropolitan police

36

29

Norfolk

1

1

North Yorkshire

2

2

Northumbria

3

2

Nottinghamshire

2

2

South Yorkshire

1

1

Staffordshire

1

1

Surrey

1

Sussex

1

1

Thames Valley

2

1

West Mercia

2

3

West Midlands

6

6

West Yorkshire

1

1

Wiltshire

1

1

Gwent

1

1

South Wales

2

3

   

Total England and Wales

90

83

8 Oct 2012 : Column 678W

Note: Only those forces are shown in the table where data have been reported. (1) Includes offences under the Criminal Justice Act 1988, section 139A(1) as added by the Offensive Weapons Act 1996, section 4(1). (2) The figures given in the table relate to persons for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences it is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe. (3) Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts and police forces. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used. (4 )The number of defendants found guilty in a particular year may exceed the number proceeded against as the proceedings in the magistrates court took place in an earlier year and the defendants were found guilty at the Crown court in the following year; or the defendants were found guilty of a different offence to that for which they were originally proceeded against. Source: Justice Statistics Analytical Services—Ministry of Justice

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963

Stephen Phillips: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what guidance his Department has issued to local authorities on the interpretation of section (3)(c) of the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963 in respect of whether there is a requirement for annual immunisation certificates. [121386]

Mr Heath: Guidance for local authorities in respect of the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963 is provided in two publications "Model Standards Conditions and Guidance for Dog Boarding Establishments" and "Model Standards Conditions and Guidance for Cat Boarding Establishments". The guidance says that proof must be provided that the dogs/cats have current vaccinations. There is no specific reference to the frequency of the vaccinations annual or otherwise. The guidance was prepared by cat and dog interest groups, veterinary organisations and local authority groups.

Gun Sports

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the potential effect on the sport of shooting of introducing a ban on using lead shot; and if he will make a statement. [119890]

Richard Benyon: DEFRA and the Food Standards Agency established the independent Lead Ammunition Group (LAG) in 2010 to look at the issues around the toxic effects of lead ammunition. Shooting interests are well represented on the group alongside other key interests.

The LAG is considering the evidence to assess what risks may exist to human health and wildlife from lead ammunition and will report later this year to DEFRA and the Food Standards Agency.

8 Oct 2012 : Column 679W

Any regulatory changes considered necessary as a result of the LAG's findings would be subject to public consultation and would need to be proportionate to the risks identified. The impact of a ban on lead shot, including the impact on the sport of shooting, would be assessed as part of any proposals brought forward.

Pay

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the highest paid position is in (a) his Department and (b) his Department's agencies. [121623]

Richard Benyon: The highest paid position in the core Department is the permanent secretary and, in each of the executive agencies, the chief executive.

Sustainable Development

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps his Department is taking to implement the European Commission's strategy for a resource-efficient Europe. [121576]

Richard Benyon: DEFRA recognises the importance of resource efficiency in addressing the significant pressures we face on energy, resources and the natural environment. The European Commission's flagship resource efficiency initiative sets a broad vision for resource efficiency in Europe, to be taken into consideration across a range of EU portfolios. This Department will continue to engage with the Commission and others to influence the further development of this initiative.

The Resource Efficiency Roadmap, published by the Commission in September 2011, sets out a range of 'suggested' milestones for the Commission and member states to deliver across a broad range of portfolios including: water, air, land and soils, food, buildings, transport, ecosystem services, waste and taxation.

The Roadmap, agreed at Environment Council in December 2011, does not bind member states to specific targets but commits to the development of indicators to measure progress against the milestones.

A consultation on resource efficiency indicators is now open, closing on 22 October, to which we will respond.

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps his Department is taking to promote resource efficiency in the economy. [121577]

Richard Benyon: DEFRA recognises the importance of resource efficiency in addressing the significant pressures we face on energy, resources and the natural environment. Improving resource efficiency also helps business save money, become more competitive and benefit from rapidly growing global markets in green technology.

Research for DEFRA estimates that around £23 billion of savings per year could be made through simple resource efficiency improvements. The potential is greater for longer term actions. Action makes good business

8 Oct 2012 : Column 680W

sense. That is why some leading companies have taken significant resource efficiency measures to realise financial and reputation value through resource efficiency.

However, as demonstrated by recent business surveys, many companies are yet to take action. So DEFRA works to support businesses to realise these benefits, and is the one of the main funders of the Waste and Resources Action programme. Through this body we plan to deliver around £1.9 billion of benefits to business, local authorities and the wider public sector between 2011-15 from a range of programmes, including best practice advice and support, voluntary agreements and loan funds.

We work to ensure the regulatory framework supports action on sustainability, such as by providing a long-term signal through landfill tax and the development of clear consumer standards on Energy Using Products. We are also ensuring that the Government is more energy and water efficient, and generates less waste through our Greening Government Commitments. Mandatory baseline standards for procurement (the Government Buying Standards) also take into account whole-life costs of goods and services including energy and water use.

Timber: EU Law

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he has made an assessment of the implications for UK companies of the criminal enforcement agreement between Gibson Guitar Corp. and the US on 6 August 2012 resolving a criminal investigation into allegations that the company violated the Lacey Act by illegally purchasing and importing ebony wood from Madagascar and rosewood and ebony from India; and when he expects to bring forward secondary legislation to implement the provisions of the EU Illegal Timber (Due Diligence) Regulation. [121607]

Richard Benyon: There has been no assessment of the implications for UK companies following the criminal enforcement agreement entered into by the USA Government and Gibson Guitar Corp. However, we are committed to eliminating illegal timber from the UK market and will therefore put in place the necessary legislation to implement the provisions of the EU illegal timber regulation in the United Kingdom by 3 March 2013 in accordance with the provisions of the regulation. Controls under the convention on international trade in endangered species (CITES) already apply and prohibit the commercial importation into the UK of Brazilian rosewood.

Health

Accident and Emergency Departments: Greater London

Mr Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people waited more than (a) two and (b) four hours in Accident and Emergency at (i) Barking, Havering and Redbridge Hospitals, (ii) Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals NHS Trust, (iii) Barts Health London NHS Foundation Trust, (iv) Croydon Health Services NHS Trust and (v) Ealing Hospital NHS Trust in (A) 2010-11 and (B) 2011-12; and if he will make a statement. [121534]

8 Oct 2012 : Column 681W

Anna Soubry: The total numbers of accident and emergency (A and E) attendances during 2010-11 and 2011-12 for the trusts covering the specified hospitals are shown in the following tables, together with figures

8 Oct 2012 : Column 682W

showing duration to departure. Data for 2011-12 are provisional and therefore subject to change until the final annual publication of data.

2010-11
Trust nameTotal A&E attendances0-120 minutes to departure121-240 minutes to departureOver 240 minutesUnknown

Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust

179,386

42,269

120,025

17,090

2

Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals NHS Trust

151,551

37,475

110,071

4,005

Barts and The London NHS Trust

137,463

67,198

57,314

12,951

Croydon Health Services NHS Trust

131,050

68,277

60,194

2,433

146

Ealing Hospital NHS Trust

91,231

33,707

43,555

13,969

2011-12 (provisional data)
Trust nameTotal A&E attendances0-120 minutes to departure121-240 minutes to departureOver 240 minutesUnknown.

Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust

205,128

48,645

132,242

24,241

Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals NHS Trust

152,989

37,390

109,287

6,312

Barts and The London NHS Trust

137,157

71,432

59,249

6,476

Croydon Health Services NHS Trust

132,682

62,566

65,552

4,396

168

Ealing Hospital NHS Trust

54,750

13,516

38,719

2,515

Notes: 1. Activity at A&E departments is recorded as the number of attendances. It should be noted that an individual person may attend the same or different A&E departments within any given year and therefore this does not represent the number of patients. 2. The total amount of time spent in the A&E department is calculated as the difference in time from arrival at A&E to the time when the patient is discharged from A&E care. This includes being admitted to hospital, died in the department, discharged with no follow up or discharged—referred to another specialist department. Source: Hospital Episode Statistics collated by the NHS Information Centre.

Blood Diseases

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many and what proportion of deaths in intensive care were caused by sepsis in each of the last five years; [121222]

(2) what estimate he has made of the number of deaths caused by sepsis which could be avoided by earlier recognition and treatment in each of the last five years. [121224]

Dr Poulter: Data on the number of deaths caused by sepsis are not available. However, data on the total number of deaths from septicaemia for England and Wales for the period 2007-11 are available from the Office for National Statistics and are shown in the following table.

Information on the number of deaths caused by sepsis in intensive cares units or deaths that could have been avoided by earlier recognition or treatment is not available.

Deaths from septicaemia in England and Wales, 2007-11
 Total

2007

2,373

2008

2,217

2009

2,280

2010

2,183

2011

2,158

Source: Office for National Statistics

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what procedures are in place in general hospital wards to recognise developing sepsis. [121223]

Dr Poulter: Frontline health care professionals are routinely trained to recognise the early signs of severe sepsis and how to treat it. The Department supports the existing international guidance on the management of sepsis and used this to inform ‘Start Smart Then Focus’ guidance published in November 2011, which emphasises the importance of prompt treatment with antibiotics where there is clinical evidence of an infection. A copy has already been placed in the Library.

8 Oct 2012 : Column 683W

Cosmetics

Ms Abbott: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people of each ethnicity, age and gender have received skin lightening treatment in the last five years. [121133]

Dr Poulter: The information requested is not collected centrally.

Electronic Cigarettes

Ms Abbott: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to regulate e-cigarettes; and what assessment he has made of the risks to public health posed by e-cigarettes. [121132]

Norman Lamb: There are a number of products on the market which claim to contain nicotine, such as electronic cigarettes, which are widely available but are not licensed medicines. Currently, any nicotine-containing product (NCP) which claims or implies that it can treat nicotine addiction is considered to be a medicinal product. This approach has allowed NCPs which do not make such claims to be used and sold without the safeguards built into the regulation of medicinal products.

Electronic cigarettes are not currently regulated as medicines, which are required to meet appropriate standards of safety, quality and efficacy. In March 2011, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) published the outcome of a public consultation on whether to bring all nicotine containing products within the medicines licensing regime. The response to consultation highlighted the need for further information to inform a decision. The MHRA is co-ordinating further scientific and market research with a view to making a final decision on the application of medicines regulation in spring 2013.

At present, electronic cigarettes are covered by the provisions of the General Product Safety Directive and associated regulations. Some electronic cigarettes have been tested by local authority trading standards departments and have been found to pose a potential danger to consumers. The available data suggest that there can be great variability in the content of electronic cigarettes, both in the amount of nicotine present and also in relation to other potentially toxic substances, with potentially significant implications for public health, given the increasing use of these products.