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MV "Prestige"

Lord Hoyle asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean: I refer my noble friend to the Answer I gave the noble Lord, Lord Kilclooney, on 27 November (WA 45).

Venice Commission: UK Membership

Lord Brooke of Alverthorpe asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean : On 7 January HMG announced the appointment of Professor Anthony Bradley as the alternate UK member of the European Commission for Democracy Through Law (the Venice Commission). The Venice Commission is a Council of Europe body which is made up of constitutional experts who provide member states with advice on constitutions and democratic institutions furthering human rights and the rule of law.

Reproductive Healthcare

Baroness Masham of Ilton asked Her Majesty's Government:

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    How much the Department of Health gave in each of the past five years to:


    (a) Marie Stopes International;


    (b) International Planned Parenthood Federation;


    (c) British Pregnancy Advisory Service;


    (d) Pregnancy Advisory Service;


    (e) United Nations Population Fund; and


    (f) Family Planning Association (United Kingdom)

    for the purposes of abortion; and[HL533]

    How much the Department of Health gave in each of the past five years to:


    (a) Marie Stopes International;


    (b) International Planned Parenthood Federation;


    (c) British Pregnancy Advisory Service;


    (d) Pregnancy Advisory Service;


    (e) United Nations Population Fund; and


    (f) Family Planning Association (United Kingdom)

    for the purposes of any other reproductive health services other than abortion or family planning[HL535]

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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath) : The Department of Health has not provided any funding to Marie Stopes International, International Planned Parenthood Federation, British Pregnancy Advisory Service, the Pregnancy Advisory Service (which is no longer in existence) or the United Nations Population Fund in any of the past five years. Funding has been given to the organisations shown in the table.

Funding for Brook Advisory Centres includes funding for various projects and core funding under the Section 64 General Scheme (Section 64 of the Health Services and Public Health Act 1968) to support the central office of this organisation for the purpose of reproductive health services and advice for young people aged under 25. Funding for the fpa includes funding for various projects and Section 64 funding to support the central office of the organisation. Funding for the Contraceptive Education Service is for the purposes of providing reproductive health advice and information to the public and health professionals. Funding for Education for Choice was to support specific projects for the purposes of education on pregnancy choices and funding for Fertility UK was Section 64 funding to support the central office of this organisation for the purposes of family planning.

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1998–991999–20002000–012001–022002–03Total
Brook Advisory Centres£158,953£126,460£121,000£120,000£120,000£646,413
fpa (formerly the Family Planning Association)£189,400£315,500£212,000£209,000£80,000£1,005,900
fpa (Contraceptive Education Service)£900,000£900,000£900,000£900,000£975,000£4,575,000
Education for choice£31,000£52,000£83,000
Fertility UK£25,000£35,000£30,000£30,000£120,000
£1,248,353£1,341,960£1,264,000£1,311,000£1,175,000£6,340,313

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Embryo Research

Lord Alton of Liverpool asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How they intend to reflect the special status of the human embryo when regulating embryo research.[HL793]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 and the Human Fertilisation and Embryology (Research Purposes) Regulations 2001 place conditions on the circumstances in which human embryos can be used in research. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority may grant licences for research involving embryos only if it assesses that the proposed use of embryos is necessary for the purposes of the research and that the research is necessary or desirable for the purposes of promoting advances in the treatment of infertility; increasing knowledge about the causes of congenital disease; increasing knowledge about the causes of miscarriages; developing more effective techniques of contraception or developing methods

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for detecting the presence of gene or chromosome abnormalities in embryos before implantion; increasing knowlege about the development of embryos; increasing knowledge about serious disease or enabling any such knowledge to be applied in developing treatments for serious disease.

Accidental Injury

Lord Faulkner of Worcester asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What action each government department is taking to implement the findings of the report Preventing Accidental Injury—Priorities for Action from the Accidental Injury Task Force.[HL832]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: The main emphasis of the report is the need for government departments and regional and local agencies to work more closely together to address injury prevention and to do so in the context of wider government programmes. The

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recent report of the cross-cutting review of health inequalities and recent guidance on health and neighbourhood renewal have taken a first step towards achieving this. Accidental injury is also included in a current Social Exclusion Unit project on transport and social exclusion.

Lord Faulkner of Worcester asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What action they are taking in relation to fire safety; work safety; and risk education to implement the findings of the report Preventing Accidental Injury—Priorities for Action from the Accidental Injury Task Force.[HL833]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: The report's findings on these issues are being taken forward in discussions on the recently published cross-cutting review of health inequalities, and in preparations for a children's national service framework for the National Health Service.

Sex Selection

Lord Alton of Liverpool asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the results of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority's 1993 consultation on sex selection are in the public domain.[HL892]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority published the results of its 1993 consultation on sex selection in a press release issued on 20 July 1993, with a summary in its third annual report published in July 1994. The authority concluded that sex selection should be permitted for medical reasons only where there is a risk of a child of a particular sex inheriting a serious life-threatening disorder. A copy of the annual report was placed in the Library and a copy of the press release is available from the authority.

Passive Smoking

Baroness Gale asked Her Majesty's Government:

    In view of the fact that passive smoking increases the risk of asthma in children, when they plan to implement a ban on smoking in public places.[HL916]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: This year the Department of Health is funding local tobacco control alliances across England to carry out projects in close co-operation with local employers to tackle passive smoking and to increase the number of smoke-free environments. These projects vary in nature from the production of smoke-free guides to pubs and restaurants to the provision of advice and support to managers wishing to introduce policies. We hope that many will be suitable for national application.

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We will also be increasing the visibility of health messages highlighting to smokers the risks environmental tobacco smoke presents. This is through regulations to transpose into United Kingdom law the European Union Directive on the Manufacture, Presentation and Sale of Tobacco Products. These regulations require tobacco products to carry larger and starker health warnings on both the front and back of the packet. The dangers of passive smoking are highlighted in two of the new warnings which include "Smoking seriously harms you and others around you" and "Protect children: don't make them breathe your smoke".


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