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6 Apr 2005 : Column WA107

Written Answers

Wednesday, 6 April 2005.

Waterways Ireland

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Lord President of the Council (Baroness Amos): Further to my Answer on 24 February 2005 (Official Report, col. WA 218), the criteria were set by Waterways Ireland alone in line with its general requirements for posts at that level.

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Amos: The Waterways Ireland staffing report (WI 1(02)6) to the North/South Ministerial Council meeting of 26 June 2002 cites the Director of Marketing and Communications as one of four directors who have taken up their posts. Within the report he was included in the category of designated and transferred staff and so was not included in the seven seconded staff also listed in the said report.

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Amos: I have nothing further to add to the Answer given on 18 November 2003 (WA 271) when this matter was previously addressed.
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Police Service of Northern Ireland: Maternity Leave

Lord Rogan asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Amos: The pay and conditions of service of police officers are negotiated on a UK-wide basis by the Police Negotiating Board (PNB). The Police Federation of Northern Ireland is represented on the PNB and any changes that it may propose to paid maternity leave would be taken forward through the PNB negotiating process.

Northern Ireland: Public Sector Pension Schemes

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Amos: The five largest public sector pension schemes in Northern Ireland are:

The information requested in respect of each scheme for the 2003–04 financial year as follows (£000's).


(a) total amount of employees' contributions12,33261,85643,20533,78528,715
(b) total amount of employers' contributions92,30574,74056,77430,40552,822
(c) the schemes' total income from contributions and net transfers102,825139,892105,49673,73287,146
(d) the schemes' total expenditure on paying members' pensions and benefits130,187139,752186,64279,534101,165
(e) the difference between income (c) and expenditure (d)27,36214081,1465,80214,019

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Northern Ireland: Teachers

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Amos: In response to previous Questions, I stated that the Department of Education in Northern Ireland does not hold statistical information on the religious breakdown of teachers employed in schools. Furthermore, I stated that the various employing authorities that are responsible for employing teachers hold this information.

I have now been advised that this latter piece of information was factually incorrect for which I apologise. The department does not hold any statistical information regarding the religious breakdown of teachers, nor is it aware of any other bodies which do.

I am informed that the Equality Commission obtained the information it required for its report, The Exception of Teachers from the Fair Employment & Treatment (NI) Order 1998 by selecting a 10 per cent sample of schools, in each management category and educational level, within each of the five education and library boards. Further information of how the commission conducted the investigation can be obtained from its website

No information is held regarding the cost of the commission's sampling exercise.

Northern Ireland: Stormont Estate Car Parking Spaces

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Amos: A total of 116 new car park spaces have been made available on the Stormont estate since 1998. Of these, 12 were created on a derelict site at the Massey Avenue entrance, to accommodate cars belonging to the ministerial carpool. A further 45 spaces were created at Block B Castle Buildings for departments' use, on a redundant builder's compound site. The creation of a new play park in the estate, for use by the general public, required the development of
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59 car park spaces. Any further developments on the estate, including the provision of car parking, will be dependent on the implementation of the workplace 2010 accommodation review.

Northern Ireland: 11-plus Examination

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Amos: Requests for a copy of the consultation document and response booklet can be made to the department by telephone, in writing, by fax and by e-mail. The document can also be viewed and downloaded from the Department of Education website, and responses to the consultation can be made on-line.

A leaflet has been issued to parents of school-age children through schools, providing details of the consultation and how they can respond. Advertisements giving similar details were also placed in the three main newspapers.

The department is encouraging everyone to respond to this important issue and all responses will be considered before decisions are taken. Over 17,000 copies of the consultation document and response booklet have been issued to date.

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