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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Andrews): Under Section 250(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 and Section 42 of the Housing and Planning Act 1986, the Secretary of State can recover the costs of an inquiry. It is long-standing practice not to recover them fully, in return for local authorities providing inquiry accommodation free of charge and employing a programme officer where that is necessary. No reason is seen to depart from this practice in this case.
The Minister of State, Department of Health (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): Sports and exercise medicine is primarily a clinical specialty aimed at providing high-quality medical care to people who have injury due to exercise. The specialty will also contribute to fighting obesity by promoting exercise. However, this specialty is only one part of the medical support required to address obesity. In addition to this specialty, general practitioners, consultants and a range of clinical specialties will encourage physical activity.
As part of the workforce contribution to Delivering the NHS Improvement Plan, we are moving away from centrally prescribed national targets. It is the responsibility of primary care trusts and strategic health authorities to analyse their local situation and develop plans, in liaison with their local National Health Service trusts and primary care providers, to deliver high-quality NHS services. Local development plans will need to include action to recruit and develop the appropriate staff required to deliver services.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Education and Skills (Lord Adonis): From 2002, the Government established the Sector Skills Development Agency and a network of 25 sector skills councils (SSCs) to address sectoral-specific skills issues. SkillsActive, the SSC for the active leisure and learning sector, is licensed by the Government to lead the productivity drive across the sport and fitness, outdoors, playwork and caravan industries. Following consultation and research with employers, training providers and other partners, the recently published sector skills agreement for the sector has set out the priorities for addressing skills shortages and developing the skills of the workforce. SkillsActive is involved in a variety of initiatives to address skills shortages and to develop the skills of the workforce. These include: preparing a submission for a national skills academy; developing a sport and leisure diploma; developing an advanced apprenticeship in sporting excellence and a young apprenticeship for the sport and active leisure sector; and working with the sector and employers to develop national occupational standards.
The Minister of State, Home Office (Baroness Scotland of Asthal): We agree that using appropriate language and communications can help to undermine terrorist propaganda and unite communities against a common threat. Phraseology is carefully considered in the Governments communications around counterterrorism.
Whether they have studied (a) the report on sexual exploitation and abuse by United Nations personnel serving in peacekeeping forces by Prince Zeid Al-Hussein of March 2005, and (b) Barracks and Brothels by Sarah Mendelson of February 2005, concerning peacekeepers and human trafficking in the Balkans; and what steps the Government, NATO and the European Union are taking to prevent and eliminate the behaviour to which these studies draw attention. [HL1888]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Triesman): The UK, with EU partners and other like-minded countries, worked closely with the UN General Assemblys Special Committee on Peacekeeping to ensure that recommendations in Prince Zeids report were adopted as a matter of urgency in 2005. Relevant provisions for prevention, monitoring and investigation of misconduct cases are included in the establishment of new mission mandates and the renewal of existing mission mandates. It is the responsibility of the UN Secretary-General and member states to take necessary steps to prevent sexual exploitation and abuse and to ensure that the UN standards of conduct are adhered to. There are signs that the major troop-contributing countries are now taking this issue seriously and withdrawing contingents accused of misconduct. The UK and EU member states continue to work together on this issue in the UN Special Committee on Peacekeeping to ensure that work based on the reports recommendations continues and is completed successfully. The committee met in special session last month to continue to ensure that progress is made on this issue.
The UK provides support to the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations both to develop policy and to fund training programmes to prevent sexual abuse and exploitation, and regularly raises the issue
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What is their estimate for the current year and next year of the number of degree courses in science, technology, engineering and mathematics offered at United Kingdom universities and the number of students studying these courses. [HL1843]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Education and Skills (Lord Adonis): The department does not hold information on courses offered by higher education institutions. The latest available information on student enrolments is given in the table.
|Undergraduate enrolments at UK higher education institutions1|
|Source: Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) student record data.|
|Figures have been rounded to the nearest five; components may not sum to totals.|
|1 Excludes the Open University|
What steps they are taking to ensure that war pensioners receive priority treatment from National Health Service trusts and local health authorities for conditions for which they receive a pension or have received a gratuity; and what mechanism is in place to resolve any breakdown in arrangements for priority treatment. [HL1758]
The Minister of State, Department of Health (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): Standing National Health Service guidance on the right of war pensioners to generally receive priority treatment in NHS hospitals in respect of the condition or conditions for which they receive a pension or received a gratuity is published by the department in a circular in the
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The Minister of State, Home Office (Baroness Scotland of Asthal): Young people spend an average of 0.87 hours in outdoor exercise per day at Wetherby. In addition, they are afforded a minimum of three hours per week physical education and additional enrichment activities such as football, basketball and the Duke of Edinburgh award. There are no systems in place to record how much of this activity takes place in the open air.
Baroness Scotland of Asthal: Young people at Castington are offered one hour of outdoor exercise per day, Monday to Friday, and two hours per day at the weekend, weather permitting. This does not include scheduled physical education sessions, which vary from week to week.
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