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Identity Security

Lord Hanningfield asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): This information is not held centrally and can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.



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Immigration: Haslar

The Earl of Sandwich asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): The available information shows that on 31 January 2008 seven detainees had been detained for over a year at Haslar. They had not previously been held in any other immigration removal centre. None of the detainees was detained only on the ground that their nationality had not been determined.

Kenya: Mwai Kibaki

Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): It is not Home Office policy to comment on individual cases.

Marine Environment: Conservation Areas

Lord Dykes asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Rooker): Yes. Natural England has recently completed a survey of seven areas of search for additional special areas of conservation in English territorial waters. The results are being analysed with a view to proposing possible sites later this year. The Joint Nature Conservation Committee is currently consulting on the first tranche of seven special areas of conservation in the offshore area and is continuing to survey additional areas of search.

Neighbourhood Renewal Fund

Lord Harris of Haringey asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Andrews): The local authority was the accountable body for the Neighbourhood Renewal Fund (NRF) and was required to have in place effective systems to ensure that NRF was spent correctly and appropriately. Government offices (GOs) were charged with reviewing the effectiveness of the local strategic partnership (LSP) and helping the LSP to identify learning needs and to access appropriate support. The review was expected to take into account the level of LSP spend against its allocation and whether the NRF spend had been targeted at activities agreed by the LSP and had had an impact on achieving outcomes in accordance with the local neighbourhood renewal strategy, including national floor targets.

Once the review was completed GOs prepared a report for the Neighbourhood Renewal Unit (NRU), which included a rating of each LSP based on a traffic-light system. In cases where the LSP performance was assessed as “red” or “amber/red”, NRU worked with the GO and LSP to identify and implement a support package aimed at improving delivery within the local area.

GOs were not charged with checking outputs but rather were responsible for assessing an area's progress against PSA and other deprivation-related targets.

Lord Harris of Haringey asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Andrews: No assessment has been made by central government, but I am aware that the London Borough of Waltham Forest's internal auditors are carrying out an investigation into the placing of the contract.

Polygamy

Lord Lester of Herne Hill asked Her Majesty's Government:



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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): The Immigration Rules prevent a man from bringing in a second or subsequent wife with him to the UK if another woman has already been admitted to the UK as his wife and that marriage has not been dissolved. All those who seek leave to enter the United Kingdom for the purpose of settling as a spouse of a person resident in the UK or a British citizen must have a visa in this category for entry. If the person does not hold this visa, they will be refused leave to enter.

Although the current Immigration Rules relating to spouses prevent two wives from seeking entry to the UK in this capacity, there are ways in which all parties to a polygamous marriage may be legally present here. For example, a second wife may come to the UK legally through an alternative migration route other than in her capacity as a spouse. In addition, the present prohibition for second wives in the Immigration Rules did not exist before 1988.

Ports

Lord Fearn asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Bassam of Brighton: The information requested is published in the following table:

Cruise and ferry passengers departing from English ports by purpose of visit (million passengers)
20052006

Total passengers (all reasons)

11.2

11.3

of which:

UK residents stating reason for journey as holiday or visiting friends or relatives

5.7

5.8

Foreign residents returning from holiday or visiting friends or relatives in the UK

2.6

2.5

Sources: DfT sea passenger surveys (for total passenger numbers) and ONS international passenger survey (for estimated breakdown by reasons for journey).

Lord Fearn asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Bassam of Brighton: Information from the Department for Transport’s sea passenger surveys shows that in any given month in 2006 there were between 26 and 30 vessels operating on regular services between UK and French ports.

Transport: Overseas Lorries

Lord Roberts of Llandudno asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Bassam of Brighton: The relevant statistics relating to the Department for Transport’s Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) are:

(a) overloading prohibitions = 463;(b) mechanical prohibitions = 285; and (c) drivers’ hours prohibitions = 899

VOSA does not record the nationality of drivers. There were very few prosecutions for these specific offences because it is not possible—either for VOSA or the police—to require non-UK residents to return to the UK to attend court on such matters. The introduction of graduated fixed penalties and deposits will, however, ensure that they do pay the relevant penalty.

We do not have any statistics relating to enforcement action taken by the police. However, the police do have the power of arrest and use it to deal with serious offences.

North Wales Police confirm that in the period 2 January to 18 December 2007 they detected 156 foreign-registered lorries being driven on the A55 in north Wales in contravention of drivers’ hours regulations. Records showing individual penalties are not available, but all these vehicles received prohibitions, thereby removing them from being a danger. In addition, three foreign drivers received prison sentences for dangerous driving related to gross breaches of the drivers’ hours regulations.

Travel Bans

Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay asked Her Majesty's Government:



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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): The names and nationalities of those foreign nationals who are subject to a United Nations or European Union travel ban are available via the following websites:

www.ec.europa.eu/external_relations/cfsp/sanctions/measures.htm

www.un.org/sc/committees/index.shtml

All individuals who are subject to a UN or EU travel ban are normally barred from entering the United Kingdom.

Separately, since July 2005, Home Secretaries have excluded a total of 221 individuals from the United Kingdom. We have a legal responsibility to handle personal information fairly and would not normally disclose the names of those individuals excluded from the United Kingdom unless it was necessary to do so for a legitimate purpose.

Visas

The Earl of Sandwich asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): Under the current Immigration Rules, migrant domestic workers are granted leave to enter or remain for up to 12 months at a time and may change their employer while in the UK. With the launch of the points-based system, we will be consulting separately on the future of the overseas domestic worker route, following the completion of research and analysis.


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