29 Oct 2013 : Column WA223

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Written Answers

Tuesday 29 October 2013

Alcohol

Questions

Asked by Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town

To ask Her Majesty’s Government when they will publish an evaluation of the impact of the Public Health Responsibility Deal Alcohol Network. [HL2775]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe) (Con): A research team at the London School for Hygiene and Tropical Medicine is undertaking an independent evaluation of the Responsibility Deal. The evaluation will not examine the alcohol network specifically, but will comment on the role of pledges under the Responsibility Deal more generally. It will run over three years. The evaluation includes:

- a process evaluation to look at the Responsibility Deal as a whole;- analysis of likely impact of selected pledges;- a study looking at compliance with reporting and transparency requirements of Responsibility Deal pledges;- interviews with stakeholders, including non-participating organisations; and- some in-depth partner case studies.

Asked by Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what was the total amount spent on alcohol during 2012–13 by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.[HL2806]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord De Mauley) (Con): This question could only be answered at disproportionate cost as the financial system does not record amounts spent on alcohol separately from other costs charged as hospitality.

Core Defra has a number of policies in place which make it clear to staff that purchases of alcohol should not normally be made.

Arms Export

Questions

Asked by Lord Campbell-Savours

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Viscount Younger of Leckie on 3 June (WA 100), whether that answer covered any action taken by the Royal Engineers export team to promote the export of defence equipment. [HL2633]

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To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether the Royal Engineers export support team was involved in the sale of bomb detection equipment by companies linked to Gary Bolton or James McCormick. [HL2634]

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is the relationship between the Royal Engineers export support team and the Ministry of Defence.[HL2635]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Viscount Younger of Leckie) (Con): Pursuant to my answer of 3 June (Official Record WA 100), yes, the answer covered action taken by the Royal Engineers export team to promote the export of defence equipment.

We have found no information to indicate that the Royal Engineers Export Support Team (RE EST) was involved in any sale of bomb detection equipment by companies linked to James McCormick. For legal reasons, at present I am unable to comment further on matters relating to Gary Bolton. An application for leave for him to appeal against conviction and sentence has been lodged and is pending.

The RE EST was part of the Defence Export Services Organisation (DESO) within the Ministry of Defence. The unit closed in 2005. The Export Support Team is now part of the UKTI Defence and Security Organisation, although it is staffed by serving members of the British Army.

Banking

Question

Asked by Lord Myners

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether any action has been taken to protect the United Kingdom banking system from a possible default by the United States Treasury; and whether UK regulators have given any guidance on the consequences of a default for risk concentration in the repurchase market and short-term secured funding markets. [HL2547]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): The Government and financial sector authorities undertake contingency plans against a range of events. As with previous Governments, it is not the Government’s practice to comment on the detail of these plans.

The question of guidance is a matter for the regulators, which operate independently of Government. The Treasury has therefore sent this question to the Prudential Regulation Authority, who will respond to the Noble Lord in writing. A copy of the letter will be placed in the library of both Houses.

Banks: Foreign Banks

Questions

Asked by Lord Myners

To ask Her Majesty’s Government by which criteria they and regulators determine whether an international bank can operate in the United Kingdom through a branch or is required to establish a subsidiary;

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA225

and whether, in making such a determination, an assessment is made of regulatory standards in the parent bank’s home territory and qualifying tests for deposit protection.[HL2649]

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they secured the agreement of Prudential Regulatory Authority prior to offering Chinese banks the opportunity to operate in the United Kingdom as branches; and whether they will place any relevant correspondence Library of the House.[HL2689]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): The decision on whether foreign banks operate in the United Kingdom as branches or subsidiaries is singularly a matter for the Prudential Regulation Authority. The rules for the authorisation of non-European Economic Area banks are set by the Prudential Regulatory Authority, as the independent regulator, and can be found in section 1.1 .10 of its Prudential Sourcebook for Banks, Building Societies and Investment firms.

The decision to consider applications from Chinese banks to establish wholesale branches in the United Kingdom was taken by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) alone. The PRA is an independent regulator and the Government has no power to intervene in its regulatory policies or practices.

Barnett Formula

Question

Asked by Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to review the Barnett Formula.[HL2703]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): As set out in the Coalition Programme for Government, this Government's priority must be to reduce the deficit and therefore any change to the Barnett Formula must await the stabilisation of the public finances.

Benefits

Questions

Asked by Lord Laird

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, in the last three years, what percentage and numbers of adult overseas nationals entering the United Kingdom claimed a Department for Work and Pensions key out-of-work benefit within six and 12 months of national insurance number registration.[HL2861]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud) (Con): The Department has released estimates of the number of adult overseas nationals entering the United Kingdom and claiming a Department for Work and Pensions key out of work benefit within six months of national insurance registration: registrations to March 2013, and this can be found at:

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA226

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/nino-allocations-to-adult-overseas-nationals-entering-the-uk-registrations-to-march-2013

This publication also includes estimates of the number of DWP working age benefit claimants, as at February 2013, within Great Britain, who at the time they registered for a National Insurance number, were non-UK nationals.

Information on the number of adult overseas nationals entering the United Kingdom and claiming a Department for Work and Pensions key out of work benefit within twelve months of National Insurance registration is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Asked by Lord Laird

To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many non-United Kingdom European Union nationals are claiming (1) jobseeker's allowance, (2) income support, (3) employment support allowance, (4) disability living allowance, (5) child benefit and child tax credit, (6) retirement pension, and (7) housing benefit, in the United Kingdom; and what percentage of the total claiming in each case such nationals represent.[HL2863]

To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many non-United Kingdom non-European Union nationals are claiming (1) jobseeker's allowance, (2) income support, (3) employment support allowance, (4) disability living allowance, (5) child benefit and child tax credit, (6) retirement pension, and (7) housing benefit, in the United Kingdom; and what percentage of the total claiming in each case such nationals represent.[HL2864]

Lord Freud: The information requested is not available.

However analysts in my Department have released estimates, for Great Britain and each Region in Great Britain, on working age benefit recipients which can be found in the publication for NINo allocations to adult overseas nationals entering the UK: registrations to March 2013 here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/nino-allocations-to-adult-overseas-nationals-entering-the-uk-registrations-to-march-2013

Information relating to Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit is the responsibility of HMRC.

Information for Northern Ireland is the responsibility of the Department for Social Development. Northern Ireland statistics can be found at:

http://www.dsdni.gov.uk/index/stats_and_research/benefit_publications.htm

Burma

Questions

Asked by Baroness Nye

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they are aware of any restrictions being placed on British-funded international aid agencies and United Nations aid agencies and their workers operating in Arakan State, Burma.[HL2660]

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Baroness Northover (LD): UK humanitarian aid provided through the UN and international non-governmental organisations is reaching its targeted populations in Rakhine (Arakan) State, Burma.  Some other agencies have reported sporadic restrictions on access.  In response, the UK consistently calls for open and independent access for humanitarian agencies to reach those in need, and we provide support to the UN to improve communications with the affected communities to help improve acceptance of international assistance to all those in need. 

Asked by Baroness Kinnock of Holyhead

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they consider that Burma’s current rulers, and military leaders, will agree to removing the military’s quota of Members in the Burmese Parliament.[HL2712]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): We continue to encourage Burma’s government, its military leaders and members of its parliament to listen to the demands of the Burmese people and ensure that international democratic standards are adhered to.

Our objective, as the former Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir David Richards, explained to his Burmese counterpart during his visit to Burma in June, is to support the reform process by helping to facilitate the democratisation of the Burmese military.

We believe it is important for the integrity of Burma’s democracy that the Burmese people are free to choose their political leaders and parliamentary representatives.

Care Bill

Question

Asked by Lord Lipsey

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the compatibility of Clause 67(4) of the Care Bill (as at Report stage in the House of Lords) with the European Convention on Human Rights.[HL2708]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe) (Con): The noble Lord has advised that he is referring to clause 67(4). The Care Bill has been analysed for its compatibility with the European Convention on Human Rights and I provided a signed statement to this effect when the Bill was introduced to the House on 9 May. This statement is recorded at paragraph 655 of the Bill’s explanatory notes.

There is nothing improper in a power allowing a local authority to recover public funds which have been paid out due to a mistake. In exercising their powers local authorities are bound by the general public law principle of reasonableness, and must of course also act in accordance with the Convention rights as required by section 6 of the Human Rights Act 1998.

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Statutory guidance will set out the steps that a local authority is expected to take to recover charges that have not been levied as a result of inaccurate or incomplete information, including through agreement of a repayment plan. Use of formal debt recovery powers to pursue claims through the courts should only be used as a last resort.

Climate Change

Question

Asked by Lord Donoughue

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the conclusions of Professor Richard Tol that climate change global warming in the past century improved human welfare and benefited global economic output; and whether they intend to reassess their energy and climate policies in the light of that research.[HL2797]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Baroness Verma) (Con): The Government has made no formal assessment of Professor Richard Tol’s conclusions about effects of climate change global warming in the past century on human welfare and global economic output.

It should be noted that recent press coverage of this work as an economic consensus and applying it to this century risks being misleading. Only 2 of the 14 papers cited in Tol’s 2009 paper suggested net economic benefits from warming. Professor Tol’s modelling analysis does suggest net benefits from lower levels of warming but others, such as Professor Nordhaus’ and Dr Chris Hope’s respective models, suggest net economic costs even for moderate levels of warming. These modelling frameworks inherently require vast simplifications of the climate system and associated impacts. They only capture a subset of potential impacts due to the uncertainties and challenges in estimating and valuing climate impacts so care needs to be taken before applying them too literally.

Global warming over the past century may well have resulted in some net economic benefits so far for some sectors and regions, primarily in Northern latitudes. However, the net global impact so far has not been the subject of much research as further warming is inevitable due to past emissions of greenhouse gases. Even if emissions are cut drastically, global temperatures are still likely to rise by an average 1.6°C above 19th century levels, by the end of this century.

The more important policy question that most academic work seeks to address is not the impact of the 0.8°C warming experienced since the 19th century but rather the merits of driving national and global action to limit the future increases in global temperatures beyond the level we are already committed to. Without significant reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions, the world is likely to be on course for average temperature rises in excess of 2°C above 19th century levels and possibly as much as 5°C for the highest emissions scenarios, by the end of this century. Whilst there may be variation in the projected severity of the resulting

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impacts, all the models are clear that such higher levels of warming will lead to net economic costs and hence there are economic benefits from emissions reductions.

Professor Tol’s conclusions on the economic impact of historic warming are not a relevant basis for a reassessment of current energy and climate policies to address future warming.

Commonwealth Games 2014

Question

Asked by Lord Wigley

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what financial contribution, over and above money provided by the Barnett formula, they will be making towards the costs of hosting the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014.[HL2678]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): The 2014 Commonwealth Games are an important sporting and cultural event, the delivery of which Her Majesty’s Government fully supports. While the Scottish Government is sponsoring the Games they will place additional burdens on UK Government departments engaged in the Games. In particular there will be financial costs to the area of security, borders, tax and international relations.

Debt

Question

Asked by Lord Hylton

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether persons suffering hardship because of debts have the right to approach a court to secure appropriate repayment conditions; and, if not, whether they will legislate to make it possible.[HL2628]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Viscount Younger of Leckie) (Con): There are a number of options available to an individual suffering hardship because of debts. These include establishing a debt management plan or individual voluntary arrangement with creditors, approaching the court for a County Court Administration Order, applying to the Insolvency Service for a Debt Relief Order and petitioning the court for a bankruptcy order. In the latter case, where a person can pay some part of their debts there are provisions to provide for this over time.

A person should seek free and independent debt advice, which will outline all appropriate debt remedy solutions, to ensure that they have considered all their options. The Money Advice Service, set up by Government, will be able to direct a person to an appropriate adviser and can be contacted on tel: 0300 500 5000 or online at https://www.money adviceservice.org.uk/

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Employment: Pay

Question

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the present annual gross salary level required to produce a net take-home pay of £26,000; and what the figure would be taking into account the costs of travel to work and other costs incurred at work.[HL2648]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): The gross salary needed to produce a given level of take-home pay varies widely depending on an individual’s tax circumstances and other deductions such as pension contributions and student loan repayments. This is before their receipt of state benefits is considered. Similarly, the cost of travelling to work varies widely according to personal circumstances.

Employment: Websites

Question

Asked by Lord Clement-Jones

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is the contractual arrangement between the Department for Work and Pensions and recruitment agencies whose job advertisements are included on the Universal Jobmatch website.[HL2812]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud) (Con): Anyone posting a job on Universal Jobmatch, including recruitment agencies, has to create an account on the Universal Jobmatch website. This requires them to accept the Terms and Conditions for Employers and a contractual relationship is thereby created between the recruitment agency and DWP. At paragraph 9.1.5 of the Terms and Conditions for Employers it states that any job advertised will “have a contract in place with the end employer when the job is being advertised on behalf of another employer (e.g. recruitment agency or job board).”

Energy: Nuclear Power Stations

Questions

Asked by Lord Wigley

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether HM Treasury will underwrite the decommissioning costs of any new nuclear power installations which private companies (including overseas companies) may be given contractual rights to build and operate; and, if so, in what circumstances.[HL2682]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Baroness Verma) (Con): The Government will not underwrite the decommissioning costs of new nuclear power installations. The Government’s policy is that operators of new nuclear power stations must have arrangements in place to

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meet the full costs of decommissioning and their full share of waste management and disposal costs. This policy is being implemented through the Energy Act 2008. This requires operators of new nuclear power stations to have a Funded Decommissioning Programme approved by my rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State in place before construction of a new nuclear power station begins and to comply with this programme thereafter.

Asked by Lord Avebury

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether the Office for Nuclear Regulation has approved the application by Magnox Ltd to extend generation at Wylfa unit 2 until the end of 2015; and what are the factors, if any, preventing any further extension. [HL2765]

Baroness Verma: Currently, Reactor 2 at Wylfa is permanently shut down and is providing partially spent fuel elements for use in Reactor 1 to allow further electricity generation in the absence of new fuel elements to power the single reactor.

In September 2013 the Office for Nuclear Regulation received a periodic safety review from the licensee setting out the case to extend generation at the site to the end of 2015. This is currently being reviewed.

The review considers the effects of plant ageing, operational experiences and modifications made to the plant; and it contains actions recommended by the licensee (Magnox Ltd) to address areas identified for improvements arising from their review.

Asked by Lord Barnett

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is the difference in the estimated cost to the Exchequer between the recent arrangement with China and France for a new nuclear power station and financing the capital by the Exchequer at current interest rates.[HL2869]

Baroness Verma: Under the proposed investment contract, it is for the developer and investors and not the Exchequer, to finance the capital.

Energy: Pre-paid Meters

Question

Asked by Lord Kennedy of Southwark

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the charges paid for energy by consumers who use pre-paid meters.[HL2876]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Baroness Verma) (Con): Since 2010, prepayment meter customers have been offered the same prices by large suppliers as customers paying on standard credit.

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Homosexuality

Question

Asked by Baroness Scotland of Asthal

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Warsi on 12 October (WA 99), whether their interpretation of “other grounds” in the Commonwealth Charter as including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people is accepted by all Commonwealth governments; and how they will ensure Commonwealth members are accountable on those issues.[HL2851]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights remain a deeply controversial issue within the Commonwealth. The UK cannot speak on behalf of other governments. However, the Commonwealth Secretary-General at the UN Human Rights Council in February 2013 said “with regard to sexual orientation and gender identity our position remains that, based on shared Commonwealth principles, we oppose discrimination or stigmatisation on any grounds”.

The Commonwealth Secretariat has been building the capacities of youth, national human rights institutions and parliamentarians to engage constructively on this issue.

The UK supported the strengthened language in the Commonwealth Charter opposing all forms of discrimination on all grounds and consistently pushed for stronger language on human rights, including reference to LGBT rights, but in order to achieve consensus we accepted a formulation setting out our opposition to all forms of discrimination on any grounds.

We continue to press other member states to live up to this commitment.

House of Lords: Publications and Print Costs

Question

Asked by Lord Palmer

To ask the Chairman of Committees how much the House of Lords Annual Report 2012–13 cost to produce and print; and how much it would have cost to print on the quality of paper used for printing the Official Report.[HL2840]

The Chairman of Committees (Lord Sewel): 275 copies of the House of Lords Annual Report 2012-13 were printed, at a total cost of £3,703.35. This figure includes the costs of the design, origination, printing and finishing. There were no other production costs other than staff time and, as the House does not allocate staff costs to specific projects, it is not possible to estimate the cost of staff time associated with producing the Annual Report.

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If the same number of copies of the Annual Report had been printed on the quality of paper used for the Official Report, the cost would have been £3,353.35. However, the lower grade paper is not suited to printing graphs or charts and so the overall quality of the product would have been substantially poorer.

House of Lords: Staff

Question

Asked by Lord Storey

To ask the Chairman of Committees how many people are currently employed on zero-hours contracts in the House of Lords; and whether there are plans to introduce zero-hours contracts to departments other than Hansard and Catering and Retail Services.[HL2753]

The Chairman of Committees (Lord Sewel): 75 people are currently employed on zero-hours contracts in the House of Lords Administration, with 43 of those employed in Hansard and 32 in Catering and Retail Services. The Administration has no plans to introduce zero-hours contracts in other offices.

House of Lords: Toilets

Question

Asked by Lord Foulkes of Cumnock

To ask the Chairman of Committees how many toilets are available within the House of Lords precincts of the Palace of Westminster for (1) female, and (2) male, Peers; whether that number conforms to the provision of the Health and Safety Acts; and what will be the impact of the lists of new Peers. [HL2707]

The Chairman of Committees (Lord Sewel): The House of Lords part of the Parliamentary Estate contains 57 urinals, 85 male water closets (WCs), 73 female WCs, and 40 WCs which are not assigned to either gender, some of which provide facilities for the disabled. These figures include all the toilets in the Lords part of the Palace of Westminster, as well as the Lords outbuildings, many of which can be used by House staff, Members’ staff and guests, as well as by Members.

There is more than one recognised method of calculating toilet provision. The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 stipulate the minimum statutory requirements for how many toilets should be made available in a workplace. The British Standards Institution also produces different pieces of guidance on toilet provision, which vary depending on the use of the premises. The House of Lords part of the Parliamentary Estate has a range of uses and could be classified as providing a variety of accommodation, including office accommodation, restaurant and banqueting facilities, a tourist attraction and an event venue. Furthermore, the number and location of people in the Palace and the outbuildings fluctuates throughout the day.

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It is therefore extremely difficult to calculate accurately the toilet provision just for Members in particular areas. On a whole House basis (excluding toilets and people in the House of Commons), the Parliamentary Estates Directorate has calculated that the House of Lords contains enough toilets for Members and staff (including the Members recently introduced into the House) in a variety of scenarios, according to both the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 and the British Standards Institution standards. However, given that the number of Members, staff and visitors in the House fluctuates greatly from day to day, the ratio of toilets per person is variable.

Housing: Prices

Questions

Asked by Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what were the ratios of median house prices to median earnings in (1) 1997, (2) 2007, and (3) 2012, for (a) the United Kingdom, (b) England, (c) Wales, (d) Scotland, and (e) Northern Ireland, and for each local authority area for which those figures are available.[HL2830]

To ask Her Majesty’s Government when they expect 2013 figures for the ratio of median house prices to median earnings to be available for (1) the United Kingdom, (2) England, (3) Wales, (4) Scotland, and (5) Northern Ireland.[HL2831]

Lord Wallace of Saltaire (LD): The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

Letter from Glen Watson, Director General for ONS, to Lord Oakeshott dated October 2013.

As Director General for the Office for National Statistics (ONS), I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary questions To ask Her Majesty’s Government what were the ratios of median house prices to median earnings in (1) 1997, (2) 2007, and (3) 2012, for (a) the United Kingdom, (b) England, (c) Wales, (d) Scotland, and (e) Northern Ireland, and for each local authority area for which those figures are available HL2830, and when they expect 2013 figures for the ratio of median house prices to median earnings to be available for (1) the United Kingdom, (2) England, (3) Wales, (4) Scotland, and (5) Northern Ireland. HL2831

Unfortunately, median house price data are not available from ONS at a local authority level and the earliest period for which estimates at a regional level are available is 2002. Table 1 below provides estimates for 2007 and 2012.

Information for 2013 will be available on Tuesday 18 February 2014, when ONS publishes the latest estimate of median house prices for quarter 4 of 2013.

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Table 1: Ratio of median house prices to median earnings

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1997 – 2012, UK and component countries

United KingdomEnglandWales
YearMedian Earnings1 (£)Median house price2(£)Ratio (house price to earnings)Median Earnings1 (£)Median house price2(£)Ratio (house price to earnings)Median Earnings1 (£)Median house price2(£)Ratio (house price to earnings)

19973

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

2007

20,000

181,000

9.1

20,345

186,000

9.1

17,676

144,000

8.1

2012

21,473

191,000

8.9

21,790

199,000

9.1

19,126

140,000

7.3

1

Median earnings taken from table 7.7a of the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) and relate to the median gross annual earnings for all employee jobs

2

Median house price taken from table 19 of the ONS monthly and quarterly House Price Index reference table and reflects the annual average of the quarterly, non-mix adjusted median house price

3

Median house price data not available in 1997

Source:

Office for National Statistics

ScotlandNorthern Ireland
YearMedian Earnings1 (£)Median house price2(£)Ratio (house price to earnings)Median Earnings1 (£)Median house price2(£)Ratio (house price to earnings)

19973

-

-

-

-

-

-

2007

19,312

134,000

6.9

17,171

207,000

12.1

2012

20,950

154,000

7.4

18,703

115,000

6.1

1

Median earnings taken from table 7.7a of the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) and relate to the median gross annual earnings for all employee jobs

2

Median house price taken from table 19 of the ONS monthly and quarterly House Price Index reference table and reflects the annual average of the quarterly, non-mix adjusted median house price

3

Median house price data not available in 1997

Source:

Office for National Statistics

Human Trafficking

Question

Asked by Lord Condon

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what progress has been made in combating human trafficking during the last three years.[HL2815]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord Taylor of Holbeach) (Con): The Government published its Human Trafficking Strategy in July 2011 and has reported annually on progress to combat this crime. The second report of the Inter-Departmental Ministerial Group on Human Trafficking was published on 18 October 2013 (Cm8731).

Internet: Cyber-bullying

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to combat cyber-bullying; and whether they intend to introduce specific legislation to address the issue.[HL2857]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Nash) (Con): The law makes it very clear that if something is illegal offline, it is also illegal online. Bullying itself, including cyberbullying, is not a specific criminal offence; although some types of harassing and threatening behaviour or communications could be criminal offences. Current Acts that can be used to prosecute cyberbullying-related offences are:

1. The Protection from Harassment Act 19972. The Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 3. The Malicious Communications Act 19984. The Communications Act 2003

The Government does not intend to introduce specific additional legislation to address the issue of cyberbullying. The fast-moving and global nature of the internet means that regulation of sites and legislation to tackle problems such as cyberbullying is likely to be ineffective because new social media websites are constantly being developed.

The Government has taken, however, steps that will help schools combat cyberbullying and is working with internet providers to address the wider issues.

All schools are required to have a behaviour policy which includes measures to prevent and tackle all forms of bullying. They are held to account for their effectiveness through Ofsted. We have given teachers a specific power to search for and, if necessary, delete inappropriate images or files on electronic devices, including mobile phones.

From September 2014 schools will teach pupils in all four key stages about e-safety as part of the new curriculum. This will empower young people to tackle cyberbullying through responsible, respectful and secure use of technology, as well as ensuring that pupils are

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taught age-appropriate ways of reporting any concerns they may have about what they see or encounter online.

In addition the Department for Education is providing £4 million of funding over two years to four anti-bullying organisations. This includes Beat Bullying, the National Children’s Bureau, the Diana Award and Kidscape. These organisations carry out important anti-bullying work in schools that is also likely to address the issue of cyberbullying.

The Government has also pressed for progress through the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS). UKCCIS brings together the most important internet—such as Facebook and Microsoft—as well as Ministers, and works to protect children online, including from the risk of cyberbullying.

Iraq

Question

Asked by Lord Maginnis of Drumglass

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what financial aid or support the United Kingdom has given, directly or indirectly, to the government of Iraq since 2010.[HL2756]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): We currently provide no direct budgetary assistance to the Government of Iraq.

Since 2010, the Government has spent approximately £23 million through the Department for International Development in Iraq. Of this, approximately £6.2 million has taken the form of UK contributions to EU and other multilateral funds, and £3.3 million has been assistance to the estimated 220,000 Syrian refugees in Iraq. The Government also provides bilateral project funding to various local partners including the Government of Iraq, parliament, judiciary and civil society organisations, which has totalled around £11 million since 2010. Details on this work can be found at: www.gov.uk/government/world/iraq.

The UK also supports Iraq through our contributions to the United Nations, including approximately £41.6 million to the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq since 2010, and to the European Union.

Israel and Palestine

Question

Asked by Lord Hylton

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made to the government of Israel about the use of attack-dogs and the firing of rubber-coated bullets at non-violent civilian demonstrators in recent years in the Palestinian Occupied Territories.[HL2701]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): The UK has repeatedly made representations to Israel regarding the manner in which the Israeli Defence

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA238

Force polices non-violent protests, including use of live ammunition. Our officials from the Embassy in Tel Aviv last raised the issue with the Israeli Prime Minister's Office on 17 September.

The Government has also highlighted the issue of appropriate use of force in policing protests in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s annual human rights report. We welcomed the second report of the Turkel Commission, which looked at dealing with complaints relating to use of force and urged Israel to implement the report’s recommendations.

Israel and Palestine: West Bank

Questions

Asked by Baroness Tonge

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the recent report published by Kerem Navot Israeli Settler Agriculture as a Means of Land Takeover in the West Bank.[HL2714]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): We are aware of the report mentioned but have made no assessment of it to date. Our position on Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories remains clear: they are illegal under international law, an obstacle to peace and make a two-state solution, with Jerusalem as a shared capital, harder to achieve.

Asked by Baroness Tonge

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the number of structures demolished in Area C of the West Bank in the first half of 2013 that are scheduled for rebuilding.[HL2715]

Baroness Warsi: We have made no independent assessment. However, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OHCA), 343 structures were demolished by the Israeli authorities in Area C between 1 January and 1 July 2013. No statistics are available as to how many of those structures are scheduled for rebuilding.

Asked by Baroness Tonge

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what research has been conducted into the effects of Israeli industrial pollutants from the Barqan settlement on the health of Palestinians living in Bruqeen village.[HL2716]

Baroness Warsi: The British Government has carried out no independent research into this issue. However, we are aware of a study by Friends of The Earth Middle East which predicted that pollution from the Barqan industrial area will reach groundwater within 15 years.

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA239

Justice: Community Justice Centres

Question

Asked by Baroness Scotland of Asthal

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have for the future of the Community Justice Centre in Liverpool; and what assessment they have made of the impact any such plans will have on the local community.[HL2745]

The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord McNally) (LD): Following a consultation on the future of North Liverpool Community Justice Centre (NLCJC), I made a Written Ministerial Statement in the House on Tuesday 22 October 2013 which announced the Lord Chancellor’s decision that the proposed closure of the NLCJC should proceed and that the majority of its work be transferred to Sefton Magistrates’ Court.

The government’s response to the consultation can be found on the justice website at: https://consult.justice.gov.uk/digital-communications/north-liverpool-community-justice-centre/consult_view

An assessment of the impacts of the closure on the local community was made as part of the consultation process on which the consultation response is based. Further details can be found in the response document and impact assessment.

Marine Conservation Areas

Question

Asked by Lord Avebury

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they intend to support the proposals for Marine Conservation Areas in the Ross Sea and the Weddell Sea to be tabled at the meeting of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources beginning on 23 October; and whether there will be a full report of the views expressed by stakeholders at the meeting.[HL2766]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): We strongly support the Marine Protected Area proposals currently under discussion at the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) meeting in Hobart. We will work towards agreement wherever the final formulation reflects the underpinning science and there is an effective management framework to deliver a practical outcome. The CCAMLR Secretariat produce a report of the proceedings. This will include the views of fishing industry members and non-governmental organisations, and will be available in due course.

National Insurance

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many national insurance numbers were registered to adult overseas nationals entering the United Kingdom

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA240

from (1) the European Union, (2) and the rest of the world, in the last three years; and what were the reasons for any falls or rises in those numbers. [HL2862]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud) (Con): The information requested can be found at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

There is no information available that would provide definitive reasons for any falls or increases in the numbers of National Insurance numbers registered.

I understand that the support staff in the House of Lords library are also able to assist the noble Lord in extracting the information he requires.

Guidance on how to extract the information required can be found at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Stat-Xplore_User_Guide.htm

Olympic and Paralympic Games 2012

Question

Asked by Lord Wigley

To ask Her Majesty’s Government how much has been paid by HM Treasury to (1) the Welsh Government, (2) the Scottish Government, and (3) the Northern Ireland Executive, as Barnett consequential payments arising from the expenditure in East London in association with the 2012 London Olympic Games.[HL2679]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): In December 2011, the Joint Ministerial Committee (JMC) announced an agreement on the 2012 Olympics Consequential Funding where the Scottish Government, the Welsh Government and the Northern Ireland Executive would receive a one-off sum equivalent to the Barnett formula consequentials of relevant changes to Olympics funding since the present UK Government took office in May 2010 until the date of the agreement. These sums amount to £30.2m, of which the Scottish Government will receive £16m, the Welsh Government £8.9m and the Northern Ireland Executive £5.4m.

Palestine

Question

Asked by Baroness Tonge

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, in the light of the Department for International Development's support for "the right to legal representation for the Palestinians" as stated in its Palestinian Programme Operational Plan 2011–15, whether that support has resulted in any Palestinian civilians with life-changing injuries securing compensation through the Israeli legal system.[HL2713]

Baroness Northover (LD): DFID helps to fund the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), who work through local partners to provide legal aid to Palestinians, including to farmers and fishermen in the Access

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA241

Restricted Areas in Gaza. The NRC has taken on some cases where Gazans have been injured by live fire from Israeli forces in the Access Restricted Areas. So far none of these cases has resulted in compensation being paid.

Palestine and Gaza

Question

Asked by Lord Hylton

To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many British citizens have been killed in the Palestinian Occupied Territories, including Gaza, since January 1993; and whether the government of Israel has accepted responsibility in any of those cases, to what effect.[HL2700]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): We are unable to answer the question in the time available as the information requested, covering twenty years, is not held centrally.

Public Bodies

Questions

Asked by Lord Dear

To ask Her Majesty’s Government to which public bodies the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has appointed board members since May 2005; who was appointed in each case; and in which year each board member was appointed. [HL2658]

To ask Her Majesty’s Government to which of its public bodies the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs expects to appoint new board members between 2013 and 2020.[HL2659]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord De Mauley) (Con): There have been Board member appointments to all of Defra’s public bodies since May 2005. The following list covers all public bodies and a link to their websites has been included, where information on board membership and current details can be found.

It would be of disproportionate cost to list all appointees for each body and which year the board member was appointed.

I expect that there will be new board appointments to all of Defra’s public bodies between 2013 and 2020.

Advisory Committee on Pesticides

http://www.pesticides.gov.uk/guidance/industries/pesticides/advisory-groups/acp/acp-committee-information/members-of-the-advisory-committee-on-pesticides-2012

Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment

http://www.defra.gov.uk/acre/about/membership/

Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board

http://www.ahdb.org.uk/about/documents/AHDBboardandsectorboardmembersApril2013.pdf

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA242

Broads Authority

http://www.broads-authority.gov.uk/authority/about-us/membership.html

Conservation Board for the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

http://www.chilternsaonb.org/conservation-board/board-members.html

Conservation Board for the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

http://www.cotswoldsaonb.org.uk/?page=BoardMembers

Consumer Council for Water

http://www.ccwater.org.uk/server.php?show=nav.41

Covent Garden Market Authority

http://www.newcoventgardenmarket.com/board

Dartmoor National Park Authority

http://www.dartmoor-npa.gov.uk/aboutus/au-theauthority/au-members/au-listofmembers-2

Environment Agency

http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/aboutus/organisation/35669.aspx

Exmoor National Park Authority

http://www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk/about-us/members

Forestry Commissioners

http://www.forestry.gov.uk/commissioners

Gangmasters Licensing Authority

http://gla.defra.gov.uk/PageFiles/921/Gangmasters%20Licensing%20Authority%20Board% 20members.pdf

Joint Nature Conservation Committee

http://jncc.defra.gov.uk/page-5349

Lake District National Park Authority

http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/aboutus/members

Marine Management Organisation

http://www.marinemanagement.org.uk/about/board_members.htm

National Forest Company

http://www.nationalforest.org/about_us/organise/

Natural England

http://www.naturalengland.org.uk/about_us/ourpeople/neboard/default.aspx

New Forest National Park Authority

http://www.newforestnpa.gov.uk/info/20012/our_people/79/members

North York Moors National Park Authority

http://www.northyorkmoors.org.uk/living-in/how-the-authority-works/the-members

Northumberland National Park Authority

http://www.northumberlandnationalpark.org.uk/lookingafter/nationalparkorganisation/memberscommittees/members

Peak District National Park Authority

http://www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/about-us/who-we-are/members

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA243

Royal Botanic Gardens Kew

http://www.kew.org/about-kew/who-we-are/board-of-trustees/index.htm

Science Advisory Council

http://www.defra.gov.uk/sac/about-us/members/

Sea Fish Industry Authority

http://www.seafish.org/about-seafish/our-structure/meet-the-team

South Downs National Park Authority

http://www.southdowns.gov.uk/about-us/about-the-authority/members

Veterinary Products Committee

http://www.vmd.defra.gov.uk/vpc/membership/members.aspx

Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat)

http://www.ofwat.gov.uk/aboutofwat/structure/organisation/

Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority

http://www.yorkshiredales.org.uk/national parkauthority/aboutthenationalparkauthority/whoisintheauthority/members

These bodies do not have websites:

Agricultural Dwelling House Advisory Committees

Agricultural Wages Committees for England

Committee on Agricultural Valuation

Food from Britain

Independent Agricultural Appeals Panel

Some Internal Drainage Boards do have their own websites, these can be found by using the search facility on the Association of Drainage Authorities website http://www.ada.org.uk/idb_members_map.html

Questions for Written Answer

Question

Asked by Lord Tebbit

to ask the Leader of the House how many Questions for Written Answer tabled in the House of Lords they have answered in the most recent four weeks for which information is available which related to matters in foreign jurisdictions over which they have no powers.[HL2848]

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (Lord Hill of Oareford) (Con): The Government frequently answers Questions for Written Answer relating to its interest in matters in foreign jurisdictions. The Companion to the Standing Orders says that “Questions should not ask about the internal affairs of another country (save for questions about human rights or other matters covered by international conventions to which the United Kingdom is party)” (paragraph 6.19). The Table Office advises Members on the application of this rule. Any Government department which believes that a Question addresses a matter which falls wholly outside Government responsibility can say so in its reply.

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA244

Rape

Question

Asked by Baroness Scotland of Asthal

To ask Her Majesty’s Government further to the Written Answer by Baroness Warsi on 21 October (WA 119), what consideration is specifically given to corrective rape against homosexual women in the Commonwealth in the framework of violence against women; and whether they have collated statistics pertaining to its proliferation.[HL2852]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): No statistics have been collated and the Commonwealth Secretariat has not collated statistics on corrective rape of homosexual women in the Commonwealth.

Ending all forms of violence against women and girls is a priority for the Government. We are funding programmes in over 20 countries to address it, as well as investing £25 million over five years (2013-18) in a new Research and Innovation Fund on preventing Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG).

In addition, we are working with our international partners, including the Commonwealth, to bring this issue to the attention of the world through, for example, the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my Rt. Hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague)’s Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) and the Department for International Development’s ‘Call to Action’ which aims to mobilise global—within humanitarian agencies, recipient countries and donors—to effect change within the humanitarian system, so that prevention of and response to violence against women and girls is prioritised from the first phase as a life-saving intervention.

Republic of Ireland: Financial Assistance

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

To ask Her Majesty’s Government when they expect the Republic of Ireland to repay funding supplied to it at the start of the financial crisis. [HL2604]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): The UK’s bilateral loan to Ireland of £3.2 billion was disbursed in eight tranches of £403.7m each, which will be repaid 7.5 years from the date of disbursement as set out in the bilateral loan agreement. The final tranche was disbursed on 26 September 2013; therefore the final repayment of principal will take place on 26 March 2021. In accordance with the Loans to Ireland Act 2010, HM Treasury reports to Parliament every six months with information on the loan.

The UK’s bilateral loan was provided as part of an Economic Adjustment Programme for Ireland which included a joint financing package of €85 billion with contributions from the European Financial Stabilisation

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA245

Mechanism (EFSM) (€22.5 billion), an additional €22.5 billion from euro area Member States under the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and bilateral contributions from Sweden (€0.6 billion) and Denmark (€0.4 billion), as well as funding from the IMF (€22.5 billion). Moreover, there was an Irish contribution through the Treasury cash buffer and investments of the National Pension Reserve Funds (€17.5 billion).

The loans have been disbursed in tranches following regular programme reviews. The maximum average maturity for EFSM and EFSF loans is 19.5 years, within this individual disbursements have different maturities. IMF loans have a weighted average of 7.5 years. Denmark and Sweden's bilateral loans have a maturity of 7.5 years.

The IMF, EFSM and EFSF have not yet disbursed the full amount of their loans. The maturity of these loans will be determined on disbursement.

Russia

Question

Asked by Lord Alton of Liverpool

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they have made any representations about the imprisonment in Russia of the journalist Kieron Bryan since his arrest on board the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise on 19 September; and, if so, what response they have received.[HL2692]

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): Mr Kieron Bryan is one of six British nationals who were on board the Greenpeace vessel “Arctic Sunrise” who have been detained by the Russian authorities. The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my Rt. Hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), discussed their detention with Russia’s Foreign Minister on 25 September, and subsequently wrote to him on 6 October. The Foreign Secretary continues to follow the case very closely. Senior Foreign and Commonwealth officials also raised this case with the Russian Ambassador to the UK on 26 September. The British Embassy have followed up with the Russian authorities, most recently on 2 October when the British Ambassador in Moscow raised the detentions with Deputy Foreign Minister Ryabkov. The Russian authorities are fully aware of our concerns, and we will continue to monitor the case closely. We will continue to provide full consular assistance to the six British nationals. Consular staff are also in regular contact with the families of the British nationals detained, including Mr Bryan’s.

Saudi Arabia

Question

Asked by Lord Hylton

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they will make available any relevant material that they hold in respect of the Periodic Review of Saudi Arabia at the United Nations Human Rights Council.[HL2789]

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA246

The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi) (Con): The UK’s statement and recommendations made during Saudi Arabia’s recent Universal Periodic Review (UPR) are available on webtv.un.org. Our advanced questions for Saudi Arabia’s UPR are on the website of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (www.ohchr.org).

Schools: Free Schools

Question

Asked by The Lord Bishop of Derby

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to ensure that there is a rigorous assessment of the leadership, aims and ethos of free schools.[HL2801]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Nash) (Con): All free school applications undergo a rigorous assessment against a number of criteria. The areas covered include: the education vision and plan for the school, which will cover its proposed aims and ethos; and the capacity and capability of the applicant group, which covers the track record and expertise of the trust members and proposed governing body, as well as their plans for recruiting a high quality principal. We also carry out due diligence checks on the suitability and track record of key members of the proposer group. The assessment criteria for the next round of applications will be published on the Department’s website shortly.

Where an application is approved into the pre-opening phase, those leading the project work closely with a named lead contact and an education adviser from the Department. Where any concerns are reported, including about their leadership, aims or ethos, the matter is escalated and an early decision is taken on what action to take in response, which may include cancellation of the project.

Schools: Sex and Relationship Education

Question

Asked by Baroness Scotland of Asthal

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Nash on 21 October (WA 124), what they consider to constitute “direct promotion of any sexual orientation”; and what effect that has on providing tailored support and guidance to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.[HL2853]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Nash) (Con): Statutory guidance is clear that schools should teach young people to understand human sexuality and to respect themselves and others. Young people, whatever their developing sexuality, need to feel that sex and relationship education is relevant to them and sensitive to their needs. Skilled teachers can be trusted to tackle this issue with insight and sensitivity. Teachers must have regard to statutory

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA247

guidance, and should draw on tailored support and guidance provided by specialist organisations such as the Sex Education Forum.

Scotland: Block Grants

Question

Asked by Lord Kilclooney

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what was the total amount of the block grant transferred by HM Treasury to Scotland for each of the past three years for which figures are available.[HL2773]

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Deighton) (Con): The data requested is set out in the table below:

2010-112011-122012-13
£m£m£m

28,870

27,921

28,281

Television Licence Fee: Court Proceedings

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord McNally on 29 August (WA 383–4), how many of the people found guilty of installing or using a television receiver without the appropriate licence in England in 2012 were fined; how many were imprisoned; and how many of the fines remain unpaid or resulted in imprisonment for failure to pay.[HL2531]

The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord McNally) (LD): The number of persons found guilty and sentenced at all courts for installing or using a television receiver without the appropriate licence in England, 2012, can be viewed in Table 1.

The number of fine defaulters received into prison for defaulting on a fine received for non-payment of a TV licence, in England and Wales, 2012, can be viewed in Table 2. It is not possible to identify how many of these offenders had committed their offence, or were originally sentenced to the fine, in a court in England.

HMCTS systems cannot identify the amount of fines outstanding for specific offences. This information could only be provided at disproportionate cost as it would require a manual search of all live fine accounts.

Persons proceeded against at magistrates courts and found guilty and sentenced at all courts for installing or using a television receiver without the appropriate licence(1), in England, 2012(2)(3)
YearProceeded againstFound guiltySentenced of which:FineImmediate custody

2012

181,880

155,135

155,135

154,399

‘=’ Nil

(1)

Includes offences under Sections 363 (2) & 4, Sec 363(a) & 4 of Communication Act 2003 and sec5 (1)(b)(i), and Sec5(1)(b)(ii) of Wireless Telegraphy Act 1949.

29 Oct 2013 : Column WA248

(2)

The figures given in the table on court proceedings 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.

Source:

Justice Statistics Analytical Services - Ministry of Justice.

POC HL 2531

Fine defaulters received into prison for defaulting on a fine received for the offence of non-payment of a TV licence, England and Wales, 2012 (1)
2012

Fine defaulters received into prison

51

(1)

These figures have been drawn from administrative IT systems which, as with any large scale recording system, are subject to possible errors with data entry and processing.

Source:

Justice Statistics Analytical Services - Ministry of Justice.

PQC HL 2531

Young People: Self-harm and Suicide

Question

Asked by Baroness Scotland of Asthal

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the level of self-harm and attempted suicide among lesbian and gay youth.[HL2616]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe) (Con): The Department is aware that studies suggest that the suicide rate amongst teenagers is below that in the general population; however self-harm is particularly common among young people.

In September 2012, alongside Preventing suicide in England: A cross-government outcomes strategy to save lives, a copy of which has already been placed in the Library, the Department also published Preventing suicide in England: A cross-government outcomes strategy to save lives, Assessment of impact on equalities, a copy of which has been placed in the Library. Both documents are available on the Department’s website. This considers the evidence surrounding suicide and self-harm in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people, and others with protected characteristics.

A review of the research literature suggests that lesbian, gay and bisexual people are at higher risk of mental disorder, suicide ideation, substance misuse and deliberate self-harm.

A survey commissioned by Stonewall in 2011, further suggests that young gay and bisexual men have a particularly high prevalence of suicide attempt, with one in ten gay and bisexual men aged 16 to 19 attempting to take their own life in the previous year.