Written Answers To Questions
Friday 29 November 1985
asked the Paymaster General if he will publish a table showing (a) the number and percentage
|Changes in the numbers of employees in employment between June 1979 and June 1985|
|Northern region||Great Britain|
|Thousand||Per cent.||Thousand||Per cent.|
|All industries and services||-219||-18||-1,812||-8|
|Metal goods, engineering and vehicles||-60||-33||-781||-23|
|Shipbuilding and repairing||NA||NA||-51||-36|
|Electrical and electronic engineering||NA||NA||-104||-14|
asked the Paymaster General how many people were in (a) full-time and (b) part-time employment in the Wirral and Chester travel-to-work areas in 1979, and at the latest available date.
Comprehensive employment statistics for travel-to-work areas are not available except for dates when censuses of employment are taken. Censuses have been taken triennially since 1978 and the latest results are for September 1981.Results of the 1978 census of employment are not available for the travel-to-work areas announced last year, but figures for the area covered by the old Chester and Birkenhead travel-to-work areas, which corresponds most closely to the Wirral and Chester travel-to-work area, are as follows:
|Employees in employment|
of jobs lost in the northern region and in Britain between June 1979 and June 1985 in (i) all manufacturing industries, (ii) service industries, (iii) all industries, (iv) shipbuilding and (v) engineering industries and (b) the numbers of long-term unemployed as a proportion of all those in (1) full-time employment and (2) all employment in the northern region and in Britain in June 1979 and June 1985.
The following table contains the changes for the areas, dates and categories specified. Separate statistics are available for the shipbuilding and engineering industries only at national level. At regional level they are included in the metal goods, engineering and vehicles industries—division 3 of the 1980 standard industrial classification.More up-to-date employment figures for travel-to-work areas will become available following the publication of the 1984 census of employment in the spring of 1986.
asked the Paymaster General what is the breakdown of unemployed people (a) by sex and (b) by duration for each of the years since 1979 for the London borough of Wandsworth.
The following information is in the Library. The table gives the breakdown of unemployed claimants by sex and duration for October 1984 and October 1985. Statistics of unemployment for local authority districts are derived from the new ward-based system. At present the analysis by duration is only available from April 1984 onwards, but information back to June 1983 will shortly be available.
|London borough of Wandsworth|
|11 October 1984||10 October 1985|
|Duration of unemployment in weeks|
|One or less||347||200||307||202|
|Over 1 and up to 2||358||225||349||217|
|Over 2 and up to 4||562||327||581||356|
|Over 4 and up to 6||628||425||620||397|
|Over 4 and up to 8||390||212||395||225|
|Over 8 and up to 13||853||508||863||457|
|Over 13 and up to 26||1,611||829||1,676||934|
|Over 26 and up to 39||1,186||492||1,085||525|
|Over 39 and up to 52||897||381||797||352|
|Over 52 and up to 65||743||303||736||309|
|Over 65 and up to 78||535||165||533||186|
|Over 78 and up to 104||901||250||800||220|
11 October 1984
10 October 1985
|Over 104 and up to 156||1,147||323||1,163||350|
|Over 156 and up to 208||704||133||751||198|
|Over 208 and up to 260||391||52||514||95|
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many places are currently taken on the community programme for crime prevention projects.
I have been asked to reply. Information about numbers on this type of community programme project is not currently available. However, it is being collated as part of the initiative being undertaken with my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary to ensure that worthwhile and practical crime prevention projects are mounted, as the programme expands to 230,000 places. I shall write to my hon. Friend as soon as the information is available.
Ault And Wiborg Paint Factory, Perivale
asked the Paymaster General if the Health and Safety Executive is satisfied with the current and proposed standards of health and safety at the Ault and Wiborg paint factory in Perivale; and if will make a statement.
The Health and Safety Executive has required improvements to the standards of health and safety at the factory. When the work is complete, the standards required will have been met.
Pneumoconiosis (Compensation Payments)
asked the Paymaster General how many cases have been approved for compensation payments during the past 12 months under the Pneumoconiosis etc. (Workers Compensation) Act 1979; what has been the average payment made in these cases; what is the total number of cases for which payment has been made since this Act came into force; and what is the total compensation paid over the period and the average compensation corresponding to these figures.
The information requested is as follows:
|Approved applications||Total paid £||Average payment £|
|1 November 1984 to 31 October 1985||67||427,956||6,387|
|4 July 1979 to 31 October 1985||4,527||26,359,136||5,823|
465. The figures for the period 4 July 1979 to 30 June 1985 should have read:
Total paid £
Average payment £
asked the Paymaster General, pursuant to his reply of 22 November, Official Report, column 326, what is his estimate of the number of small businesses which would be affected by the estimated loss of 20,000 retail jobs following the deregulation of Sunday trading.
We are not in a position to make such an estimate. The study by the Institute for Fiscal Studies which indicated that up to 20,000 jobs may be lost did not make any estimate of the number of small businesses which could be affected.
asked the Paymaster General, pursuant to his reply of 22 November, Official Report, column 326, what information he has as to the percentage of retailers who expect an increase in sales following the deregulation of Sunday trading.
A number of retailers have indicated that they expect sales to increase following the deregulation of Sunday trading, but we are not in a position to estimate what proportion of retailers as a whole expect increases.
asked the Paymaster General whether he has had any discussions with representatives of the small retail trade or its employees about the employment implications of the deregulation of Sunday trading: and if he will make a statement.
We have had no such discussions, but Ministers at the Home Office have met employee representatives.
asked the Paymaster General, pursuant to his reply of 22 November, Official Report, column 326, what assumptions are made in the estimate that 22,000 new jobs could be generated following the deregulation of Sunday trading as to the relative growth of small retail outlets on the one hand and larger retail concens on the other.
We are not in a position to make such an estimate. The Institute for Fiscal Studies who suggested that a 2 per cent. increase in sales may lead to an additional 22,000 jobs did not allocate these new jobs between firms of different sizes.
asked the Secretary of State for Employment if, pursuant to his reply of 22 November, Official Report, column 326, he will list those reasons not specified in that answer as to why he regards as pessimistic the assessment that 20,000 jobs could be lost following the deregulation of Sunday training.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies' assessment takes no account of the fact that some shops already trade on Sunday. Nor did it take into account the possibility that deregulation of Sunday trading may increase jobs in related sectors of the economy.
Advancement Of Women
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) if he has had any meetings with the Equal Opportunities Commission to discuss the implementation of those parts of the Nairobi conference on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women relevant to his Department; and if he has any future plans for such meetings;(2) what steps he is taking to evaluate the progress in implementing those parts of the United Nations Nairobi conference on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women which apply to his Department; what resources he has allocated to this; and if he will make a statement;(3) what plans he has for implementing paragraph 58 of the Nairobi conference on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women, relating to the collection of statistics on the situation of women;(4) whether he will establish a special office within his Department to monitor periodically and accelerate the
|Department of Agriculture|
|Agricultural Research Institute||9||9||—|
|Fisheries Conservancy Board for Northern Ireland||21||21||—|
|Foyle Fisheries Commission||4||4||—|
|Livestock Marketing Commission for Northern Ireland||7||6||1|
|Milk Marketing Board||13||13||—|
|Northern Ireland Agricultural Wages Board||15||15||—|
|Northern Ireland Drainage Council||17||17||—|
|Northern Ireland Fishery Harbour Authority||6||6||—|
|Northern Ireland Water Council||15||14||1|
|Pigs Production Development Committee||8||8||—|
|Water Appeals Commission||2||2||—|
|Department of Economic Development|
|Belfast Harbour Commissioners||14||14||—|
|Board of Directors:|
|Harland & Wolff Ltd.||15||15||—|
|Short Bros. Ltd.||11||11||—|
|Compensation Tribunal (Loss of Employment through Civil Unrest)||3||3||—|
|Committees for the Employment of Disabled People (three)||39||33||6|
|Equal Opportunities Commission||11||5||6|
|Fair Employment Agency||12||10||2|
|Fair Employment Appeals Board||3||3||—|
|Health and Safety Agency||9||8||1|
|Industrial Development Board||12||12||—|
|Labour Relations Agency||10||9||1|
|Local Enterprise Development Unit||9||8||1|
|Local Enterprise Development Unit—Area Panels (four)||27||26||1|
|General Consumer Council||18||8||10|
|Northern Ireland Electricity Service Board||8||7||1|
|Northern Ireland Industrial Court||22||21||1|
|Northern Ireland Industrial Tribunals||147||133||14|
|Northern Ireland Training Authority||19||18||1|
|Northern Ireland Tourist Board||11||9||2|
|Londonderry Port and Harbour Commission||8||8||—|
|Training Boards for:|
|Food and Drink Industry||22||21||1|
|Road Transport Industry||16||16||—|
process towards the equitable representation of women along the lines of paragraph 88 of the conclusions of the Nairobi conference on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women.
The final report of the Nairobi conference has only recently become available and I am considering what steps might be appropriate in respect of Northern Ireland.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will list those bodies to which his Department makes appointments, the number of appointees and the number of these who are women.
The Northern Ireland bodies to which I make appointments or to which appointments are made by Northern Ireland Departments subject to my direction and control are listed with the total number of appointees and the number of women currently serving on each of these bodies:
|Ulster Sheltered Employment Ltd.||6||5||1|
|Wages Council (nine)||161||149||12|
|Warrenpoint Harbour Authority||9||9||—|
Department of Education
|Armagh Observatory—Board of Governors||6||6||—|
|Arts Council for Northern Ireland—Board of Governors||18||15||3|
|Board of Governors:|
|Stranmillis College of Education||16||15||1|
|St. Joseph's College of Education||17||17||—|
|St. Mary's College of Education||16||10||6|
|Council for Continuing Education||34||31||3|
|Education and Library Boards:|
|Negotiating Machinery for Teachers' Salaries and Conditions of Service: Salaries negotiating Committee (schools)||11||11||—|
|Conditions of service negotiating committee (schools)||12||11||1|
|Negotiating committee for academic staff in three Colleges of Education||9||6||3|
|Negotiating committee for Further Education||8||8||—|
|Northern Ireland BTEC Liaison Committee||27||24||3|
|Northern Ireland Council for Educational Development||39||34||5|
|Northern Ireland Schools Examination Council||40||32||8|
|Sports Council for Northern Ireland||19||14||5|
|Queen's University Senate||5||3||2|
|Standing Conference for Primary Education||14||13||1|
|Standing Conference for Secondary Education||16||13||3|
|Standing Conference for Technical Education||16||15||1|
|The Staff Commission for Education and Library Boards||13||10||3|
|Ulster Folk and Transport Museum||16||14||2|
|Youth Committee for Northern Ireland||25||21||4|
|Visitor to the University of Ulster||1||1||—|
Department of the Environment
|Committee for Nature Conservation||13||10||3|
|Fire Authority for Northern Ireland||17||15||2|
|Historic Buildings Council||14||12||2|
|Historic Monuments Council||16||14||2|
|Local Government Staff Commission for Northern Ireland||13||10||3|
|National House Building Council—Northern Ireland Committee||7||7||—|
|Northern Ireland Construction Industry Advisory Council||10||10||—|
|Northern Ireland Housing Executive||10||8||2|
|Northern Ireland Local Government Superannuation Committee||17||16||1|
|Northern Ireland Transport Holding Company||7||7|
|Northern Ireland Railways Ltd.||5||5||—|
|Citybus Ltd./Ulsterbus Ltd.||5||4||1|
|Northern Ireland Airports Ltd.||6||6||—|
|Planning Appeals Commission||10||8||2|
|Rent Assessment Panel||50||39||11|
|Ulster Countryside Committee||12||10||2|
|Compensation Appeals Tribunal||3||3||—|
|Northern Ireland Building Regulations Advisory Committee||15||15||—|
|Lagan Valley Regional Park (Sub-Committee of UCC)||13||11||2|
Department of Finance and Personnel
|Northern Ireland Economic Council||15||14||1|
|Charities Advisory Committee||5||5||—|
|Lay Observer under the Solicitors Order||1||1||—|
|Public Service Training Council||9||9||—|
|Security Appeal Board||3||3||—|
|Statute Law Committee||16||16||—|
|Ulster Savings Committee||39||34||5|
|Vaughans Charity (Trustees)||5||4||1|
Department of Health and Social Services
|Attendance Allowance Board||8||5||3|
|Central Advisory Committees for:|
|Personal Social Services||14||11||3|
|Distinction and Meritorious Service Award Committee||7||7||—|
|Health and Social Services Boards:|
|Mental Health Review Tribunals||6||5||1|
|Northern Ireland National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting||35||15||20|
|Northern Ireland Central Services Agency for Health and Social Services||16||16||—|
|Northern Ireland Health and Social Services Council||21||19||2|
|Northern Ireland Health and Social Services Training Council||13||10||3|
|Northern Ireland Council for Postgraduate Medical Education||31||30||1|
|Therapeutic Paramedical Advisory Committee||13||1||12|
|Tribunal to inquire into the Disqualification of Persons providing General Practitioner Services||14||13||1|
Northern Ireland Office
|Board of Visitors:|
|Her Majesty's Prison, Armagh||12||5||7|
|Her Majesty's Prison, Belfast||24||16||8|
|Her Majesty's Prison, Magilligan||21||15||6|
|Her Majesty's Prison, Maze||30||20||10|
|Visiting Committee—Young Offenders' Centre—Hydebank Wood||18||9||9|
|Boundary Commission for Northern Ireland||4||4||—|
|Joint Consultative Committee for Prison Industries in Northern Ireland||5||5||—|
|Police Complaints Board for Northern Ireland||7||4||3|
|Probation Board for Northern Ireland||16||12||4|
|Rathgael and Whiteabbey Schools Management Board||15||11||4|
|Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights||13||9||4|
|District Electoral Areas Commission for Northern Ireland||1||1||—|
Education And Science
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what information he has as to the incidence of the practice of schoolchildren, some of whose teachers are on strike, being sent off school premises during periods in school hours when their teachers are not available; and if he will make a statement.
I have seen many reports of children being sent home or otherwise excluded from school premises because their teachers are taking disruptive action. Detailed information is however not available. I deplore any interruption of pupils' education arising from industrial action; apart from its effect on pupils' education and the deplorable example it sets, it results in inconvenience to both pupils and parents; harms relationships, behaviour and discipline; and risks children's safety and well-being. I look to local education authorities and schools to continue taking all possible measures to fulfil their responsibilities to the children in their care.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what is his response to the letter which he has received from the general secretary of the Professional Association of Teachers urging him to take measures to end the present teachers' dispute.
I am considering the letter which I have received from Mr. Peter Dawson, the general secretary of the Professional Association of Teachers, dated 20 November. I hope to reply shortly and the hon. Member may then wish to approach Mr. Dawson to see whether he is willing to release the content of my reply.
University Teacher Training Courses
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what reply he has sent to the letter which he has received from the general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers about the shortfall in applications for university teacher training courses.
I received the letter referred to by the hon. Member on Tuesday 26 November and will be replying in due course.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he intends to take to monitor the extent to which the guidance notes to local education authorities issued by his Department have been complied with.
There is no intention to monitor the extent to which local education authorities comply with the guidance notes. These notes are only a guide to the Education (Mandatory Awards) Regulations, and have no statutory authority.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he plans to re-establish his Department's former policy of publishing the breakdown of the main rates of grants allocated to university students.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he plans to amend the current criteria according to which rates of grants for university students are calculated.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science by how much he plans to increase the main rate of student grant outside London for the 1986–87 academic year.
A statement about the level of student grants for the academic year 1986–87 will be made in the next few weeks.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what progress has been made with his review of student awards at degree and sub-degree level.
I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to my hon. Friend the Member for Hornchurch (Mr. Squire) on 19 November 1985 at column 120.
Students (Residence Costs)
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will seek to amend section 8 of the Rent Act 1977 in respect of lettings to university students by educational institutions with a view to reducing board or residence costs incurred by students.
No. The Government's policy is that charges for educational residential accommodation, which need to cover specified running costs, should be determined by the institutions concerned.
Advancement Of Women
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he is taking to evaluate those parts of the United Nations Nairobi forward-looking strategies for advancement of women which apply to his Department; what resources he has allocated to this; and if he will make a statement.
The Government have made it clear on many occasions that it is essential to ensure that equal curricular opportunity is genuinely available at all levels within the education system, and our policies for education will continue to reflect that commitment to equal opportunities. We shall be considering the education recommendations in the Nairobi strategy document, many of which raise matters which are the responsibility of educational institutions themselves.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what plans he has for the implementation of paragraph 58 of the Nairobi forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women, which calls for the collection of timely and reliable statistics on the situation of women.
All regular collections of data about pupils, students, leavers, examination results and teachers provide for separate identification of boys and girls, men and women. Statistical summaries, which normally include separate figures for each sex, are available for departmental consideration within the academic year to which they apply. Subsequent publication retains the distinction when thought to be important.When ad hoc surveys are undertaken, it is customary to consider whether the design should allow for the preparation of reliable statistics for men and women separately. Such allowance is made in the majority of cases.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he is taking to seek to ensure that educational programmes enabling men to assume as much responsibility as women in the upbringing of children and the maintenance of the household are introduced at all levels of the educational system, as called for in paragraph 173 of the United Nations Nairobi forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women.
Detailed decisions on the curriculum in educational institution are for the institutions themselves. The Government have made it plain that what is taught in schools should be relevant to adult life and that there can be no room for discrimination in the curriculum on grounds of sex. Her Majesty's Inspectorate have recently published a discussion document on home economics in their "Curriculum matters" series: that document takes it as one of its starting-points that homemaking is equally important for boys and girls, and that in adult life the responsibilities of family life should be shared so that both men and women have sufficient opportunity to continue their own personal development.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he is taking to seek to implement paragraph 83 of the Nairobi forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women, calling for new teaching methods which emphasise the equality of the sexes.
Decisions on teaching methods and materials are for educational institutions themselves; attention should be given to the expectation and attitudes of girls when reaching those decisions.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he is taking to diversify women's vocational education and training in order to extend their opportunities for employment in occupations that are non-traditional or new to women, as called for in paragraph 171 of the United Nations Nairobi forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women.
The Government will continue to encourage girls and young women to take greater advantage of the full range of vocational education and training which is available. New approaches to education and training in the 14–18 age range are being explored by the technical and vocational education initiative, which is emphasing the need to avoid sex stereotyping; and the Government is seeking in a variety of ways to promote interest among girls and young women in the whole range of employment opportunities.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what meetings he has had with the Equal Opportunities Commission to discuss the implementation of those parts of the Nairobi forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women; and what future plans he has for such meetings.
My right hon. Friend is considering the implications of the Nairobi conference recommendations for Government policies in education, and has not met, or made any plans to meet, the Equal Opportunities Commission. Officials at the commission with responsibility for education maintain regular contact with the Department.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will publish in the Official Report those bodies to which his Department makes appointments and the number of appointees; and if he will specify in each case the number of women appointees.
The information requested is as follows:
|List of bodies to which appointments are made by or on behalf of the Secretary of State and the number of appointments to each|
|1 Advisory Board for the Research Councils||10||—|
|2 Advisory Committee for the Microelectronics Education Programme||5||—|
|3 Advisory Committee on Pesticides||11||—|
|4 Advisory Committee on the Misuse of Drugs||3||1|
|5 Agricultural and Food Research Council||15||—|
|6 Assessment of Performance Unit: Consultative Committee||9||3|
|7 British Museum (Natural History): Board of Trustees||1||—|
|8 Burnham Committees||1||—|
|9 Business & Technician Education Council||20||3|
|10 Central Bureau for Educational Visits and Exchanges: Board of Trustees||10||2|
|11 Centre for Information on Language Teaching and Research: Governing Board||13||1|
|12 Computer Board for Universities and Research Councils||9||—|
|13 Council for the Accreditation of Correspondence Colleges||4||2|
|14 Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education||16||3|
|15 Council for National Academic Awards||23||3|
|16 Council for Educational Technology for the United Kingdom||27||3|
|17 Economic and Social Research Council||16||2|
|18 Further Education Staff College: Governing Body||16||4|
|19 Further Education Unit: Board of Management||8||—|
|20 Health Education Council||1||2|
|21 Medical Research Council||14||1|
|22 National Advisory Body for Public Sector Higher Education||28||3|
|23 National Youth Bureau||1||—|
|24 Natural Environment Research Council||15||—|
|25 Royal Ballet School: Governing Body||1||1|
|26 School Curriculum Development Committee||14||9|
|27 Science and Engineering Research Council||14||1|
|28 Secondary Examination Council||13||2|
|29 United States/United Kingdom Educational Commission||2||1|
|30 University Grants Committee||18||1|
|30a Review of the UGC||8||1|
|31 University of Exeter: Court of Governors||—||1|
|32 University of London, Chelsea College: Council||1||—|
|33 London, Imperial College of Science and Technology: Governing Body||4||1|
|34 London, Royal Holloway College: Council||—||2|
|35 London, School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine: Court of Governors||1||—|
|36 Loughborough University of Technology: Council||1||—|
|37 University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology: Court of Governors||4||—|
|38 University of Wales Institute of Science and Technology: Council||1||—|
|39 St. David's University College, Lampeter: Council||1||—|
|40 Visiting Committee for the Cranfield Institute of Technology||8||—|
|41 Visiting Committee for the Open University||8||1|
|42 Visting Committee for the Royal College of Art||9||—|
|43 Voluntary Sector Consulative Council||10||3|
University Lecturers (Pay)
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what assessment he has made of the implications for the morale of university lecturers of current promotion prospects and real salary levels, and if he will make a statement.
I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave him yesterday at column 628.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what has been the trend in university lecturers' salaries in real terms since 1979.
I would refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, North-West (Dr. Hampson), on 19 November at column 127.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will list the bodies which have made representations to his Department about the introduction of the new subject entitled economic awareness which he is considering introducing into school curricula; and what discussions are presently taking place between officials of his Department and representatives of local education authorities and teachers on this issue.
The Department issued earlier this year a consultation letter to interested groups seeking comments on the Government's view that all pupils should be equipped by the age of 16 with some economic awareness and understanding. The letter made clear our view that this objective could be achieved through a wide range of subjects in the curriculum and that translation of the principle into action in the schools was a professional matter for teachers. Responses to the consultation letter have been received from the local authority associations, teachers' organisations, individual local education authorities, employers' groups and individual companies, and from other interested groups and correspondents. These responses are being considered.
Students (Financial Support)
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he has given any consideration to the possibility of providing financial support for students at the age of 16 years.
This is one of many aspects of policy on post-compulsory educational provision which is kept under review. However, the Government have no immediate plans to change the practice of successive previous Governments in regarding young people in non-advanced full-time education as primarily dependent on their parents for financial support until their 19th birthday. Parents receive child benefit in respect of such children, and in addition local education authorities have discretionary powers to pay grants and allowances to those in need.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science whether he has responded to the proposal by local education authorities to establish a national joint council to discuss pay and conditions of service for teachers; and if he will make a statement.
Yes. I said as long ago as last March that I am prepared to consider the case for change, but that before coming to a firm view on the matter I should want to be satisfied that any new arrangements would offer the prospect of being a real improvement on the existing ones. I still await the detailed submission of such a case by the local authorities.
Trainees And Students (Status And Income)
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what response he has made to the recommendation issued in the 24th Report of the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Communities 1984 (page xxviii) advocating a common status and income approach for all trainees and students.
The Government's response to the 24th report of the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Communities 1984 was given in the course of the debate on the report in the other place on 22 October. I draw the hon. Member's attention to what Lord Young of Graffham said about the recommendation for a common status and income for all trainees and students in his closing speech.
Primary Schools (Inner Cities)
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what research has been conducted by his Department into methods of raising standards in primary schools in inner city areas.
The Government's policy, as set out in the White Paper "Better Schools", is to raise standards in all schools, including primary schools in inner city areas, and a number of research projects currently being funded by the Department will contribute towards that objective. In addition, pilot projects to improve the quality of education in selected primary schools in deprived urban areas have been approved for education support grant starting in 1985–86 in 12 local education authorities. These will cost approximately £3 million and will last from three to five years. Reports on the projects will be available to other schools and authorities.
House Of Commons
asked the Lord Privy Seal, how many meals were served in the Westminster Hall cafeteria during the lunch period on 21 November; and how many Members of either House, Officers and staff working within the Palace were unable to be served.
The number of meals served in the Westminster Hall cafeteria during the luncheon period of 21 November was 350. It is impossible to determine how many Members of either House, Officers or others within the Palace were unable to be served.
asked the Lord Privy Seal how many meals were served in the Strangers' cafeteria during the lunch period on 21 November; and how many Members of either House, Officers and staff working within the Palace were unable to be served.
The number of meals served in the Strangers' cafeteria during the luncheon period of 21 November was 600. It is impossible to determine how many Members of either House, Officers or others within the Palace were unable to be served.
asked the Lord Privy Seal how many meals were served in the Members' cafeteria during the lunch period on 21 November; how many Members of either House and others working within the Palace were unable to be served; and how many strangers were unable to be served.
The number of meals served in the Members' cafeteria during the luncheon period of 21 November was 150. It is impossible to determine how many Members of either House, Officers or others within the Palace were unable to be served.
asked the Lord Privy Seal how many meals were served in the Harcourt room during the lunch period on 21 November; and how many Members of either House, Officers and staff working within the Palace were unable to be served.
The number of meals served in the Harcourt grill room during the luncheon period of 21 November was 80. It is impossible to determine how many Members of either House, Officers or others within the Palace were unable to be served.
asked the Lord Privy Seal how many meals were served in the Strangers' dining room during the lunch period on 21 November; and how many Members of either House, Officers and others within the Palace were unable to be served.
The number of meals served in the Strangers' dining room during the luncheon period of 21 November was 80. It is impossible to determine how many Members of either House, Officers or others within the Palace were unable to be served.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement with regard to the payment of compensation to persons who have been wrongly convicted of criminal offences.
There is no statutory provision for the payment of compensation from public funds to persons charged with offences who are acquitted at trial or whose convictions are quashed on appeal, or to those granted free pardons by the exercise of the royal prerogative of mercy. Persons who have grounds for an action for unlawful arrest or malicious prosecution have a remedy in the civil courts against the person or authority responsible. For many years, however, it has been the practice for the Home Secretary, in exceptional circumstances, to authorise on application ex gratia payments from public funds to persons who have been detained in custody as a result of a wrongful conviction.In accordance with past practice, I have normally paid compensation on application to persons who have spent a period in custody and who receive a free pardon, or whose conviction is quashed by the Court of Appeal or the House of Lords following the reference of a case by me under section 17 of the Criminal Appeal Act 1968, or whose conviction is quashed by the Court of Appeal or the House of Lords following an appeal after the time normally allowed for such an appeal has lapsed. In future I shall be prepared to pay compensation to all such persons where this is required by our international obligations. The international convenant on civil and political rights [article 14.6] provides that:
"When a person has by a final decision been convicted of a criminal offence and when subsequently his conviction has been reversed, or he has been pardoned, on the ground that a new or newly discovered fact shows conclusively that there has been a miscarriage of justice, the person who has suffered punishment as a result of such conviction shall be compensated according to law, unless it is proved that the non-disclosure of the unknown fact in time is wholly or partly attributable to him".
I remain prepared to pay compensation to people who do not fall within the terms of the preceding paragraph but who have spent a period in custody following a wrongful conviction or charge, where I am satisfied that it has resulted from serious default on the part of a member of a police force or of some other public authority.
There may be exceptional circumstances that justify compensation in cases outside these categories. In particular, facts may emerge at trial, or on appeal within time, that completely exonerate the accused person. I am prepared, in principle, to pay compensation to people who have spent a period in custody or have been imprisoned in cases such as this. I will not, however, be prepared to pay compensation simply because at the trial or an appeal the prosecution was unable to sustain the burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt in relation to the specific charge that was brought.
It has been the practice sice 1957 for the amount of compensation to be fixed on the advice and recommendation of an independent assessor who, in considering claims, applies principles analogous to those on which claims for damages arising from civil wrongs are settled. The procedure followed was described by the then Home Secretary in a written reply to a question in the House of Commons on 29 July 1976 at columns 328–330. Although successive Home Secretaries have always accepted the assessor's advice, they have not been bound to do so. In future, however, I shall regard any recommendation as to amount made by the assessor in accordance with those principles as binding upon me. I have appointed Mr. Michael Ogden QC as the assessor for England and Wales. He will also assess any case that arises in Northern Ireland, where my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland intends to follow similar practice.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions his Department has had with police authorities and chief constables about the provision of Government funds to buy additional equipment for dealing with riots.
The Department's officials and Her Majesty's Inspectors of Constabulary keep in regular contact with chief officers of police about all aspects of the policing of their force areas including the availability of public order equipment. Government funding for properly incurred police expenditure is provided through the normal police grant arrangements.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when the Metropolitan police will be equipped with fireproof overalls and riot helmets with neck protection; and what information he has on plans for chief contables to purchase such equipment.
The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis informs me that all shield-trained officers in the Metropolitan police have been issued with riot helmets and fire resistant overalls, both which offer some neck protection. All other police forces in England and Wales hold stocks of riot helmets and fire resistant overalls or uniforms. Records of the exact type of protective equipment held by each force are not held centrally.
Young Offenders (Reconviction)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of all young offenders released from detention centres, and what proportion of juvenile offenders, are reconvicted within two years.
The latest available information relates to reconvictions of those discharged from prison department establishments in 1981 and is published in tables 8(e) and 8.4 of "Prison Statistics England and Wales 1984" (Cmnd. 9622).
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the absolute and the percentage increase in the number of offences of burglary recorded by the police between 1979 and 1984.
The number of offences of burglary recorded by the police increased by 348,300 or 63 per cent. between 1979 and 1984. Statistics of offences recorded by the police are published annually in "Criminal Statistics, England and Wales" and details of recorded offences of burglary are given in table 2.10 of the latest issue for 1984 (Cmnd. 9621).
Motor Cyclists (Speeding Offences)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many motor cyclists have been convicted of speeding in the Metropolitan police area in the period in which figures are available.
In 1984, the latest period for which information is available, there were about 1,900 findings of guilt at magistrates' courts in the Metropolitan police district for speed limit offences associated with motor cycles, mopeds and scooters.
Handsworth (Public Disorder)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the principal recommendations of the report by the chief constable of the west midlands on the Handsworth riots.
I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to a question from my hon. Friend the hon. Member for Birmingham, Perry Barr (Mr. Rooker) on 19 November, at column 142.
Victim Examination Suites
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has about which police forces have a victim examination suite in use and those which are planning to open victim examination suites within the next three years.
The Metropolitan police plan to introduce a number of victim examination suites consisting of a medical examination room, an interview room and shower facilities. The first such suite should open in Brentford shortly. In other police forces the examination of victims of rape and other sexual assaults is generally conducted in surgeon's rooms or in hospital.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what guidelines are being issued to chief constables on the creation of victim examination suites for the victims of rape and sexual assault.
Home Office circular 25/1983 containing general guidance on the treatment of rape victims was issued to chief officers of police in March 1983. Copies are in the Library. It recommended that medical examinations should take place in a proper clinical environment so as to reduce stress and produce an atmosphere of care and concern. The nature of the facilities which are required to meet this is a matter for individual police forces in consultation with police surgeons, taking account of the existing provisions which are locally available.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he has received any formal representations from Mr. W. M. Jadeson, assistant chief constable, Operation South Yorkshire, concerning the police view on civil disturbances; and if he will make a statement.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people were removed from the United Kingdom as illegal immigrants and overstayers, despite having remained here for over 10 years, in each of the years 1981 to 1985; and if he will make a statement as to his Department' policy towards such long-term overstayers.
The figures requested are not available. The immigration rules provide that in deciding whether to deport an overstayer, full account is to be taken of all the relevant circumstances, with the public interest being balanced against any compassionate factors, including length of residence. Similar considerations apply in deciding whether to remove illegal entrants. Continuous unlawful residence in the United Kingdom amounting to 10 or more years is considered a prima facie reason for allowing a person to remain. Account is also taken of any countervailing factors, such as a criminal record. Each case is considered on its merits.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will indicate, of the 100,790 visitors from the New Commonwealth and Pakistan in 1983 and the 105,850 New Commonwealth and Pakistan visitors in 1984, how many returned to their own countries at the end of their permitted stay, how many were granted an extension to their initial duration of stay and how many cannot be accounted for.
I shall reply as soon as possible.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what has been the total number of spouses admitted to the United Kingdom to accompany their immigrant partner in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available;(2) what has been the average number of children admitted to the United Kingdom to accompany their immigrant parents in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available;(3) what information he has concerning the average number of wives admitted to the United Kingdom to accompany immigrant husbands in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available.
The available information relates to all children and spouses accepted for settlement on arrival or on removal of time limit and is published annually in "Control of Immigration Statistics, United Kingdom". Figures for the latest 10 years are given in table 14 of the latest issue for 1984, (Cmnd. 9544.).
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has concerning the number of immigrant men who were accompanied on entry into the United Kingdom by one, two or three or more wives in the latest year for which figures are available.
The information requested is not available in this form.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has concerning the number of immigrant parents who were accompanied on entry into the United Kingdom by one, two, three or four or more children in the latest year for which figures are available.
The specific information requested is not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. However, information is available on the numbers of children accompanying wives granted entry clearance in the Indian subcontinent for settlement in the United Kingdom: in 1984, 560 such wives were accompanied by one child, 470 by two, 370 by three and 390 by four or more. These figures exclude any children granted entry clearance who were born after their mother lodged her application.
Drug Traffickers (Assets)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions are presently taking place with other countries on arrangements to ensure that court orders made in one jurisdiction over assets belonging to suspected drug traffickers are enforceable in another; what progress has been made so far; and if he will make a statement.
No detailed negotiations are yet taking place with countries outside the United Kingdom on this matter; but we have it in mind to seek such arrangements once Parliament has had an opportunity to consider the Government's proposals for legislation on the confiscation of drug traffickers' profits.
Prisons (Winson Green And Featherstone)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the maximum of prisoners who are employed in workshops in Her Majesty's prisons Winson Green and Featherstone in any one day.
The maximum number of prisoners employed in workshops in Her Majesty's prison Winson Green on any one day is 157. The maximum number of prisoners employed in workshops in Her Majesty's prison Featherstone in any one day is 266.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many square feet of exercise space are available to prisoners in Her Majesty's prisons Winson Green and Featherstone.
As I stated in my reply to a question from the hon. Member for Birmingham, Erdington, (Mr. Corbett) on 18 November, Winson Green prison, Birmingham, has available 46,000 sq ft in exercise yards and 8,500 sq ft in the gymnasium.Featherstone prison has available 40,000 sq ft in exercise yards, 6,700 sq ft in the gymnasium and 400,000 sq ft in grassed and hard-surfaced sports pitches.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department for how many hours in the week ended 2 November the workshops in Her Majesty's prisons Winson Green and Featherstone were open; what was the average number of prisoners employed in each establishment; how many classes took place and for how many hours; what was the average number of prisoners in each class; how many individual prisoners attended at least one class during the week; and how much time on average each prisoner spent out of his cell during that week.
In the week ended 2 November one of the two workshops at Featherstone prison was opened for 29 hours. The other workshop was open for 26 hours, having been closed for half a day to enable a security search to be undertaken. The two workshops employ an average of 118 and 134 prisoners respectively. In addition, 222 prisoners were employed on domestic, catering, maintenance and farm duties.Forty six classes were held during that week with total class hours of 76. The average number of inmates attending each class was nine. One hundred and fifty-nine inmates attended at least one class which represents 34 per cent. of the total population. It is not possible other than at disproportionate cost, to calculate the average amount of time spent out of cells.The information relating to Birmingham prison was given in a reply to the hon. Member for Birmingham, Erdington (Mr. Corbett) at column
12 on 18 November.
Advancement Of Women
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how Her Majesty's Government intend to implement paragraph 58 of the document agreed at the Nairobi conference on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women, relating to the collection of statistics on the situation of women.
A good deal of relevant statistical information is already being collected by Government Departments and other public bodies. Much of this is published. In addition, the Equal Opportunities Commission regularly publishes, as part of its annual report, a digest of selected statistics to depict the relative position of men and women in British society. The Government are not, therefore, short of statistical material with which to assess progress towards equality between men and women.
Commander P Corbett (North Devon Trip)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will call for a report from the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis as to the status of the trip in a chauffeur-driven car by Commander Phil Corbett of the Metropolitan police to North Devon to meet retired police officer Harry Clement about an interview he had given to the BBC; what was the cost of the trip and the overnight stay of Commander Corbett and his driver.
[pursuant to his reply, 12 November 1985, c. 25]: The information requested is as follows:I understand from the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis that a visit was made by Commander Corbett to North Devon in the course of operational duties. The visit was authorised by a senior officer in the specialist operations department and cost approximately £77.
Ec (Vat Resource Base)
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer, on current projects, in which year the value added tax resource base of the European Economic Community will have to be increased beyond 1·4 per cent. to make provision for the projected United Kingdom refund provided for by the Fontainebleau agreement.
The Commission's latest financial forecast indicates that the 1·4 per cent. VAT ceiling should be sufficient to finance all the Community's needs, including the abatement, up to the end of the forecast period in 1988. No forecast has yet been made for later years.
Cable And Wireless
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was the total cost of the publicity campaign associated with the sale of the Government's remaining assets in Cable and Wireless.
It will not be possible to give the cost to the Government until after the sale is completed.
Local Authorities (Housing Allocations)
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how the local authority housing allocation for 1986–87 will compare with the current year; and if he will make a statement.
The total housing investment programme allocations for English local authorities in 1986–87 will be £146 million. The corresponding figures for 1985–86 was £1,600 million. In setting this figure we have taken account of increased spending power from receipts and of the increasing use local authorities are making of other opportunities for capital expenditure.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what was the cost to the London Docklands Development Corporation of building the red brick road on Canary wharf and the subsequent costs of relaying this road.
The cost to the LDDC of building the red brick road on Canary wharf was £474,000, including drainage work and professional fees. This form of construction was chosen to allow the materials to be reused, if necessary, greatly reducing the cost of any subsequent road on which they are used.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what existing firms in Cannon workshops would be required to move out as a result of the proposed Canary wharf development proceeding.
The existing firms in the new, unlisted part of the Cannon workshops would be displaced by the Canary wharf development. It is the LDDC's intention, however, to ensure that alternative accommodation is made available and that all out-of-pocket expenses incurred as a result of any move are reimbursed.
Housing Defects Act
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will include pre-war Laing's Easiform housing in the list of housing types covered by the Housing Defects Act.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will seek to implement that part of the Ratcliffe report which recommends a time limit for decisions on any planning application.
I am not aware of the report to which my hon. Friend refers. Under section 37 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971, article 7 of the Town and Country Planning General Development Order 1977 already prescribes such a limit in that where the authority does not give notice of its decision to the applicant within eight weeks from the date when the application was received, or within any extended period agreed between the applicant and the authority, the applicant may appeal to the Secretary of State for a decision.
Housing For The Disabled
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what assessment he has made of the implications of implementing circular 26/85, relating to the withdrawal of improvement grants for council house tenants, for the work on the Wakefield metropolitan district council on adaptations to council houses for the disabled and the infirm; and if he will make a statement;(2) what assessment he has made of the implications for handicapped and infirm council house tenants of implementing circular 26/85 of the withdrawal of improvement grants for council house tenants.
The circular does not withdraw grants for council house tenants. It does, however, state that, for grants approved on or after 2 December 1985, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State will not normally pay Exchequer contribution towards grants where the grant is paid to a tenant of the local authority and the authority intends to pay all or part of that proportion of the cost which is not met by the grant. However, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State is prepared to consider individual applications by local authorities for payment of Exchequer contribution.
Trade And Industry
English Industrial Estates
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what are his future plans for English Industrial Estates; and if he will make a statement.
I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. and learned Friend, the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, to my hon. Friend the Member for Mid-Staffordshire (Mr. Heddle) on 27 November 1985 at column 880.
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he proposes to introduce legislation requiring auditors to report cases of fraud.
In the context of financial services this is one of the questions discussed in a consultative document that my Department will be issuing shortly on the role of auditors in that sector. I shall obviously want to consider the responses, but my current view is that much could be done if auditors took a more positive view of their role in relation to the reporting of suspected fraud. I welcome the recent initiatives which the accountancy profession has taken in that direction.
Financial Services And Investor Protection
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list in the Official Report the names of those organisations which have made representations to him on the White Paper, "Financial Services in the United Kingdom; a New Framework for Investor Protection."
Representations on the White Paper "Financial Services in the United Kingdom: A New Framework for Investor Protection"—Cmnd. 9432—were received from the following organisations and associations:
- Associated Scottish Life Offices
- Association of British Insurers
- Association of Corporate Trustees
- Association of Futures Brokers and Dealers
- Association of Investment Trust Companies
- British Insurance Association
- British Insurance Brokers Association
- Building Societies Association
- British Soluble Coffee Manufacturers Association
- City Capital Markets Committee
- Confederation of British Industry
- Consumers Association
- Corporation of Insurance and Financial Advisors
- Council for Securities Industry
- Friendly Societies Liaison Committee
- The Industrial Society
- Industrial Life Offices Association
- Institute of Chartered Accountants of England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland (jointly)
- Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators
- Institute of Cost and Management Accountants
- Life Insurance Association
- Life Offices Association
- Linked Life Assurance Group
- London Commodity Exchange
- London Metal Exchange
- The Newspaper Society
- National Association of Pension Funds
- National Association of Security Dealers and Investment
- National Consumer Council
- National Federation of Consumer Groups
- Registry of Life Assurance Commission
- Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors
- Society of Company and Commercial Accountants
- Society of Investment Analysts
- Society of Pension Consultants
- The Stock Exchange
- Trades Union Congress
- Unit Trust Association
- Wider Share Ownership Council
High Technology Exports
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many references his officials have made in the past year to United States officials in relation to high technology exports from the United Kingdom where the goods were assembled or manufactured in the United Kingdom.
My officials regularly remind United States officials of the Government's continuing objection to United States claims to extraterritorial control over exports and from time to time take up problems which arise. No figures for such references are available.
Turkey (Velvet Imports)
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what agreement has been reached with Turkey regarding an import quota for velvet for 1986.
Discussions are in progress between the European Commission and the Turkish authorities concerning voluntary restraint on the export to the Community of a number of textile products including velvet, but agreement has not yet been reached.
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he has received any representations concerning the implications of the current external financing limit for the capital investment programme of the Post Office; and if he will make a statement.
[pursuant to his reply, 28 November 1985, c. 625]: I have received no such specific representations. The Post Office did, however, make its views known during the general discussions that it had with my Department about future financing needs.
Listed Properties, Eldon Street, Glasgow
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland, if he will make a statement on the further representations he has received since the recent meeting between the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, the hon. Member for Edinburgh, South (Mr. Ancram) and the hon. Member for Glasgow, Maryhill, from Glasgow district council and local residents in the Woodlands area of the city about the retention and improvement for housing of the listed properties at 15, 25 and 35 Eldon street; and what consideration he is giving to local representations on this matter.
Since the meeting referred to by the hon. Member, I have received representations from one resident in the Woodlands area of the city. My right hon. Friend is continuing to give consideration to the future of the site and a decision will be taken shortly.
Legionnaire's Disease, Glasgow
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to the answer of 14 November, Official Report, column 253, if, in the light of the futher outbreaks of Legionnaire's disease in Glasgow since 14 November, he will reconsider his decision not to establish a public inquiry into the causes of all the recent outbreaks and into means of preventing a recurrence; and if he will make a statement.
I am confident that the Greater Glasgow health board is well able to carry out the necessary investigations into these regrettable incidents; and that a public inquiry, which would of course impose heavy demands on the experts now dealing urgently with the problem, would add little to what is already known about the source of the infection and the means of preventing a recurrence.
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will make a further statement about the postgraduate preservice training of teachers in Scotland.
Since my previous statement in response to my hon. Friend's question on 27 June 1984, the Government have taken significant steps towards improving the pre-service training of teachers and thus the overall quality of the teaching force. A major development at the start of the 1984–85 academic session was the introduction of new four-year BEd degree courses leading to a qualification for primary teaching, in replacement of the three-year primary diploma courses which are being phased out. The effect will be that primary teaching will in due course become an all-graduate profession.I have now decided that the other route to teaching in primary schools—the one-year postgraduate courses—should be revised in accordance with the principal recommendations contained in the final report of the working party on primary pre-service teacher training. The length of the courses will be extended from 32 to 36 weeks; the content will be improved to provide a coherent course with three main elements—school experience, professional studies and curriculum studies; and the courses will be externally validated. I consider that it will be practicable to make significant progress along the lines indicated by the working party without any overall increase in resources for education authorities or colleges of education. The colleges have already been given preliminary thought to the introduction of new courses on the basis of the broad guidelines in the report. I hope that they will now submit firm proposals so that the revised primary postgraduate courses may be introduced in the 1986–87 academic session.In July I received the report of an equivalent working party on secondary postgraduate courses which I established in September 1984. I have arranged for its publication today; copies have been placed in the Library. The main recommendations broadly mirror those of the primary working party, including an extension of the courses to 36 weeks. I welcome these recommendations and am inviting the colleges of education concerned to submit proposals with the object of introducing revised and extended secondary postgraduate courses in the 1987–88 session.The working party on secondary postgraduate courses recommended in addition that final registration of a secondary teacher with the General Teaching Council for Scotland should be dependent on a further four-week course at a college of education towards the end of the teacher's two-year probationary period. This is a radical suggestion, with implications for primary teachers also, which in my view requires more detailed consideration. I propose therefore to consult interested bodies on support and assessment arrangements for probationary teachers before making any change.I am very grateful to the members of both working parties for their reports. I am sure that the changes now in prospect will make a further important contribution towards enhancing the quality of teaching in Scottish schools.
Agriculture, Fisheries And Food
Monofilament Drift Nets
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food why he has rejected the banning of monofilament drift nets as a method of conserving salmon.
I am not aware of any scientific evidence that would justify the banning of monofilament drift nets because of their effect on salmon stocks. Monofilament drift nets are also used for catching white fish. I consider therefore that the measures announced on 7 November represent the best approach to tightening control over the level of drift net fishing for salmon off the north east coast of England.
Cereals (Co-Responsibility Tax)
asked the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what assessment he has made of the effect on the relative levels of incidence of the co-responsibility tax on cereal producers in (a) the United Kingdom and (b) in other continental countries of (i) the proposed exemption of farmers producing less than 25 tonnes and (ii) the proposed exemption of all inter-farming trade; and if he will make a statement on the implications of the current proposals for United kingdom cereal producers.
The Commission suggests a co-responsibility levy on sales of cereals off the farm, from which the first 25 tonnes would be exempt. Many details need to be clarified.No information is available about sales of cereals from individual farms in the Community. But aggregate data provided by the Commission for 1984–85 suggest that about one quarter of cereals production in the EC Ten was not sold off the farm of production: the equivalent figure for the United Kingdom was about one-eighth. If this information is combined with that available from the 1979–80 EC structure survey, it can be estimated that approximately a further quarter of production in the Community of Ten might be exempted by a levy-free allowance of 25 tonnes, compared with roughly one-tenth in the United Kingdom. Thus the proportion of total EC Ten production subject to levy might be about one half compared with about three quarters for the United Kingdom.I must emphasise that these are very broad approximations dependent on several arbitrary assumptions: they take no account of how producers might adjust the proportion of sales after imposition of the levy. No data are available for Spain and Portugal.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what steps he has taken to allow the staff of Soil Survey to seek alternative sources of funding before the cutbacks in resources affect their work.
In January this year I announced that, following a review of needs and priorities in relation to soil research, my Department's funding of the Soil Survey would remain unchanged in 1985–86, but would be reduced to half its current level in 1986–87. This early notification of the level of funding which will apply next year was intended to give the Soil Survey an opportunity to develop its funding from commercial activities. I understand that the income from such work is rising.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list the quotas on milk production in each European Economic Community country; what quota has been allocated to Spain and Portugal; what is his estimate of total demand in 1986: and what effect the quota allocated to Spain and Portugal will have on excess supply in the European Community in 1986.
The total quota allocated to each member state for 1985–86 is shown in the table below. Spain has been allocated a quota of 5·4 million tonnes. No quota has yet been allocated to Portugal.The Commission estimates consumption in the present 10 member states at about 85 million tonnes in 1986. The accession of Spain and Portugal is not expected to have a significant effect on the Community's overall milk surplus; Spain is broadly self sufficient' in some of the main dairy products and a net importer in others; Portugal is a net importer in most of these products.
|1985–86 milk quotas for each EC member state|
|('000 tonnes) Total wholesale and direct sales quota|
|United Kingdom||* 15,790|
|*Including following quantities from Community reserves:|
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what are the current levels of production and demand for olive oil in the European Community; if he will estimate the increase in production and demand levels which will occur with the accession of Spain and Portugal; and what is the current amount spent on storage and subsequent disposal or sale of olive oil.
1984/85 Community production of olive oil was estimated at 717,000 tonnes*. 1985/86 production is forecast at 800,000 tonnes†. Demand in the European Community in 1984–85 has been estimated at 947,000 tonnes*. Production in Spain and Portugal in 1984–85 was estimated at 769,000 tonnes*, but a much lower production, probably below 500,000 tonnes† is expected in 1985–86. Demand in Spain and Portugal in 1984–85 has been estimated at 463,000 tonnes*. The 1985 Community budget provided for 22 million ecu for intervention costs.Sources: * Oil World† Management Committee
Chief Executive, Royal Dockyards
asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will publish in the Official Report a table for the years 1979 to 1985 showing separately by location and distinguishing civilians from naval staff the number of employees falling within the control of the chief executive, royal dockyards.
I shall answer shortly.
American Military Bases
asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the number of American military installations, stores and bases in the United Kingdom; and what is the definition of each of these terms used in drawing up the list.
I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by my hon. Friend the Minister of State for Defence Procurement to the hon. Member for Kingston upon Hull, North (Mr. McNamara) on 27 November at columns 577–8. Main operating bases are permanent large scale operational installations and standby deployment bases are reserve airfields which can be activated in time of emergency and which may be used for exercises at other times.
American Military Personnel
asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will detail the numbers of American military personnel currently serving in the United Kingdom.
Approximately 32,000 American military personnel are currently stationed in the United Kingdom.
American National Guards
asked the Secretary of State for Defence if any United States national guards are currently training in the United Kingdom; and if he will make a statement.
There are no members of the United States national guards currently training in the United Kingdom.
Nuclear Red Alert Warnings
asked the Secretary of State for Defence how many nuclear red alert warnings have occurred in the United Kingdom during the last five years.
I refer the hon. Member to the answer which I gave the hon. Member for Stockton, North (Mr. Cook) on 12 April 1984 at column 355.
Enriched Uranium (Capenhurst)
asked the Secretary of State for Defence for what market highly enriched uranium from the Capenhurst plant is being produced.
I shall reply shortly.
asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will publish a table giving for both the
|1 April 1979||1 April 1980||1 April 1981||1 April 1982||1 April 1983||1 April 1984||1 April 1985|
|(a) Civilians directly under control of Chief Executive Dockyards||12,772||12,459||12,068||12,173||12,812||13,423||13,344|
|(b) Naval staff directly under control of Chief Executive Dockyards||18||18||21||18||12||15||19|
|(c) Other Ministry of Defence civilians working exclusively on Dockyard work†||265||256||278||273||292||309||297|
|(d) Other Ministry of Defence civilians working partly on & Dockyard work and other Ministry of Defence||6,058||5,946||5,735||5,290||5,203||4,981||4,678|
|(e) civilians unconnected with Dockyard work‡|
|(f) Civil servants not employed by Ministry of Defence:|
|Department of Environment—PSA║||326||313||293||237||226||222||213|
|Her Majesty's Treasury—CISCO¶||—||—||—||—||—||143||133|
|(g) Other Naval staff•||6,659||6,948||8,014||7,505||7,887||7,827||7,907|
|(a) Civilians directly under control of Chief Executive Dockyards||5,984||5,846||5,713||5,637||6,064||6,334||6,421|
|(b) Naval staff under control of Chief Executive Dockyard||9||10||7||8||8||10||8|
|(c) Other Ministry of Defence civilians working exclusively on Dockyard work†||183||165||179||176||177||228||226|
|(d) Other Ministry of Defence civilians working partly on & Dockyard work and other Ministry of Defence||2,066||2,034||1,950||1,830||1,842||1,844||1,956|
|(e) civilians unconnected with Dockyard work‡|
|(f) Civil servants not employed by Ministry of Defence:|
|Department of Environment—PSA║||293||263||254||233||229||212||190|
|Her Majesty's Treasury—CISCO¶||—||—||—||—||—||75||73|
|(g) Naval staff•||1,693||1,820||1,846||2,035||1,893||2,079||1,981|
*Includes Plymouth and Torpoint area.
† Figures relate to the Dockyard Maintenance Support Group.
‡ No breakdown available between these categories. Figures include all Navy Department and other Ministry of Defence civilians.
║ Includes personnel located outside the naval base but providing support to the base and service elsewhere.
¶ Figures for earlier years not available. Figures shown include part time Industrial staff.
• Includes RN/RM/QARNNS/WRNS Officers and Ratings.
Foreign And Commonwealth Affairs
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when he last raised the issue of Afghanistan with the Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics; and if he will make a statement.
We have taken every appropriate opportunity to make clear to the Soviet Government our condemnation of their continued military occupation of Afghanistan and to express our firm support for the United Nations secretary-general's efforts to secure a settlement on the lines of successive United Nations resolutions.
Devonport and Rosyth naval complexes, separately for the years 1979 to 1985 (a) civilians directly under the control of the chief executive, royal dockyards, (b) naval staff directly under the control of the chief executive, royal dockyards, (c) other Ministry of Defence civilians working exclusively on dockyard work, analysed by organisation, (d) other Ministry of Defence civilians working partly on dockyard work, (e) other Ministry of Defence civilians unconnected with dockyard work, (f) civil servants not employed by the Ministry of Defence, analysed by organisation within department and (g) other naval staff.
The number of personnel employed at Devonport and Rosyth naval bases in the years 1979 to 1985 in the categories referred to are as follows:
British Embassies (Soviet Staff)
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many Soviet staff have been dismissed from the British Embassy and residences during the last 15 years; and for what causes.
Dismissals have been rare and there has been only one in recent times, the reason for which was insubordination.
British Embassy, Moscow
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make it his policy to employ United Kingdom nationals on the staff at the British Embassy in Moscow; and if he will make a statement.
In so far as is possible we try and recruit the locally-engaged staff of the Moscow Embassy from within the expatriate community, including of course United Kingdom nationals. But the opportunities for so doing are strictly limited and the costs of employing ancillary staff on United Kingdom terms of service would be prohibitive.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the reply of 20 November, Official Report, column 214, what enrolment procedures are applied to Soviet citizens working in the British Embassy or residing in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
The Embassy has to apply for Soviet staff to the directorate for the servicing of the diplomatic corps—UPDK which is the sole source of Soviet employees for foreign diplomatic missions, foreign businesses and correspondents. The Embassy then interviews prospective employees and engages or rejects them as appropriate All locally-engaged Soviet employees of the Embassy are subject to a contract which conforms to local Soviet labour laws.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the answer of 20 November, Official Report, column 214, if he will provide a breakdown of the categories of employment of the 79 Soviet staff employed in the British Embassy and resident in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
The breakdown of the categories of the 79 Soviet staff employed in Her Majesty's Embassy, Moscow, is as follows:
- Administration Section 50
- Commercial Section 5
- Consular Section 1
- Cultural Section 1
- Defence Section 5
Advancement Of Women
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many copies of the document Nairobi: forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women were produced by his Department; what was the cost; and what steps have been taken to make the document available to the public.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has so far produced over 2,000 copies of this document at a cost of about 73 pence per copy. Copies have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses and have been despatched to the six copyright libraries. With the help of the Women's National Commission, the document is being sent to interested organisations, groups and individuals and those who have expressed a wish to receive it.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will set up a special section in his Department to monitor and support the process of securing equitable representation of women, along the line proposed in paragraph 88 of the Nairobi declaration on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women.
The text of this declaration has only recently been received and is still under consideration. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has had equal opportunities officers, with responsibility for advising on the full scope of equal opportunity matters including sex discrimination, since 1984. There are three such officers—one for the diplomatic wing, one for the Overseas Development Administration and one for staff administered from Hanslope park.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what resources he has allocated to implementing, within his Department, the conclusions of the recent Nairobi conference on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women.
The report containing the forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women has only recently been received and is still under consideration.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he has had any meetings with the Equal Opportunities Commission to discuss implementation of those parts of the conclusions of the Nairobi conference on forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women relevant to his Department; if he has any plans for future meetings on this subject; and if he will make a statement.
The report containing the forward-looking strategies for the advancement of women has only recently been received and is still being considered. There have been no meetings with the Equal Opportunities Commission, and none is at present planned.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list those bodies to which his Department makes appointments, the number of appointments in each case and the number of women appointed in each case.
The information is not readily available, but I will arrange for it to be published in the Official Report as soon as possible.
Peace Organisations (Grants)
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what criteria he uses to decide which organisations claiming to be working for peace should receive grants-in--aid from his Department;(2) which organisations claiming to work for peace have applied to his Department for grants-in-aid; and if he will make a statement.
We take into account whether organisations' purposes are in accordance with our foreign policy objectives. Central among these is the preservation of international peace with freedom and justice. Financial constraints meant that not all requests for support can be met. Organisations receiving grants are listed in the main Supply Estimates.
Blood And Blood Products
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the extent of the counselling service provided to carriers of HTLV III virus, in terms of (a) expenditure, (b) numbers of counsellors and (c) efforts made to advertise the service for each health authority.
I regret that information is not held centrally on the extent of local counselling services.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) when he expects to be able to publish "Low Income Families 1983";(2) further to the reply of 12 November to the hon. Member for Suffolk, South (Mr. Yeo),
Official Report, column 161, what is the reason for the delay in publishing the 1983 family expenditure survey.
Preparation of the new estimates has been delayed by pressures of other work and by the effects of the industrial action at Newcastle central office, which held up the processing of some of the data. However I hope that the estimates will be ready for publication early in the new year.
Disabled Persons (Sequal Organisation)
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what grant his Department is making to the SEQUAL organisation to help provide special equipment and aids for living for disabled people; and if he will increase this grant for 1986–87.
In the last financial year the Department made a grant of £42,000 to SEQUAL which included a special grant of £5,000 for equipment. This compares with £15,500 in 1981–82. The Department will shortly be discussing with the organisation the level of grant for the current financial year.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the number of people who were refused unemployment or supplementary benefit for failing to take up suitable employment in the United Kingdom in 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983 and 1984, respectively.
Under section 20(1)(b) and (c) of the Social Security Act 1975 a person is disqualified for receiving unemployment benefit if, without good cause, he either refuses or neglects to avail himself of suitable employment. The number of disqualifications for these reasons since 1979 is shown in the table.Although supplementary benefit may be withheld if a claimant refuses suitable employment and if the situation is still vacant or open to application, such cases are rare, and no statistics are available about the number of cases in which this happens. However, a voluntary unemployment deduction is applied to a supplementary allowance when a person has been disqualified, or would be disqualified, for receiving unemployment benefit under section 20(1) of the Social Security Act. This may be for other reasons than refusal of employment—for example, because of leaving work voluntarily without just cause—but the available statistics do not permit the precise reason for deductions to be identified. The table therefore shows all cases with such deductions.
|United Kingdom||Refusal of unemployment benefit*||Reduction of supplementary benefit†|
|* The figures for refusal of unemployment benefit are for Great Britain 1979–1980 and for the United Kingdom 1981–1983; the information for Northern Ireland is not available for 1979 and 1980 and is not yet available for 1984.|
|† The supplementary benefit figures have been estimated from information in the annual special inquiry, on the assumption that deductions apply for, on average, four weeks.|
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the number of non-United Kingdom citizens in receipt of supplementary benefit for each of the years 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984 and at the latest date for which figures are available.
Details of the citizenship or nationality of persons claiming supplementary benefit are not generally collected. However, some statistics are available for nationals of the European Community, excepting Eire, and of certain other European countries. Records are available for 1982, 1983, 1984 and up to July 1985 and the total number of awards is shown in the table.
Board And Lodging (Lambeth)
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many people under the age of 26 years are likely to be affected by a limitation on payments for board and lodging in the London borough of Lambeth.
I regret that this information is not available. Under the new regulations only new claims are affected by the limitation on payment at the boarder rate.
Ec (Anti-Poverty Programme)
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish a list of successful applications under the EEC Anti-poverty Programme; how many applications are currently outstanding; and what the closing date will be for the applications for the next financial year.
On the first part of his question I refer the hon. Member to my reply to the hon. Member for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley (Mr. Foulkes) on 13 November at columns 204–8. This programme is not a recurrent one and no further applications will be invited in the next financial year. However 15 applications for projects will be invited in the next financial year. However 15 applications for projects to assist so-called "marginals" groups remain to be considered for United Kingdom Government approval and submitted to the Commission by 31 December 1985 for their selection. The funds available to the Commission will permit them to assist only one or possibly two such projects from the United Kingdom.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what percentage increase in pay would be necessary for a person whose net weekly spending power in work is the same as that when he is unemployed, in order to maintain that parity when welfare benefits are increased by 7 per cent.
The information requested would vary on the composition of the household. The information in the table gives three examples of hypothetical family types, whose net weekly spending power is the same as when unemployed. Assumptions are as per the November 1984 DHSS tax-benefit model tables updated to show also the November 1985 situation.
|Level of gross earnings at which net weekly spending power in work is equal to that when unemployed and receiving supplementary benefit.|
|November 1984||November 1985||Percentage change|
|Single non-householder over 21||31·40||33·45||+6·5|
|Married couple with 2 children (4 & 6)||38·79||38·26||-1·4|
In October 1985 a lower percentage national insurance contribution of 5 per cent. for those earning between £35·50 and £55 was introduced.
Centre and address
London resettlement units/re-establishment centers
|113 Cedars Road, London SW4||1||3||6||1||2||16||—||1||—||30|
West End House
|91 Dean Street, London W1||1||3||7||1||—||20||—||2·5||—||34·5|
|Pound Lane, London NW10||1||3||5||1||1||12||—||1||—||24|
|96 Gt. Guildford Street, London SE1||1||3||5||1||1||12||—||1||—||24|
|2 Birkenhead Street, London WC1||1||2||5||1||1||8||—||1||3||22|
|50 Kingsdown Close, London W10||1||4||5||1||3||12||—||2||—||28|
|12a Ennersdale Road, London SE13||1||5||7||1||4||18||1||2||—||39|
Resettlement unit administered on the department's behalf by local authority
|250 Elm Grove, Brighton||—||1||2||—||—||—||—||—||—||3|
Combined resettlement and day re-establishment centres administered by DHSS
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish a table, for the years 1959, 1979 and the latest for which figures are available, showing net income at average male manual earnings for a single-wage married man with wife and two children aged (a) two and six years and (b) 15 and 17 years, as a percentage of the net income of a single person on the same wage; and if he can show a comparable figure for a typical pre-war year.
The information requested is as follows:
|Net income* of average male manual earnings for single wage man with wife and two children as a percentage of the net income of a single person on the same wage|
|Date||Married couple with 2 children aged (2 & 6) as a percentage of single person||Married couple with 2 children aged (15 & 17) as a percentage of single person|
|* Net income derives from estimates of average gross weekly earnings of male manual workers less tax and national insurance contributions at the non-contracted out insurance rates plus child support/child benefit.|
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the level of staffing for each resettlement unit; and how many staff at each unit have social work, psychiatric or other appropriate qualifications.
The staff complement for each resettlement unit, grade by grade, is set out in the table. Information on qualifications held by members of staff is not available.
Centre and address