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Criminal Records Bureau

Volume 401: debated on Thursday 20 March 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the level of service provided by the Criminal Records Bureau; and how many applications are waiting to be processed and what the average time taken is, broken down by employment sectors. [103310]

Since 11 March 2002 the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) has received 1,537,968 Disclosure applications and has issued 1,341,679 Disclosures. There are less than 44,000 applications currently outside our three week service standard. This figure has reduced from its peak of 109,000 during the summer of 2002 as a direct consequence of the targeted work that is being done to clear the oldest applications from the system. The current average time taken to process a Disclosure application stands at five weeks.For the last four months the CRB has issued on average more Disclosures each week than it has received applications for, thereby reducing the number of outstanding cases. The CRB is issuing around 42,000 Disclosures per week, which is over double the weekly output issued by the police under the previous arrangements. There are no IT Procedures at present to extract information from the CRB database by employment sector. It is expected that this functionality will become available in subsequent system releases. No distinction is made in relation to the profession of an applicant as all applications are subject to the same level of service.