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Non-Emergency Crime Line

Volume 447: debated on Monday 5 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the cost will be to callers of using the new 101 non-emergency crime line. (69368)

The cost of calls to the new 101 single non-emergency number has been set at 10p per call following consultation with a wide group of stakeholders and research with the public. The research showed that a small fixed charge would not put people off calling the service but would reduce the likelihood of the service being abused. The Government, police and local authorities will not profit in any way from the 10p fixed charge for calls to the single non-emergency number. The charge will be retained by telecom providers to offset the substantial cost of carrying calls.

This fixed rate charge compares favourably with existing police and local authority non-emergency numbers many of which are charged at 0845 call rates which can cost as much as 10p per minute or more. Calls to 101 will be 10p per call regardless of length which means that callers are protected against additional cost if their call is longer and more complex.

The tariff will be reviewed once the service is in operation and has been evaluated with the aim of making it free to call the number in the future.