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Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many immigration detainees were held in prison establishments (a) in January 2000, (b) in January 1997 and (c) on the last date for which figures are available; what entitlements detainees have while held in prison; and if he will make a statement. 
Mrs. Roche: We differentiate between those Prison Service establishments where immigration detainees have separate facilities from the rest of the establishment, where it is possible to provide a regime that reflects more closely that which operates inside an Immigration Detention Centre, and mainstream prisons where detainees are afforded the same conditions as remand prisoners. Separate facilities have been provided at Her Majesty's Prison Rochester, Her Majesty's Prison Haslar for some time and since July 2000 at Her Majesty's Prison Lindholme.
Figures relating to the number of immigration detainees in prisons in January 1997 are not available in the same detail as those for 2000. At that time details were recorded of the number of persons detained in prisons who had sought asylum at some stage. I have included these in the table, marked with an asterix.
|January 1997||January 2000||December 2000|
The higher use of prisons in December 2000 is a reflection of the temporary use of 500 Prison Service places, for about 12 months, to support the removals programme.
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Within a local prison immigration detainees are entitled to the same rights and privileges, and are managed in the same manner, as unconvicted prisoners. Detainees have access to books, newspapers, writing materials and other means of occupation of their choice and at their own expense. They are permitted to wear their own clothing. They are entitled to an unlimited number of visits, within the capacity of the establishment, and there is no restriction on the number of letters they may receive or send. They have access to legal and consular representatives and are afforded full use of Prison Service medical services. The Immigration Service ensures that Immigration Officers regularly visit prisons to provide information to detainees about the progress of their case.
Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on how many occasions the NASS has been notified, following an inspection by a local environmental health officer, that NASS-contracted accommodation is of an unacceptable standard; if he will provide details in respect of each case of notification; and if he will make a statement. 
Mrs. Roche: We have received one formal notice that a property is not in compliance with the local authority regulations. This is a preliminary notification received from Liverpool city council of an intention to issue an enforcement notice regarding overcrowding.
The National Asylum Support Service has also been made aware of 17 cases contained in a report received from Manchester city council where the local authority was proposing to issue notices should remedial work not be carried out by the landlord.
Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many of the units of accommodation inspected directly by the NASS were found to be (a) of an acceptable standard and (b) of an unacceptable standard; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what enforcement action the NASS has taken to ensure that its contractors comply with statutory and contractual standards of accommodation and management; and if he will make a statement. 
Mrs. Roche: The National Asylum Support Service (NASS) has a dedicated team of contract managers to ensure that all providers of accommodation meet their statutory and contractual obligations. A Performance Monitoring Inspections team, which monitors housing management procedures, supplements the work of these officials. NASS has also engaged the services of Property
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Advisers to the Civil Estate (PACE) to provide professional property advice and support. Where necessary NASS commissions surveys and inspections from third-party building surveyors.
Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many of the units of accommodation procured by the NASS have been inspected since 1 April 2000 by (a) the NASS performance monitoring inspection teams, (b) the Property Advisers to the Civil Estate and (c) local environmental health officers; and if he will make a statement. 
(b) As of 26 January 2001, 3,308 properties have been inspected by the Property Advisers to the Civil Estate (PACE) which represent 100 per cent. of the private sector contracts that were on the database on 1 October 2000 and 5 per cent. of the public sector provided property.
(c) We are unable to give information on how many properties have been inspected by the local authority environmental health officers since their findings are sent to the landlords and not the National Asylum Support Service.
Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many complaints have been received by the NASS about the standards of accommodation, management or support provided by the NASS accommodation providers; if he will provide details of each complaint; and if he will make a statement. 
Mrs. Roche: The Performance Monitoring Inspections (PMI) Team of the National Asylum Support Service (NASS) has received 196 complaints about standards of accommodation, housing management or support services. Information on the details of individual complaints could be provided only at disproportionate cost but typical complaints include: quantity/quality/type of food, problems with heating/hot water systems, general condition of accommodation or furnishings and problems accessing local health/education services. NASS has worked with refugee organisations to develop a referral process and form to assist supported persons with raising accommodation related issues with NASS.
Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what criteria the Property Advisers to the Civil Estate are asked to use when inspecting the standards of accommodation procured by the NASS; if they are asked to take into account the standard of accommodation in relation to the needs of the occupants; and if he will make a statement. 
Mrs. Roche: The criteria used is that contained in the Contract Specification and the requirement of the provider to comply with all Acts of Parliament and regulations made by local authorities. The standard applied is the higher of the two.
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Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the estimated net changes in police recruitment are in each force and in total in (a) the current year and (b) the next two years based on information given by forces in bids for the Crime Fighting Fund and funding allocations made under the fund; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Charles Clarke: In their bids for a share of the recruitment scheme of the Crime Fighting Fund (CFF), made in January 2000, forces provided information on their projected recruitment in each of the years 2000-01 to 2002-03.
Net changes to that previously planned recruitment by forces will result from the allocation of extra recruits from the CFF. The net change is expected to total 9,000 recruits over the three years 2000-01 to 2002-03. The table shows the current force allocations from the CFF for each year.
Some forces have asked to defer part of their CFF allocation into the next financial year and other forces have asked to bring forward CFF recruitment from next financial year into this year. In total, forces have been given authority for a net deferral of up to 250 CFF recruits from 2000-01 to 2001-02.
The current allocations for each force vary, however, with changes to the forces' recruitment plans. The latest estimates, shown in the table, include an expected net deferral of 210 CFF recruits from 2000-01 to 2001-02.
|CFF Allocation 2000-01||CFF Allocation 2001-02||CFF Allocation 2002-03|
|Avon and Somerset||67||51||77|
|City of London||0||23||15|
|Devon and Cornwall||77||79||79|
Allocations may differ from previously published figures, as they include agreed acceleration or deferral of CFF recruits between 2000-01 and 2001-02. In the case of the Metropolitan police agreement has been given to defer up to 155 CFF recruits from 2000-01 into 2001-02, but the force now expects to defer only 115.
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