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19 Sept 2002 : Column 45W—continued

Entertainment Costs

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the cost was of the Department's 2001 staff Christmas Party; and how many people attended. [61668]

Beverley Hughes: Public funds are not normally used to pay for entertainment of civil servants in the Department. Staff Christmas parties in 2001 funded by staff themselves have not been included in this answer. We have identified a small number of events, held in December 2001, to recognise the contribution of staff and extend hospitality to non-civil servants who contributed to the delivery of the Department's objectives during the course of the year, which were part funded by the Department and its operational agencies. The total cost of these was £7,645 attended by 1163 people. We have not trawled the 136 prisons or all Immigration and Nationality Directorate units and to do so could only be done at a disproportionate cost.

19 Sept 2002 : Column 46W

Court Visits

Mr. Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many courts he has visited since 7 June 2001. [64228]

Mr. Denham: My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary has not visited any courts during this period. However, my right hon. Friend the Member for Manchester, Withington (Mr. Bradley)—then Minister with responsibility for criminal justice policy—visited twelve criminal courts during the corresponding period, and I visited a Magistrates Court.


Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of (a) paper and (b) other goods purchased by his Department was recycled paper in each year since 1997; what the annual total cost of these purchases was; what plans there are to increase these proportions; and if he will make a statement. [65772]


Beverley Hughes: (a) The proportion of recycled paper purchased by the Department from the framework paper contract for 2000–01 and 2001–02 is set out in the table. Figures for earlier years are not readily available and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

YearNumber of reams of recycled paperCost of Recycled paperTotal number of reams purchasedTotal cost of paper purchasedPercentage of recycled paper purchased

19 Sept 2002 : Column 47W

The Home Office has recently made the use of recycled paper for photocopiers, printers and facsimile equipment compulsory. This mandate applies to the core Home Office and should result in around 40 per cent. of all paper purchased by the Department as a whole being recycled. This percentage may increase shortly: the Prison Service has issued guidance to their procurement staff encouraging them to use recycled paper and the United Kingdom Passport Agency and the Forensic Science Service are at present considering whether to make its use compulsory.

(b) Figures are not available for the proportion of other goods purchased by the Home Office that were derived from recycled paper.

Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of waste produced in his Department was (a) recycled, (b) composted and (c) re-used, broken down into (i) paper, (ii) plastics, (iii) aluminium cans and (iv) other in each year since 1997; what plans there are to increase these proportions; and if he will make a statement. [65701]

Beverley Hughes: The information requested is not recorded centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost. However, records for the Department's Central London headquarters estate show that 20 per cent. of the office waste was recycled in 2000–01 and 25 per cent. was recycled in 2001–02.

Waste minimisation schemes are being introduced at all key sites on the Department's non-prison estate, while waste audits have been conducted at 72 sites on the prison estate and waste management units are operational at 14 prisons and developmental work is underway at a further 18 sites.

We are considering how to increase the range and amount of waste sent for recycling.

Oral Questions

Mr. Simon Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many oral questions he has transferred to other departments in each of the last 18 months. [65510]

Beverley Hughes: The information requested is shown in the table.

Date of oral PQ sessionNumber of PQs transferred
2 July 20014
19 November 20011
4 February 20021
11 March 20021

The reason that there were four transfers in July 2001 is that this closely followed the movement of policy areas between Departments after the General Election. Questions are only transferred out of the Department when it is more appropriate for another Department to respond and when that Department has agreed to accept the question.

19 Sept 2002 : Column 48W

Violent Crime

Mr. Coleman: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the rate of violent crime was in each Government office region at the latest date for which figures are available. [68899]

Mr. Denham: The table gives figures for rates of violent crime from the British Crime Survey (BCS), for the English regions and Wales based on BCS interviews in the financial year 2001–02. The BCS figures for violence per 10,000 adults relate to violence (wounding, common assault, robbery and snatch theft) experienced by the members of the public sampled in the survey.

The BCS violence estimate for the number of violent incidents increased by two per cent. compared to 2000, but this is not statistically significant. Comparison of results reported to the BCS in 2001–02 with those for earlier years show a 17 per cent. decline in BCS violence since 1999, a 22 per cent. decline since 1997 and a 33 per cent. decline since 1995, all of these decreases being statistically significant.

The following figures have been extracted from Table 6.06 of the Home Office Statistical Bulletin "Crime in England and Wales 2001–02", which is available in the library. A fuller explanation of the differences between the collection of recorded crime and BCS figures is given in Chapter 2 of this publication.

The BCS and police recorded crime figures for violence are not directly comparable. Numbers of police recorded violent crimes per 10,000 population relate to all the recordable offences in the violence against the person, sexual offences and robbery offence groups. There is also a less than complete correlation between the recorded crime and BCS figures owing to the different methods of collection, methodology and coverage (for example, the BCS only relates to victims over the age of 16, and residents), with different rates of reporting of crimes to the police also being a factor.

Violent crime recorded by the British Crime Survey by region 2001–02Rates per 10,000 adults 1 .
RegionTotal BCS violence per 10,000 adults 1 .
North East Region386
North West Region736
Yorkshire and the Humber Region866
East Midlands Region621
West Midlands Region579
East of England Region589
London Region800
South East Region895
South West Region493
England and Wales679
England and Wales
(excluding London Region)657

1 . BCS data relates to those of age 16 of over, i.e. about 80 per cent. of the population. (Recorded violent crime figures relate to the whole population).

19 Sept 2002 : Column 49W

Capital Modernisation Grant

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will provide a breakdown by spending heading of the capital modernisation grant for 2001–02. [68792]

Beverley Hughes [holding answer 11 July 2002]: The department spent the following amounts on approved capital modernisation projects in 2001–02:

Project:Expenditure £'000
Round 1
Crime Reduction Closed Circuit Television69,127
IT Integration in criminal justice system (CJS) with Lord Chancellor's Department and the Crown Proscution Service: Oasys and P.S. Lids System476
DNA database (with Round 2)17,000
Active Communities7,604
VISOR—Sex and Violent Offenders Database333
Round 2
Prison PressuresNil *
National Strategy on Police Information System12,188
Government Technical Assistance Centre4,840
Video recording police interviews1,706
Video-links: Modernising the Court Process2,422
Post-release support hostel for prisoners after drug treatmentNil *
Electronic chipping of goods1,539
Visor—Sex and Violent Offenders Database333
Round 3
Firearms Forensic DatabaseNil *
Joined Up Justice—Integrated CJS for Warwickshire2,700
Security for small retailers2,354
Detecting Concealed People935
Electronic chipping of goods700

* Deferred to 2002–03.

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