Nurses: Project 2000
Earl Russell asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they will consider allowing nurses on Project 2000, who are ineligible for housing benefit and family benefit, to benefit from the New Deal.[HL2050]
The Minister of State, Department for Education and Employment (Baroness Blackstone): Both the New Deal for 18-24 year-olds and the New Deal for people aged 25 and over offer opportunities for people in receipt of Jobseeker's Allowance to study full-time for a maximum of 12 months. Project 2000 is a three-year full-time nursing course and participants receive a bursary award. They receive a higher rate of maintenance grant than other students in higher education which is not means tested and which this Government have increased this year. People joining Project 2000 will therefore become full-time students for the duration of their course, in receipt of the appropriate award, and will neither need nor be eligible for support from the New Deal.
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Lord Judd asked Her Majesty's Government:
Which states have signed and which states have now fully ratified or accepted the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction; and where the United Kingdom now stands on the full implementation of the convention.[HL1967]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean): One hundred and twenty-six states have signed the Convention and
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11 have ratified it. We have arranged for the list of signatories to be placed in the Library of both Houses. Those that have ratified are Canada, Ireland, Mauritius, the Holy See, Turkmenistan, San Marino, Switzerland, Niue, Hungary, Belize and Trindad and Tobago. We intend to ratify the Convention as soon as the parliamentary schedule allows for the passage of the legislation necessary for us to implement the convention in full. A ban on exports did not require legislation and is already in place. We are in the process of destroying almost all our stocks, some 1 million weapons, and the work is scheduled for completion by 1 January 2000, well before the deadline in the Ottawa Convention (four years after its entry into force). As allowed for under the convention we shall retain around 4,000 landmines in order to be able to carry out training in demining.