|Previous Section||Back to Table of Contents||Lords Hansard Home Page|
The Minister of State, Home Office (Lord Falconer of Thoroton): This Government are already taking a number of steps to address the needs and risks associated with young people who sexually abuse. The Home Office-sponsored Youth Justice Board issued in November effective practice guidance to youth offending teams to help to ensure that current work with young sexual abusers is as effective as possible. We are also funding a study into the characteristics of children and young people who sexually abuse. This is due to report in December 2005. In addition, we have established a two-year pilot developing assessment tools and programmes in three juvenile establishments for 15 to 21 year olds; and the Youth Justice Board is currently mapping services for young sexual abusers nationwide in conjunction with the National Organisation for the Treatment of Abusers and the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. This is due to report in the autumn.
The Home Office and Youth Justice Board have also set up an interdepartmental working group with the Department of Health and the Department for Education and Skills to look at the whole issue of young people who sexually abuse. We will consider the further timetable when this has completed its work and in the light of what resources will be required. Joan
Lord Falconer of Thoroton: Our current arrangement for warning the public about major emergencies involves using the broadcasters and their full range of services. This includes TV (with sign language or subtitles as necessary), radio including minority language broadcasts, Teletext, Ceefax and through websites. Such arrangements are appropriate to existing and anticipated threat levels.
These major emergency information procedures are separate from the National Attack Warning System (which my right honourable friend Lord Macdonald of Tradeston described on 12 March). This system is maintained by the Government for use in general war to alert the public. However, plans also provide for a considerable amount of public education material to be produced in the period of tension which would precede the need to invoke use of the system. This would ensure that no members of the public were disadvantaged by disability or language needs. John B
The Minister for Trade (Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean): We will seek new UN Security Council resolutions to affirm Iraq's integrity to ensure a rapid delivery of humanitarian relief and endorse an appropriate post-conflict administration for Iraq.
Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean: In the days immediately following the cessation of military activity, a US-led military coalition will provide security. The United States Office of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance (ORHA), headed by General Jay Garner (Rtd), will co-ordinate civil relief and humanitarian asistance. UK personnel will be attached to ORHA.
We aim to ensure UN endorsement, of and involvement in, post-Saddam administration of Iraq in order to secure the widest possible international support to rebuild Iraq as soon as possible. We are also discussing with partners the possibility of a UN Special Representative for Iraq.
A UN Security Council Resolution allowing the current Oil for Food programme to continue has now been unanimously passed. We will also seek new UN resolutions to affirm Iraq's territorial integrity, ensure rapid delivery of humanitarian relief and endorse an appropriate post-conflict administration for Iraq. We want to see Iraqis running their own affairs as soon as possible. bjc
Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean: The European Union is continuing to make progress on the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP). The detailed arrangements inplementing the Berlin plus agreement for the EU to make use of NATO assets and capabilities were recently agreed. This agreement has enabled the EU to launch the first military ESDP operation in Macedonia. Differences over Iraq have not prevented, and need not prevent, European nations working constructively together to achieve shared objectives in the EU's Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and ESDP.
Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean: The military action against Saddam Hussein's regime has seen various levels of support by a broad coalition of over 40 countries. Some 20 countries are providing, or have offered, military forces to the coalition and supporting activity. Some other nations are providing logistical support. It is for the individual countries concerned to decide if they wish to declare publicly the nature of their involvement. The UK's overall objective for the military campaign is to create the conditions in which Iraq disarms in accordance with its obligations under UNSCRs and remains so disarmed in the long-term. bjc
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Whitty): The White Paper Your Region, Your Choice [Cm 5511] sets out the functions that elected regional assemblies will have in chapter 4. The policy areas of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs are addressed in paragraphs 4.494.53. Rural policy
4.49 The Government's aim is to sustain and enhance the distinctive environment, economy and social fabric of the English countryside for the benefit of everyone. In order to ensure this aim is met, all major policies are assessed for their rural impact. It will be important to ensure that elected regional assemblies "rural proof" their activities fully to take the rural dimension into account.
The Government recently concluded from the Flood and Coastal Defence Funding Review that the responsibility for flood and coastal defence funding should not be passed to the future elected regional assemblies. But the Government announced that the new approach to flood and coastal defence funding will be subject to review after three years of operation, taking account of the Government's regional agenda among other factors.
|Back to Table of Contents||Lords Hansard Home Page|