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Whether the Northern Ireland Children's Minister has had recent discussions regarding autism; if so, with whom; and whether they intend to devise and implement a Province-wide strategy to deal with early assessment of autism, adequately trained classroom assistants and other special needs. [HL2036]
Lord Rooker: I met with the noble Lord on 3 October and I can report that policy and services for children and adults with autism are currently being examined under the Review of Mental Health and Learning Disability (N.I.), commissioned by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety. The review will recommend how future service delivery should be managed and funded.
In addition, the Department of Education plans shortly to instigate a strategic review of special educational needs provision. The review will include an examination of issues relating to the provision of classroom assistants for all children with statements of special educational need including those with autism and will examine their training needs and effective deployment.
Lord Rooker: It is not possible for the education and library boards to isolate the total resources made available regarding special arrangements for children with dyslexia, as this will depend on the needs of the individual child.
From 200405 to 200708 additional resources of some £1.3 million will have been provided to the education and library boards specifically to address dyslexia related issues including training teachers in identification techniques and teaching strategies, provided in school by suitably qualified teaching staff.
A complementary video, CD-ROM and DVD-ROM on dyslexia have been produced by a joint working group from DE and the Department of Education and Science in Dublin have been distributed to all schools in NI; and
What have been the number of seizures in Northern Ireland for 200405 in comparison to those in 200001 of (a) cocaine powder and wraps; (b) LSD doses and microdots; and (c) amphetamines powder and wraps; and what were
|1 April 2004 to|
13 March 2005
|1 April 2000 to|
31 March 2001
|Drug Seized||Number of seizures||Amount seized||Number of seizures||Amount seized|
|Powder||87||21.3 kgs||27||1.7 kgs|
|Powder||147||79.1 kgs||51||3.9 kgs|
Prosecutions and Conviction Rates for Drug Offences at all courts 2000 to 20031
|Year||Prosecutions||Convictions||Conviction Rate (%)2|
|Year||Number of Persons Proceeded Against||Number of Persons Convicted of at least one offence||Conviction Rate3|
Lord Rooker: The Government are fully committed to tackling the problem of oils fraud in Northern Ireland. In September 2000 Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs began to increase the number of officers in Northern Ireland. Since January 2001 160 customs officers have been deployed to break up criminal gangs behind oils fraud, especially laundering plants, and are actively working under the umbrella of the Organised Crime Task Force with a range of agencies to tackle non-compliance in the fuel sector.
In 2002 the Government announced the introduction of a UK Oils Strategy for tackling the problem. The strategy consists of a range of additional measures to help combat the problem including stronger regulatory regimes to control the sale and distribution of rebated fuel, a central intelligence unit to drive operational activity against fuel smugglers and launderers and the application of new technology.
The latest available data indicate that deliveries of legitimate road fuel to Northern Ireland have increased for the third year in a row after five preceding years of decline which is a clear indicator that the illicit market is shrinking and that the UK Oils Strategy is having a positive effect.
Further to the Written Answer by the Lord Rooker on 10 October (WA 62) on organised crime and fuel processing, whether a targeted strategy has been put in place to deal with the problems identified; and when they will have figures for 2004. [HL1901]
Lord Rooker: The Government's strategy for tackling the problem of oils fraud in Northern Ireland is threefold. First, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs have deployed extra resources in Northern Ireland. Since January 2001, 160 Customs officers are involved in the work to break up criminal gangs and laundering plants.
17 Nov 2005 : Column WA165
Thirdly, the UK Oils Strategy is being fully applied including the implementation of the Registered Dealers in Controlled Oils scheme to control the sale and distribution of rebated fuel, the introduction of a central intelligence unit to drive operational activity against fuel smugglers and launderers and investment in new technology.
The latest available data indicate that deliveries of legitimate road fuel to Northern Ireland have increased three years running which is a clear indicator that the illicit market is shrinking and that the Government's strategy is having a positive effect.
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