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Beverley Hughes [holding answer 5 March 2002]: Statistical bulletins concerning the long term prison population projections are issued every May; the last one was published on 23 May 2001. Short term projections are issued every May and November.
A copy of the most recent long term projection is kept in the Library. Details of the current short term projection are included in the monthly "Prison Population Brief", which is available on the Home Office website at the following address: http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/ prisons1.html
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 5 March 2002]: Intermittent custody (part time custody) is being worked up as part of the package of sentencing reforms currently being considered by the Government in response to the "Making Punishments Work" report written by John Halliday. My intention is to publish a White Paper later this year.
Mrs. Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) independent custody visitors' groups and (b) lay observers' panels published their annual reports in the last year; and if he will make a statement. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 5 March 2002]: Information about the number of independent (police) custody groups publishing annual reports in the last year is not kept centrally. However, each police authority's annual report should contain a reference to independent custody visiting within the relevant area.
Mrs. Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to bring boards of visitors, lay observers and independent custody visitors under a single umbrella organisation; and if he will make a statement. 
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Angela Eagle [holding answer 5 March 2002]: The Experience Corps is an independent company. Its appointments are subject to the memorandum and articles of association of the company. The current list of directors is listed on its website or is available from the company.
Angela Eagle [holding answer 5 March 2002]: The Experience Corps company has been allocated a total of £19.9 million pounds for the period until 31 March 2004 to deliver the initiative. The first instalment of grant-in-aid was paid in September 2001. By 31 December 2001, the Home Office had paid a total of £2.8 million in grant-in-aid to the Experience Corps company.
Angela Eagle: The Experience Corps company was established in March 2001 and signed a financial agreement with the Home Office in September 2001. It is organising separate launches in each of the nine government regions of England; the first took place in November 2001 and they will be completed by April 2002. It has the objective of 250,000 volunteers over the lifetime of the initiative. We will receive a report on the first six months' progress by the summer.
Mr. Ben Chapman: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what guidance he gives police authorities on investigating allegations of date rape involving use of gammahydroxybutyrate. 
Mr. Denham: Guidance on good practice in rape investigation is available to the police from the National Crime Faculty, who are able where necessary to draw on expertise elsewhere in the service on the investigation of cases where rape may have been facilitated by the administration of drugs. In addition, Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary will shortly be publishing the report of a thematic inspection of rape investigation. The Government have accepted in principle that gammahydroxybutyrate (GHB) should be controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971, and the Home Office published on 4 March 2002 a consultation letter on this proposal.
Mr. Woodward: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what monitoring of compliance with the Human Rights Act 1998 in young offenders institutions his Department has undertaken; and what resources have been made available for this. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 6 March 2002]: All prison service policies have been audited for compliance with the Human Rights Act 1998 and all prison service activities, both in relation to prisoners and staff, have to comply with the Act. The Prison Service monitors young offender institutions and other establishments by means of some 60 performance standards. Independent Boards of Visitors are present in all establishments, whose
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members have a right to visit all parts of the establishment at any time of day or night. Her Majesty's Inspector of Prisons inspects establishments on a regular cycle and also makes unannounced visits. Prisoners and young offenders may make complaints to the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman. An operational area manager at Assistant Director level was appointed on 1 April 2001, specifically to oversee the juvenile estate. A unit in Prison Service headquarters disseminates information about the Human Rights Act and monitors challenges under the Act. All these activities take account of human rights among other matters but the costs cannot be separately identified.
Mr. Woodward: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what monitoring of compliance with the Human Rights Act 1998 in asylum accommodation centres his Department has undertaken; and what resources have been made available for this. 
Angela Eagle [holding answer 6 March 2002]: Trial accommodation centres have not yet been established. However, the process of establishing them will include an assessment of all the relevant factors including compatibility with the Human Rights Act.
Mr. Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the immigration status of a person who is given permanent leave to remain in the UK because they are marrying a British citizen who divorces that person a number of years later; and if such a person then has a right to a claim on public funds. 
Angela Eagle [holding answer 7 March 2002]: A person granted indefinite leave to remain on the basis of their marriage to a British Citizen does not forfeit that status if they later divorce. They will retain their settled status and their eligibility for public funds.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the number of people whose immigration status is irregular in terms of (a) visitors who have overstayed, (b) students who have overstayed, (c) asylum seekers who have exhausted their appeal rights and (d) illegal entrants who have made no attempt to regularise their stay; what information he has on the average length of stay of such people; and what his policy is for regularising their situation. 
Angela Eagle: No estimates have been made of the number of persons in the categories requested and information on the average length of stay of such persons is not available. No Government have ever been able to give reliable estimates of this nature. However, the Home Office has commissioned a study which will consider methods of estimating the size and characteristics of the illegal population.
It remains our policy that overstayers and illegal entrants are liable to removal from the United Kingdom. The Immigration Service seeks to remove from the United Kingdom all persons who no longer have any basis of stay.
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Mr. Denham: Recorded crime data are not collected by parliamentary constituency. Information on numbers of certain offences, including violent crime, has been collected centrally at police Basic Command Unit (BCU), and Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership level, since 1 April 1999. The Home Office statistical bulletin "Recorded Crime England and Wales, 12 months to March 2001", published on 19 July 2001, includes details of recorded crimes in these areas.
The British Crime Survey has shown that, in England and Wales as a whole, victimisation for the violent crime in the survey which is comparable to recorded crime decreased by 19 per cent. between the 1999 and 2000 calendar years, whereas comparable violent crime recorded by the police increased by 9 per cent. Violent crime recorded by the police may therefore not necessarily be a reflection of real changes in the level of victimisation.
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