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Mr. Collins: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many (a) part-time and (b) full-time coroners have been met by members of the review team examining the future of the coroner system as part of their work; and if he will make a statement; 
(3) when he intends to publish the findings of the review of the coroner system; and if he will make a statement. 
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him to write to the hon. Member direct about the visits which the review team has made and the coroners they have met.
Mr. Luce has recently assessed that the work involved in conducting the review will require a little more time than originally agreed, but I now expect to receive the findings by April 2003 and to publish them shortly thereafter.
Mr. Peter Duncan: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions he has had with the Scottish Executive in respect of providing for the education of the children of asylum seekers in Scotland. 
Mr. Gerrard: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department which detention facilities in which asylum seekers are detained are defined as (a) short-term and (b) long-term; and what is the average length of time he estimates asylum seekers will be held in (i) short-term and (ii) long-term detention 
Beverley Hughes: There are short-term holding facilities at Manchester, Dover, Cheriton, Felixstowe and Harwich. Detainees are held at these centres for no longer than five days, or no longer than seven days in cases where removal directions have been set.
The immigration removal centres at Campsfield House, Harmondsworth, Tinsley House, Dungavel House, Dover, Haslar, Lindholme and Yarl's Wood (which is closed at present) may be used to hold detainees for whatever period is necessary for the purpose for which detention was authorised. This period will vary from case to case.
In addition, Oakington Reception Centre is used to detain persons whose asylum claim is assessed to be straightforward and capable of being decided quickly. The fast-track asylum process at Oakington typically takes between seven to 10 days.
Beverley Hughes: Our policy regarding the use of detention was set out in the 1998 White Paper "Fairer, Faster, FirmerA Modern Approach to Immigration and Asylum" and the recent White Paper "Secure Borders, Safe Haven".
Detention will usually be appropriate to effect removal; initially to establish a person's identity or basis of claim; or where there is reasonable belief that a person will fail to comply with the conditions attached to the grant of temporary admission or release. In addition, persons whose asylum claims appear straightforward and capable of being decided quickly may be detained as part of the fast-track asylum process at Oakington Reception Centre.
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Beverley Hughes: The transfer of detainees between removal centres, for whatever reason, is kept to a minimum. However, a transfer may occur for reasons of security; for health care reasons, as not all centres have in-patient facilities; and, on occasion, for domestic or compassionate reasons, or to enable a detainee to be more easily visited by a representative. Transfers may also be arranged for operational reasons as a stage towards removal from the United Kingdom, or to create vacancies in a particular centre.
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Mr. Rooney: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether local grant claims for supporting adult and family asylum seekers for the period 1 April 1999 to 5 December 1999 have been met. 
Mr. Blunkett: I have laid before Parliament today a Special Grant Report which sets out the arrangements for reimbursing local authorities in England for amounts outstanding in respect of claims for supporting asylum-seeking adults and families for the period 1 April 1999 to 5 December 1999.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many asylum seekers were accepted as refugees from (a) the Czech Republic, (b) Slovakia, (c) Bulgaria and (d) Romania in 2001. 
|Total initial decisions made||885||85||145||2,125|
|Recognised as a refugee and granted asylum||||(13)||(13)||(13)|
|Not recognised as a refugee but granted exceptional leave||5||(13)||15||70|
|Refused asylum and exceptional leave||850||80||130||2,055|
(12) The information relates to initial decisions made in 2001, which in some cases will relate to applications received in previous years. Figures have been rounded to the nearest five and are provisional.
(13) Equals one or two
Information on initial decisions is published quarterly. The next publication will cover the period up to June 2002, and will be available from 30 August 2002 on the Home Office Research Development and Statistics Directorate website at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/ immigration1.html
Ms Abbott: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what criteria the National Asylum Support Service uses to assess the (a) existence and (b) suitability of accommodation for those leaving induction centres; 
Beverley Hughes: The first induction centre opened in Dover on 21 January 2002. The National Asylum Support Service (NASS) does not keep separate figures showing the destination of those passing through the induction centres.
Applications for support from those in the induction centre are considered in the same way as any other. Only asylum seekers who request that accommodation be provided as part of an application for support are liable to be dispersed. Each application is considered on its individual merits. It is open to the asylum seeker to put forward reasons why they should either not be dispersed or should be sent to a particular area. Generally speaking NASS does not provide accommodation in London. Normally the only exceptions are where the asylum seeker has been accepted for treatment by the Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture or where the asylum seeker is transferring to the NASS system of support and has school age children who have been at school for over one year.
Mr. Blunkett: I have laid before Parliament today a Special Grant Report which sets out the arrangements for reimbursing local authorities in England for the costs of supporting unaccompanied asylum-seeking children as a result of their duties under the Children Act 1989.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what (a) the cost is of building accommodation centres at each of the three sites identified, (b) the cost is of providing facilities at those centres as set out in Clause 25 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Bill and (c) use is planned for the accommodation centres at the end of the experimental period if the evaluation of them deems them unsuitable. 
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Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has collated on the use of accommodation centres for asylum seekers in other EU countries on (a) decision times, (b) removal rates and (c) the welfare of applicants. 
Beverley Hughes: The Home Office has looked at the use of accommodation centres for asylum seekers during visits to Belgium, Denmark and Sweden. As far as we are aware, none of these countries has systematically evaluated the use of accommodation centres for asylum seekers or carried out any comparison of the impact of accommodation centres on decision times and removal rates. There has been some analysis of the impact of accommodation centres on the welfare of applicants. Published sources include: Dutch Refugee Council (1997) "Asylum seekersdon't let them just sit and wait: six months in a centre is the limit"; Danish Red Cross leaflet 2001 "Danish Red Cross and the Asylum Work"; Willigen, L. van and Mooren, G.T.M. (et al) (1993) "Study on the difficulties in the reception and care of children of refugees and asylum seekers in the Netherlands", in Willigen, L. van (ed) "Health Hazards of Organised Violence in Children", Pharos Foundation for Refugee Health Care, London.
In January 2002, the Home Office commissioned research to examine the reception policies and practice of four European countries (Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany). This includes an analysis of the impact of accommodation centres on: (1) application rates; (2) the speed of the determination process; (3) the facilitation of return and removals; and (4) integration.
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