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Written Answers to Questions

Friday 5 September 2014

House of Commons Commission

Carol Mills

Mr Simon Burns: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, what the status is of the letter that Mr Speaker sent to the Prime Minister recommending Ms Mills' appointment as the new Clerk of the House and Chief Executive; [207884]

(2) whether the letter that Mr Speaker sent to the Prime Minister recommending Ms Mills' appointment as the next Clerk of the House and Chief Executive will be recalled. [207885]

John Thurso: Ms Mills' name has not yet been submitted as Under Clerk of the Parliaments (Clerk of the House of Commons and Chief Executive) to Her Majesty the Queen for approval. Mr Speaker has written to the Prime Minister asking that its submission be delayed until a clear way forward on this issue has been agreed.

Clerk of the House

Mr Simon Burns: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, if the Commission with make available to the right hon. Member for Chelmsford all the records of all the discussions of the panel considering the appointment of the new Clerk of the House and Chief Executive. [207883]

John Thurso: Records relating to the appointment of the new Clerk of the House and Chief Executive constitute the personal data of the applicants. It is not the Commission's practice to disclose confidential personal information of this nature.

Mr Simon Burns: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, pursuant to the answer of 18 June 2014, Official Report, columns 607-8W, on Clerk of the House, what percentage of the first year’s salary of any candidate recommended for appointment Saxton Bampfylde is contracted to receive. [207887]

John Thurso: Saxton Bampfylde was contracted for a flat fee of £18,000 to provide support for the recruitment of the next Clerk of the House and Chief Executive. There is no salary related element.

Palace of Westminster

Angus Robertson: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, what the total expenditure on essential maintenance of the Palace of Westminster was in (a) 2009-10 and (b) 2010-11; what

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the Commons contribution was in each such year; and what estimate he has made of the likely increase in such costs in the next two financial years. [207731]

John Thurso: The total expenditure on essential maintenance of the Palace of Westminster and the Commons contribution was as follows:

2009-10: £8.9 million, Commons share: £5.5 million

2010-11: £9.6 million, Commons share: £6.0 million.

Essential maintenance has been interpreted to include planned and reactive day-to-day maintenance plus resource project works in excess of £25,000. It excludes staff costs and capital projects such as cast iron roofs repairs and the Medium Term Mechanical and Electrical project.

While the Medium Term Financial Plan, which covers the next two financial years has not yet been agreed, essential maintenance is expected to be in line with previous years subject to inflation.

Cabinet Office

Big Lottery Fund

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office if he will take steps to revise the criteria for awarding grants to ensure that organisations less than two years old cannot apply for grants from the Big Lottery Fund. [207304]

Mr Newmark: The Big Lottery Fund is independent of government in its decision-making on funding and grant awards.

Big Society Network

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) which Minister authorised the decision to refer the bids from the Big Lottery Fund and the Cabinet Office to the Big Society Network and the Society Network Foundation back to the Social Investment Business; [207293]

(2) which grade of officials in his Department made the decision to refer the bids for grants from the Big Lottery Fund and the Cabinet Office to the Big Society Network and the Society Network Foundation back to the Social Investment Business; [207294]

(3) which officials in his Department made the decision to refer the bids for grants from the Big Lottery Fund to the Big Society Network and the Society Network Foundation back to the Social Investment Business; [207295]

(4) which official in his Department authorised the Cabinet Office's payment to the Society Network Foundation for the Get In project in October 2012; [207323]

(5) which Minister authorised the Cabinet Office's payment to the Society Network Foundation for the Get In project in October 2012. [207324]

Mr Newmark: Decisions taken regarding the Cabinet Office’s Social Action Fund grant to Society Network Foundation, made through the Social Investment Business, were made via the designated decision-making mechanism for this programme—the Minister for Civil Society, supported by the programme’s Advisory Panel.

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The Big Lottery Fund is independent from Government in its decision-making on specific funding and grant awards, and no Ministers or Cabinet Office officials had any involvement in any decisions taken by them regarding the grants made to the Society Network Foundation or Big Society Network.

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) whether his Department has approached (a) NESTA and (b) Big Lottery to request them to fund the Big Society Network or the Social Network Foundation; [207320]

(2) how many discussions (a) Ministers and (b) officials in his Department had with the Big Lottery fund prior to that organisation approaching the Big Society Network to apply for a grant; [207303]

(3) what recent discussions his Department has had with NESTA on funding the Big Society Network. [207321]

Mr Newmark: The Cabinet Office has not had any discussions with NESTA regarding funding for the Big Society Network, and did not approach NESTA or Big Lottery Fund and ask them to fund the Big Society Network.

No discussions with Big Lottery Fund concerning the Society Network Foundation or Big Society Network were held by either Cabinet Office Ministers or Officials.

Cabinet Office holds regular sponsorship meetings with Big Lottery Fund, which cover governance, accounting and efficiency issues but not funding applications or decisions.

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) for what reasons his Department made a second payment to the Society Network Foundation for the Get In project in October 2012; [207325]

(2) what steps he is taking to recover the money spent on the Get In project. [207322]

Mr Newmark: The Get In project experienced difficulties in its first quarter. The Cabinet Office worked with Society Network Foundation to assess whether these difficulties could be overcome. When it was concluded that they could not, the project was stopped and Cabinet Office paid only up to that point. This is standard practice when funding small charities to undertake innovative projects.

The Civil Society Compact states that funders should attempt to support organisations overcome difficulties and should give at least three months’ notice before ending a financial relationship with a charitable organisation.

The Social Investment Business is currently following their standard procedure to investigate and take appropriate action where funds received by Social Network Foundation for the Get In project may not have been used for the purposes for which the grant was given.

Regarding grant funds spent on the Get In project, Cabinet Office would not normally seek to recover funds spent in line with a grant agreement.

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EU Law

Mr Redwood: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many new EU directives and regulations have been transposed into UK law by his Department since May 2010. [207253]

Mr Maude: The Cabinet Office has transposed two EU directives into UK law since 2010 and six directly applicable regulations have come into effect in the Cabinet Office’s area of responsibility in the same period.

Television

Mr Bradshaw: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how much (a) his Department, (b) the Prime Minister's Office and (c) the Deputy Prime Minister's Office spent on televisions in (i) 2013 and (ii) 2014 to date. [207131]

Mr Maude: The Prime Minister’s Office and the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office are an integral part of the Cabinet Office.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Member for Ruislip, Northwood and Pinner (Mr Hurd) to the hon. Member for Barnsley East (Michael Dugher) on 8 October 2013, Official Report, column 170W.

Voluntary Work: Young People

Lyn Brown: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) what assessment he has made of regional variations in participation in the National Citizen Service; [207119]

(2) how much his Department has allocated to the National Citizen Service in the 2014-15 financial year; [207122]

(3) what estimate he has made of the number of people enrolled in the National Citizen Service. [207123]

Mr Newmark: Successive independent evaluations have shown that National Citizen Service has seen significant growth in participation across England and Northern Ireland, with the programme seeing its 100,000th participant this year. The programme is delivered by regional providers who are performance managed by the NCS Trust, an independent not-for-profit organisation. Regional performance is regularly monitored, along with other factors including quality of NCS delivery and the social mix of participants.

An independent evaluation of NCS will be published by Cabinet Office in 2015, after the conclusion of the 2014 NCS programmes, and will detail the costs and number of young participants during 2014.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Bovine Tuberculosis

Mr Godsiff: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) if she will place in the Library a copy of the internal review by her Department which upheld an appeal against the use of

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regulation 12(5)(c) for the protection of intellectual property to prevent the release of the results of the post-mortems carried out on badgers killed during the pilot culls; [207952]

(2) if she will place in the Library a copy of the internal review by her Department which upheld an appeal against the use of regulation 12(5)(c) of the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 in relation to the results of the post-mortems carried out on badgers killed during the pilot culls. [207957]

George Eustice: My officials have explained the handling of this case in separate correspondence. No such internal review took place as your initial request was made in a parliamentary question. The information on the post-mortems carried out during the culls as part of the monitoring of the humaneness of controlled shooting is now publicly available and can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/300388/humaneness-report.pdf

Dogs: Animal Welfare

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will introduce new guidelines to protect the welfare of dogs in cars; and if she will make a statement. [207134]

George Eustice: The Government already makes available up-to-date advice to owners when travelling with their dogs in cars. The advice is available on the gov.uk website:

https://www.gov.uk/animal-welfare-in-severe-weather

EU Law

Mr Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many new EU directives and regulations have been transposed into UK law by her Department since May 2010. [207259]

George Eustice: According to departmental records, DEFRA has transposed a total of 36 EU directives into UK law since May 2010, nine of which were transposed without the need to introduce new legislation.

We do not hold a central record of all directly applicable EU regulations coming into effect since 2010. Details of all current European legislation are on the Euro-Lex website:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/browse/summaries.html

Livestock: Transport

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she is taking to ensure that laws relating to the export of live animals are adhered to at ports; and if she will make a statement. [207829]

George Eustice: The Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency (AHVLA) is responsible for official controls (including risk-based inspections and checks at ports) in relation to rules on the export of live animals. These controls must be consistent with the relevant animal health and welfare legislation. Where animal

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welfare non-compliances are discovered, AHVLA will take the appropriate regulatory action and, where necessary, refer the matter to the local authority for enforcement action.

Scotland

Television

Mr Bradshaw: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how much his Department spent on the purchase of televisions in (a) 2013 and (b) 2014 to date. [207223]

David Mundell: The Scotland Office spend on the purchase of televisions was (a) £1,351.69 in 2013, and (b) £539.96 to date in 2014.

Education

Chemistry: Teachers

Sir Peter Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if she will increase the funding available for bursaries for chemistry Subject Knowledge Enhancement courses. [207365]

Mr Laws: Bursaries for pre-initial teacher training subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) courses are intended to support course participants’ travel and living costs while they are on the course, and are paid in line with the length of the course. The SKE operations manual contains more detail about funding levels and eligibility criteria for SKE training bursaries. We believe that existing SKE bursary levels are sufficient to meet participants’ needs and continue to see strong take-up of SKE courses. We will consider any representations from SKE course participants or providers on bursary funding levels.

Childminding

Lucy Powell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) when she plans to publish the results of the report on her Department's childminder agency pilots; [207947]

(2) how many (a) childminders and (b) parents responded to the IPSOS Mori and Ecorys survey on childminder agencies; when the results of the survey will be published; and how likely (i) childminders and (ii) parents who responded to the survey were to use a childminder agency. [207951]

Mr Gyimah: The Department for Education published a report which captures key learning from the evaluation of the childminder agency trials on Friday 5 September which is available online at:

www.gov.uk/government/publications/childminder-agency-trial-evaluation

Evidence for the evaluation was gathered through a variety of methods including case study interviews or focus groups with representatives from the trials, interviews with childminders and parents, analysis of emerging agency business models and two surveys; one with

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childminders and one with parents and carers in 15 of the 19 trial areas. 334 childminders and 424 parents and carers responded to surveys as part of the trials. These surveys are not fully representative of local populations of childminders and parents, and are indicative only.

Children: Mental Illness

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Education pursuant to the answer from the Minister of State for Care and Support of 4 June 2014, Official Report, column 102W, on mental illness, what assessment she has made of the impact of these psychiatric conditions on academic attainment levels at GCSE, A levels, Degree and Post Graduate Degree level. [207563]

Mr Timpson: The last official assessment of the levels of psychiatric conditions in young people was published in 2004 by the Office of National Statistics, the ‘Mental health of children and young people in Great Britain’1.

This found that across the general school population 24% of pupils were assessed as being behind in their schooling, with 9% assessed as being two or more years behind.

For those with clinically diagnosed mental health conditions the percentages were:

1. Conduct disorders—59% of children with conduct disorders were behind in their intellectual development, with 36% being two or more years behind

2. Emotional disorders—44% of children with an emotional disorder were behind in their intellectual development, with 23% being two or more years behind

3. Hyperkinetic disorders—65% of children with hyperkinetic disorders were behind in their intellectual development, with 18% being three or more years behind

4. Autistic spectrum disorders—72% of children with autistic spectrum disorders were behind in their intellectual development, with 39% being two or more years behind

5. Multiple disorders—63% of children with multiple disorders were behind in their intellectual development, with 40% being two or more years behind.

We recognise that early identification of mental health issues in children and young people and the provision of appropriate support and treatment can be key to educational attainment, and making a successful transition to adulthood. This is reflected in our advice and guidance to schools.

In June we published advice for schools on mental health and behaviour, helping them to identify and support pupils with unmet needs. The new 0-25 Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice, which came into effect this month, has a new category of needs entitled Social, Emotional and Mental Health. It promotes the earlier identification of an individual’s mental health needs and sets the expectation that children who are displaying concerning behaviours should be assessed to see if there are any underlying problems, including issues with mental health or emotional well-being.

The new MindEd web portal, funded by the Department of Health, provides more specific training and guidance on mental health to all professionals working with children and young people.

1 Available at:

www.hscic.gov.uk/pubs/mentalhealth04

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Pre-school Education

Lucy Powell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many of the large nursery chains offer funded places for two year olds as part of the Government's free 15 hours of early education for disadvantaged two year olds; and how many such places are offered in England. [207942]

Mr Gyimah: The Government does not collect this data. Data on Government funded early education, including early learning for two-year-olds is available online at:

www.gov.uk/government/publications/provision-for-children-under-5-years-of-age-january-2014

The Government encourages all high-quality early education providers to offer places for disadvantaged two-year-olds. The data published above shows that in January 2014 over 14,000 providers were delivering places for early learning for two-year-olds. This is very significant progress in advance of the 40% entitlement. The Government expects many more providers, including those in the large nursery chains, to offer places now the 40% entitlement has commenced.

Prevent Review

Diana Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) if she will publish detailed information on what work her Department has undertaken to implement paragraphs 10.49 and 10.55 of the Government's Review of the Prevent Agenda, published in June 2011; and if she will publish any assessments conducted into the effectiveness of that work; [207953]

(2) what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the Education Act 2011 in achieving the aims set out in paragraph 10.53 of the Government's Review of the Prevent Agenda, published in June 2011. [207954]

Mr Timpson: Keeping our children safe, and ensuring our schools prepare them for life in modern Britain, could not be more important. There is no place for extremist views in any school. A dedicated counter-extremism unit was established within the Department for Education in 2010 and has responsibility for implementing the commitments in the Prevent strategy. The Secretary of State's statement to the House on 22 July, in response to Peter Clarke's report into allegations about schools in Birmingham, set out the latest steps that the Government is taking to increase the resilience of schools to extremism, and the Secretary of State will be making a further statement to the House on this subject shortly.

Publicly-funded schools remain under a statutory duty to promote community cohesion and have an important part to play in supporting the creation of more integrated communities. This duty is complemented and reinforced by the requirements on schools to encourage respect for the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs. The Department has consulted on strengthening the independent schools standards, which apply to academies and free schools, to require schools to actively promote these values. Ofsted will introduce an equivalent expectation

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on maintained schools through changes to the Ofsted inspection framework later this year, supported by departmental guidance.

Pupils: Disadvantaged

Lucy Powell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education with reference to her Department's press notice of 16 July 2014 on pupil premium reform, to which 87 local authorities where performance of disadvantaged pupils is a concern the Minister of State for Schools wrote. [207950]

Mr Laws: I wrote to 87 local authorities in March and April 2014, raising my concern about the 2013 examination results of disadvantaged pupils in particular maintained schools within their areas, and asking them to support those schools’ improvement. The recipient list and criteria are below and will be published on GOV.UK shortly.

Letters were sent to local authorities where ministerial letters had been sent in the spring to a small number of maintained schools expressing concern about the progress of disadvantaged pupils at key stage 2, and the progress and/or overall attainment of disadvantaged pupils at key stage 4. Letters were also sent to local authorities where the average GCSE results of disadvantaged pupils across all of their maintained schools declined between 2011 and 2013 or between 2012 and 2013.

Local authorities in receipt of letters:

Barking and Dagenham

Barnsley

Bath and North East Somerset

Birmingham

Blackburn with Darwen

Blackpool

Bolton

Bracknell Forest

Bradford

Brent

Bristol

Buckinghamshire

Bury

Cambridgeshire

Central Bedfordshire

Cheshire East

Cornwall

Cumbria

Derbyshire

Devon

Doncaster

Dorset

Dudley

Durham

East Sussex

Essex

Gateshead

Gloucestershire

Hammersmith and Fulham

Hampshire

Hartlepool

Hertfordshire

Isle of Wight

Kent

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Kirklees

Knowsley

Lancashire

Leeds

Leicester city

Leicestershire

Lincolnshire

Manchester

Merton

Norfolk

North Lincolnshire

North Somerset

North Yorkshire

Northamptonshire

Northumberland

Nottingham City

Nottinghamshire

Oxfordshire

Peterborough

Portsmouth

Richmond upon Thames

Rotherham

Salford

Sandwell

Sefton

Sheffield

Shropshire

Slough

Somerset

South Gloucestershire

Southampton

Southend

Staffordshire

Stockport

Stockton-on-Tees

Stoke on Trent

Suffolk

Surrey

Swindon

Tameside

Trafford

Wakefield

Walsall

Warrington

Warwickshire

West Berkshire

West Sussex

Wigan

Wiltshire

Wirral

Wolverhampton

Worcestershire

York

Science: Teachers

Sir Peter Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many (a) pre-ITT and (b) post-ITT Subject Knowledge Enhancement courses were taken in (i) chemistry, (ii) biology and (iii) physics in the last five years. [207366]

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Mr Laws: The National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) (and its predecessor) have not allocated places or funding to support Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) for the subject of biology meaning only physics and chemistry can be reported on.

Although the academic year 2013/14 has now concluded, the recruitment data for this period will not be collected until November 2014. The table at Figure 1. below is, therefore, limited to recruitment data supplied by SKE providers for each of the four academic years prior to the academic year 2013/14. Furthermore, funding for post-ITT SKE only began in the academic year 2011/12 and so is not applicable to academic years 2009/10 or 2010/11.

Fig. 1 Pre and post ITT recruitment from the academic year 2009/10 to the academic year 2012/13 in SKE for physics and chemistry
 PhysicsChemistry
Academic YearPre-ITTPost-ITTPre-ITTPost-ITT

2012/13

437

253

474

159

2011/12

509

139

574

87

2010/11

590

n/a

522

n/a

2009/10

673

n/a

577

n/a

Social Services: Children

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if she will review the way in which local authorities carry out their responsibilities for corporate parenting and take any steps needed to ensure that training for councillors involved in that role is both adequate and up-to-date. [207873]

Mr Timpson: We expect all local authorities to be good corporate parents to the children in their care. The standard of corporate parenting is subject to regular review as part of Ofsted inspection. In particular, Ofsted judgments about the quality of leadership assess the extent to which the local authority is an active, strong and committed corporate parent that knows the children and young people it looks after well; is an effective and successful champion of their progress (particularly in education and learning); and an ambitious corporate parent, ensuring that each child has every opportunity to succeed.

We recognise that effective corporate parenting is everyone's business and have consequently funded work by the National Children's Bureau (NCB) to raise awareness of corporate parenting among elected members. This project brings local authority members and directors of children's services together with children in care councils to enhance the voice of the child and spread good practice. The project has also produced training materials which are available to all local authorities.

Special Educational Needs

Steve McCabe: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether her Department conducted a financial impact assessment of the effects of the most recent Education Financial Settlement on students with special educational needs. [207188]

Mr Laws: On 17 July, I announced changes to the way that school funding would be distributed next year. These included the allocation of £390 million extra schools funding to the least fairly funded local authorities,

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and some small improvements to the allocation of funds for pupils and students with special educational needs (SEN). The Department for Education consulted on how to allocate the additional funding, and carefully considered the impact of the funding distribution methodology on individual local authorities' ability to meet the needs of such young people. No authority will be worse off as a result of the changes. All authorities should, therefore, be in a position to ensure that all pupils in their area with SEN get the level of support that they require.

Teachers: Disciplinary Proceedings

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Education on how many occasions in the last 12 months decision-makers within her Department have issued sanctions to teachers after disciplinary hearings that have differed from the sanctions recommended by the Professional Conduct Panel of the National College for Teaching and Leadership; and in what respects those sanctions have differed from the recommended sanctions. [207201]

Mr Laws: In the period 1 September 2013 to 31 August 2014, decision makers issued sanctions to teachers after disciplinary hearings that differed from the sanctions recommended by the Professional Conduct Panel of the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) on seven occasions. Details are included within the table below.

Number of casesRecommendation of panelFinal decision

3

No prohibition.

Prohibition for life with opportunity to apply for the order to be set aside after a minimum period of two years.

3

Prohibition for life with opportunity to apply for the order to be set aside after a minimum period of five years.

Prohibition for life with no opportunity to apply for the order to be set aside.

1

Prohibition for life with opportunity to apply for the order to be set aside after a minimum period of 10 years.

Prohibition for life with no opportunity to apply for the order to be set aside.

Justice

EU Law

Mr Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many new EU directives and regulations have been transposed into UK law by his Department since May 2010. [207264]

Mr Vara: Since May 2010, my Department has transposed five EU Directives into UK law.

In the same period, two EU Regulations with application to the UK (either where the UK has exercised its Title V Justice and Home Affairs opt-in, or where no opt-in exists) have come into force and now apply. Two further Regulations in which the UK will participate have come into force, but do not yet apply.

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European Convention on Human Rights

Mr Slaughter: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what his policy is on reform of the European Convention on Human Rights; and if he will make a statement. [207316]

Mr Vara: I refer the hon. Member to the reply given on 1 September 2014, Parliament identifying number 206542.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Ashya King

Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking to ensure that relatives of Ashya King other than his parents are being facilitated to accompany him (a) whilst in hospital in Spain and (b) on his return journey to the UK; and if he will make a statement. [207802]

Mr Lidington: Foreign and Commonwealth Office Consular officials in Spain have been in regular contact with Ashya’s family since he was located and supported his elder brothers in securing daily access to Ashya while in hospital from 0900 to 2200.

Business: Human Rights

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with Ministers in the Home Office on UK efforts to support the protection of human rights in the supply chains for UK companies and products. [207614]

Mr Lidington: Last September, the UK became the first country to launch a National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights. On 11 June the Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, my right hon. Friend the Member for East Devon (Mr Swire), together with the Minister for Modem Slavery and Organised Crime, my hon. Friend the Member for Staffordshire Moorlands (Karen Bradley), and the Minister for Consumer Affairs and Employment Relations, the hon. Member for East Dunbartonshire (Jo Swinson), held a roundtable discussion with a number of companies and bodies representing business interests, including the British Retail Consortium and the Ethical Trading Initiative, on the voluntary approach to addressing human rights abuses in the supply chains of large UK companies. Our action on tackling slavery in supply chains is consistent with our commitment on business and human rights as set out in our National Action Plan.

Climate Change

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the efficacy of his Department's work on climate change; and what future steps his Department plans to take to support international action on climate change. [207805]

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James Duddridge: Ministers have endorsed the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's (FCO) climate change priorities, including work with the Foreign Secretary’s Special Representative, the Department for Energy and Climate Change and other Government Departments and our global network of climate attaches. This is in support of the Government’s aim of achieving a global agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the UN in Paris in December 2015. We work closely with international partners, including through FCO Programme Funds. Recent examples of impact include China launching seven regional Emissions Trading Schemes; international promotion of the UK’s Climate Change Act with influence among some 60 countries taking forward climate laws; and under the UK’s 2013 Presidency, the G8 recognising that climate change presents a risk to global security. We also promote UK low carbon and environmental goods and services, with UK exports valued at £3.4 trillion in 2011/12 and UK ranked sixth globally with a market share of 3.7%. Climate change and energy security remain foreign policy priorities for the FCO; we keep future plans under constant review.

EU Law

Mr Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many new EU directives and regulations have been transposed into UK law by his Department since May 2010. [207260]

Mr Lidington: Since May 2010 the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has not transposed any EU directives or regulations into UK law.

Mr Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what fines have been levied on the UK Government for non-compliance with EU directives since November 2012. [207280]

Mr Lidington: The UK Government has not been fined for non-compliance with EU directives since November 2012.

Ireland

Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress his Department has made on exploring potential funding options for the Causeway British-Irish Exchange Programme. [207497]

Mr Lidington: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office and other Government Departments continue to explore whether ongoing or transitional financial support is available to the Causeway Youth Exchange Programme following the British Council decision to withdraw financial support. We will look at all potential options and endeavour to keep the programme stakeholders updated on progress.

Lesotho

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps his Department is taking to assist in the maintenance of peace and stability in Lesotho. [207877]

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James Duddridge: I am deeply concerned by the current political and security situation in Lesotho. Staff at our high commission in South Africa, who cover our relations with Lesotho, are closely monitoring events and are in close contact with the key political actors. In my statement of 2 September I welcomed the engagement by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and expressed our hope that all Lesotho’s parties will work together to ensure disputes are settled in a peaceful constitutional manner. Lesotho is among the issues I will discuss during my visit to South Africa next week.

Sri Lanka

Robert Halfon: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the merits of the appointment of a team of experts led by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to assist the investigation into alleged abuses in Sri Lanka. [207273]

Mr Swire: On 26 June, the former Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), welcomed the appointment of experts to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Investigation on Sri Lanka. As his statement noted: ‘the inclusion of Martti Artisaahri, Silvia Cartwright and Asma Jahangir completes a strong team with a clear mandate from the UN Human Rights Council’ to investigate alleged violations and abuses on both sides of Sri Lanka’s military conflict. The UK played a key role in securing the investigation.

The full statement can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/foreign-secretary-welcomes-announcement-of-un-investigation-team-on-sri-lanka

Television

Mr Bradshaw: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much his Department spent on the purchase of televisions in (a) 2013 and (b) 2014 to date. [207215]

Mr Lidington: This information is not held centrally. It could be collected only at disproportionate cost.

Defence

Armed Forces: Vehicles

Bridget Phillipson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 19 June 2014, Official Report, column 726W, on armed forces: vehicles, how many insurance claims relating to Ministry of Defence vehicles were (a) made and (b) paid by his Department on each of the last 10 years. [207501]

Mr Dunne: In line with general Government practice, the Ministry of Defence does not normally insure its assets. Claims against the Department arising out of incidents involving its motor vehicles are handled under contract by its third party motor claims administrators, Gallagher Bassett International Limited. The information sought, which is readily available only for the period from 2007-08, is given in the tables:

5 Sep 2014 : Column 360W

Number of claims
 Class 
Received yearMotor Third Party Bodily InjuryMotor Third Party Property DamageTotal

2007-08

241

2,225

2,466

2008-09

299

1,916

2,215

2009-10

295

1,592

1,887

2010-11

325

1,534

1,859

2011-12

341

1,320

1,661

2012-13

295

1,324

1,619

2013-14

285

1,273

1,558

2014-15 to date

66

378

444

Total

2,147

11,562

13,709

Number paid
 Class 
Received yearMotor Third Party Bodily InjuryMotor Third Party Property DamageTotal

2007-08

197

1,098

1,295

2008-09

251

1,091

1,342

2009-10

239

1,033

1,272

2010-11

270

978

1,248

2011-12

287

814

1,101

2012-13

196

826

1,022

2013-14

148

647

795

2014-15 to date

4

74

78

Total

1,592

6,561

8,153

Military Bases: Northern Ireland

Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what progress has been made on the investigation into the deaths of soldiers at Abercorn barracks in Ballykinler in December 2012 and February 2013. [207683]

Mr Francois: The deaths of two soldiers at Abercorn Barracks are a personal tragedy for their families and loved ones, and our thoughts remain with them. As is normal with the death of Armed Forces personnel in the UK, these have been investigated by the local Home Office police force, in this case the Police Service of Northern Ireland. We understand that they have concluded their investigations and passed their conclusions to the Coroner, who is in the process of establishing formal inquests into the soldiers’ deaths.

An internal service inquiry has been established by the Army to consider the facts and identify any lessons to prevent anything like this happening again. This is a complex inquiry, involving a significant number of witnesses and, while we are seeking to complete it as soon as possible, determining the findings and recommendations will naturally take time. It is important that the inquiry is conducted properly and given the appropriate space to reach its conclusions. The families have been kept informed throughout.

RAF Brize Norton

Mr Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what progress is being made on plans for an air freight terminal at RAF Brize Norton. [207588]

Anna Soubry: A modern replacement freight handling facility at RAF Brize Norton is currently planned for delivery early in the next decade.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 361W

Service Personnel and Veterans Agency

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many complaints the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency received in each year since 2010; and whether those complaints have been categorised. [207037]

Anna Soubry: The Service Personnel and Veterans Agency, now Veterans UK, received the following number of complaints about the standard of customer service received, categorised into the Armed Forces Pension Scheme (AFPS), War Pensions Scheme (WPS) and Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS). The number of complaints about standards of customer service from military personnel were only counted from January 2014.

2010

AFPS 30

WPS/AFCS 445

Total Complaints 475

2011

AFPS 15

WPS/AFCS 420

Total Complaints 435

2012

AFPS 10

WPS/AFCS 460

Total Complaints 470

2013

AFPS 30

WPS/AFCS 290

Total Complaints 320

2014 (to 31 July)

AFPS 25

WPS/AFCS 95

Military Personnel 10

Total Complaints 130

Television

Mr Bradshaw: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department spent on the purchase of televisions in (a) 2013 and (b) 2014 to date. [207211]

Mr Dunne: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Any expenditure on televisions must be necessary, appropriate, cost-effective and an admissible charge to public funds.

TNT

Bridget Phillipson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many files have been lost by TNT archive services in each year of the existing contract. [207299]

Anna Soubry: Since commencement of the Ministry of Defence-TNT Pan Government Records Management Contract on 18 Dec 2003, no files have been lost by TNT archive services.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 362W

Unmanned Air Vehicles

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of Elbit's performance in the Watchkeeper programme. [207383]

Mr Dunne: None. UAV Tactical Systems Ltd, a joint venture company owned by Elbit and Thales, is a sub-contractor of Thales UK, the prime contractor for the Watchkeeper programme. It is the responsibility of prime contractors to select and manage the performance of their sub-contractors.

Veterans: Mental Illness

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many and what percentage of veterans who have left the armed forces in the last 20 years have suffered mental illness. [207562]

Anna Soubry: Information on the number and percentage of veterans who have left the Armed Forces in the last 20 years and have suffered from mental illness is not held by the Ministry of Defence.

However, as of March 2014, there were 121,900 ex-Service personnel in receipt of a disablement pension under the War Pension Scheme. Of these, 10,610 (9%) were in receipt of a disablement pension where the recorded condition relates to a mental disorder. As of 31 March 2014, there were 11,165 personnel, who were no longer in Service on 1 August 2014, awarded compensation under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme for an injury or illness attributable to Service. Of these, 1,120 (10%) were awarded compensation where the recorded condition relates to a mental disorder.

Warships

Oliver Colvile: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) when he expects a decision to be made on the naming of the new Type 26 frigates; [207163]


(2) what the process is for the naming of Royal Navy ships; [207164]


(3) if he will name one of the new Type 26 frigates HMS Plymouth. [207165]

Mr Dunne: The Ships’ Names and Badges Committee (SNBC) is responsible for considering and assessing the possible names for a new ship or class of ship. The committee considers all names which have been proposed, formally and informally, and presents its recommendations to the Navy Board. The name(s) chosen by the Navy Board are forwarded to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence before being submitted to Her Majesty the Queen for final approval. A final decision with regards to this process is not expected until the Type 26 Global Combat Ship programme has completed its assessment phase and any subsequent investment decisions are complete. The SNBC has noted the proposal to use the name HMS PLYMOUTH.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 363W

Prime Minister

Counter-terrorism

Steve Rotheram: To ask the Prime Minister what discussions he has had with the (a) Home Secretary and (b) the Secretary of State for Defence on protection from terrorism in northern cities following the most recent rise in the terrorism threat level. [207924]

The Prime Minister: I have regular discussions with the Home Secretary and Secretary of State for Defence.

The Government's first priority is to make sure we do everything possible to keep our people safe.

Islamic State

Paul Flynn: To ask the Prime Minister what recent discussions he has had with his EU counterparts on plans to refuse entry to UK passport holders suspected of participation in terrorist activities with the Islamic State while in Iraq or Syria; and whether in such discussions he has set out to which other countries he expects such passport holders to go after exclusion. [207686]

The Prime Minister: I refer the hon. Member to the statement I made on 1 September 2014, Official Report, columns 23-27.

Work and Pensions

Atos Healthcare: Gloucestershire

Richard Graham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many medically qualified staff have been employed by Atos in (a) Gloucestershire and (b) Gloucester in each of the last five years. [207160]

Mr Harper: Atos Healthcare has an Assessment Centre in Gloucester undertaking ESA/IBR assessments for those claimants living in Gloucestershire.

While there are a small number of medically qualified personnel permanently based at Gloucester Assessment Centre, other medically qualified personnel also regularly complete assessments at this site.

The number of medically qualified personnel undertaking ESA/IBR assessments at Gloucester Assessment Centre in each of the last five years is as follows:

As at September to August each yearNumber

2009-10

24

2010-11

41

2011-12

24

2012-13

25

2013-14

16

The reason the number of medically qualified personnel undertaking ESA/IBR assessments at Gloucester Assessment Centre in each of the last five years has reduced is due to there now being a regular team of 4 practitioners based in Gloucester, which has meant fewer practitioners travelling from other Centres to conduct assessments in Gloucester.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 364W

Employment and Support Allowance

Mr Godsiff: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether his Department monitors the number of employment and support allowance claims which are awaiting action by (a) a work capability assessment provider and (b) his Department. [207549]

Mr Harper: Yes.

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the average time taken to process a mandatory re-consideration of an employment and support allowance is; and if he will make a statement. [207948]

Mr Harper: This information is not yet available. DWP statisticians are currently working to collate and quality assure data on Mandatory Reconsideration for Employment and Support Allowance as a priority. The Department has committed to publishing the statistics when the Departmental statisticians judge that the data meet the standards set out in the UK Statistics Authority’s Codes of Practice. The aim is to release an initial set of official statistics on Mandatory Reconsideration by the end of 2014.

Employment Schemes: Young People

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State for Employment of 1 September 2014, Official Report, column 16, on youth employment (support) how much funding from the youth contract wage incentive scheme has been re-allocated; and to which other areas. [207949]

Esther McVey: DWP has reallocated funds, from the total £1 billion Youth Contract, to focus on the hardest to help youth groups who are still finding it difficult to take up vacancies and encourage self-employment, the table below lists the additional support that is being provided from the Wage Incentive underspend since 2011.

Wage Incentive Underspend Re-allocationFunding (£million)

Additional Jobcentre advisor resource in 20 Hotspot areas

56.0

Extension of the New Enterprise Allowance (NEA) Scheme to December 2014

35.0

Funding for BIS for New Enterprise Allowance (NEA) start-up loans

20.0

City Deals (including £5 million for Scotland and Wales and £1.8 million for Glasgow)

56.8

Heywood review of 16-21 year olds: funding to support the 16-17 NEET pilots and the BIS 18-21 Work Skills pilots

6.0

Additional funding for BIS to support young people further away from the labour market for education and training activities intended to lead initially to Traineeships or equivalent provision, and subsequently employment

1.1

Intensive Jobcentre advisor support for disadvantaged NEETs in selected areas

1.1

Total

176.0

5 Sep 2014 : Column 365W

Housing Benefit: East Sussex

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the effects of the under-occupancy penalty on social housing tenants in (a) Brighton and Hove and (b) East Sussex; and if he will make a statement. [207092]

Esther McVey: The information requested is not available.

On a national scale, reversing the removal of spare room subsidy policy would cost the tax-payer approximately £500 million per annum.

Housing Benefit: Social Rented Housing

Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will make an estimate of (a) the amount of savings accruing to the public purse through penalties incurred on housing benefit arising from the under occupancy penalty to date and (b) the amount paid in discretionary housing payments in that time. [207317]

Esther McVey: The information is as follows.

(a) The Removal of the Spare Room Subsidy is estimated to save around £500 million per year in 2013/14 and 2014/15.

(b) In 2013/14 total discretionary housing payment expenditure by local authorities across Great Britain was £176,393,889. This figure includes amounts spent by Local Authorities over and above their government contribution in DHP funding. At the end of the financial year, 240 out of 380 LAs across Great Britain under-spent by £13,285,430 against the available Government contribution. This was in addition to the £7,111,693 unallocated from the £20 million reserve fund.

Detailed information about discretionary housing payment expenditure was published in June 2014 and can be found at

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/322455/use-of-discretionary-housing-payments-june-2014.pdf

Mr Kennedy: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what financial information is sent to his Department from individual local authorities on the administrative costs incurred in the preparation for, and the processing of, the under-occupancy penalty; and if he will make a statement. [207327]

Esther McVey: The Department has provided funding to each local authority to meet the additional costs resulting from our reforms to Housing Benefit. Local Authority Associations were fully consulted when determining these new costs.

The Department does not collect details of expenditure on Housing Benefit administration from individual local authorities.

Jobseeker's Allowance: Disqualification

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) how many youth rate jobseeker's allowance claimants have been referred for sanction while they undertake a traineeship since August 2013; [207912]

(2) what steps are taken against a claimant of youth rate jobseeker's allowance who leaves a traineeship before it was completed. [207935]

5 Sep 2014 : Column 366W

Esther McVey: Youth claimant attendance and participation on a traineeship is voluntary so there would not be any sanction if they chose to leave the programme early. However, Jobcentre Plus work coaches interview anyone who does not complete their traineeship to establish why, and to determine the most appropriate next steps towards achieving their job goal.

Personal Independence Payment

Richard Graham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what recent assessment his Department has made of Atos's performance in carrying out personal independence payment assessments. [207159]

Mr Harper: The Department's contracts with Atos Healthcare (and Capita) for the delivery of assessments for Personal Independence Payment include a full set of service level agreements setting out the Department's expectations for service delivery. We are closely monitoring their progress and are taking action to drive up performance where this does not meet the required standards. We are working closely with our suppliers to speed up the process for claimants.

By the autumn, we expect no one to be waiting for an assessment for longer than 26 weeks and by the end of the year, we expect no one will be waiting longer than 16 weeks.

Alec Shelbrooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions when applications for personal independent payment will be available online. [207270]

Mr Harper: While Personal Independence Payment (PIP) claims are not currently available online, part of our longer term plan is to develop an online claim service for PIP that meets the needs of our claimants. It is important that we get the design of this right before moving to implementation.

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the comparative performance of Capita and Atos in conducting personal independence payment assessments. [207332]

Mr Harper: The Department's contracts with Atos Healthcare and Capita for the delivery of assessments for personal independence payment include a full set of service level agreements setting out the Department's expectations for service delivery, including quality of assessments and the number of days to provide advice to the Department. We are closely monitoring their progress and are taking action to drive up performance where this does not meet the required standards.

We are aware that, in many cases, it is taking longer than we would like for claimants to have their assessments with Capita and Atos Healthcare. To ensure they deliver we are working closely with our suppliers to speed up the process for claimants.

By the autumn, we expect no one to be waiting for an assessment for longer than 26 weeks and by the end of the year, we expect no one will be waiting longer than 16 weeks.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 367W

Personal Independence Payment: Scotland

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many personal independence payment (a) registrations and (b) decisions were made in the (i) KA and (ii) PA postcode areas between April 2013 and March 2014. [207333]

Mr Harper: Published statistics show that in the KA postcode area there were (a) 2,840 registrations and (b) 1,070 decisions made for the personal independence payment. In the PA postcode area, there were (a) 2,430 registrations, and (b) 680 decisions made for the personal independence payment.

Social Security Benefits

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 24 June 2014, Official Report, column 180W, on social security benefits, if he will conduct an estimate of the saving to the public purse generated by the reduction of (a) employment and support allowance and (b) incapacity benefit for individuals in receipt of a pension income of more than £85 per week in 2013-14. [207081]

Mr Harper: We have no plans to undertake such an estimate.

John Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the difference between changes in (a) carers' benefits, (b) disability benefits and (c) older people's benefits and the rate of inflation in each of the last three years. [207636]

Steve Webb: Carers' and disability benefits, and the additional state pension, must by statute be uprated in line with prices. So the increase in those benefits over the last three years has reflected the increase in the consumer prices index.

The basic state pension has been increased with the triple lock (by the highest of average earnings, CPI or 2.5%), and the standard minimum guarantee in pension credit has been uprated in line with the cash increase in the basic state pension. In each of the last three years, this means that the standard minimum guarantee has increased by more than the minimum requirement of the increase in average earnings. The resulting over-indexation of the standard minimum guarantee has been funded through an increase in the savings credit threshold and the associated reduction in the savings credit maximum.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 368W

The table indicates the percentage increases in CPI; basic state pension; average earnings; and the standard minimum guarantee in each of the past three years.

Percentage
 2012-132013-142014-15

CPI

5.2

2.2

2.7

Basic state pension

5.2

2.5

2.7

Average earnings

2.8

1.6

1.2

Pension credit standard minimum guarantee

3.9

1.9

2.0

Social Security Benefits: Appeals

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what right of appeal claimants will have against reports and decisions made through doorstep interviews where their benefits are affected; and by what legislative means that system of appeals will be introduced. [207153]

Mr Harper: The Department visits some benefit claimants in their home to review their benefit claim and check if the Department or Local Authority is paying the correct amount of benefit. If following the interview it is considered that a claimant’s benefit is incorrect the information is passed to a Decision Maker in that part of the Department, or the Local Authority, which pays the benefit to the claimant. If the Decision Maker decides that the benefit award is incorrect a new decision, with dispute rights-Mandatory Reconsideration followed by appeal-will be sent to the claimant. These are not new dispute rights introduced for these home visits. They apply to all appealable benefit decisions and arise from the Social Security Act 1998 and the Welfare Reform Act 2012.

Social Security Benefits: South West

Richard Graham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many (a) work capability assessments and (b) personal independence payment assessments has been undertaken by Atos in (i) the South West, (ii) Gloucestershire and (iii) Gloucester in the last 12 months; and how many assessments resulted in the claimant being found fit for work. [207128]

Mr Harper: Information on the number of Personal Independent Payment assessments completed by provider is not available.

The information we can provide for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) work capability assessments is shown in the following table.

Total number of ESA Work Capability Assessments and, of these, the number found Fit for Work in the South West and Gloucestershire: 1 October 2012 - 30 September 2013
  Of which:
 Total (where functional assessment has been completed)Fit for Work
AreaESA new claims—Initial assessmentsESA claims—Repeat assessmentsIncapacity Benefit re-assessmentsESA new claims—Initial assessmentsESA claims—Repeat assessmentsIncapacity Benefit re-assessments

South West Region

14,400

2,000

26,800

3,900

100

3,400

5 Sep 2014 : Column 369W

5 Sep 2014 : Column 370W

Gloucestershire

1,700

200

2,300

600

*

300

* = Denotes 0 or under 50. Notes: 1. Figures are rounded to the nearest 100. 2. Figures for Gloucestershire County are derived by summing the following Local Authorities: Cheltenham, Cotswold, Forest of Dean, Gloucester, Stroud and Tewkesbury. 3. These data are not available by parliamentary constituency. 4. Data are for the 12 months: 1 October 2012 to 30 September 2013, which is the latest data available. 5. The initial assessment outcomes relate to the claimant’s first assessment before appeal and may include cases that will have been revised following reconsideration. 6. The outcome recorded is the final DWP Decision Maker’s decision or the recommendation made by the Atos Healthcare Professional where the Decision Maker’s decision is not yet available. 7. The data presented above comes from benefit claims data held by the Department for Work and Pensions. It relates to new and repeat ESA claims and Incapacity Benefits Reassessments. The reassessment of existing incapacity benefits claimants was rolled out nationally from April 2011. Source: Data in the table above is derived from administrative data held by the DWP and assessment data provided by Atos Healthcare.

In October 2008, ESA replaced Incapacity Benefit for new claims. The reassessment of existing Incapacity Benefit claimants to see if they are eligible for ESA was rolled out nationally from April 2011 and is ongoing.

Telephone Services

Mr Godsiff: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the average time is which a caller to a Department for Work and Pensions telephone line which is not free to call is made to wait while on hold, when listening to a pre-recorded message or selecting options at the start of a telephone call; and what the financial gain is to his Department from the charge levied for a call of that length. [207173]

Steve Webb: This data relates to non-0800 calls and represents the period from the point a customer enters a queue to the point they are connected to an agent, and is drawn from Working Age, Pension Age, Disability and Universal Credit services but excludes Child Maintenance Group. From July 2014 the average speed to answer for such telephony lines was three minutes 20 seconds.

Prior to 1 April no revenue was received for 0845 but with effect from 1st April 2014, the Department changed procedures to receive a rebate equivalent to 0.3p per minute for calls to its 0845 services: this, includes time listening to pre-recorded information, selecting call routing options and waiting for an available agent. This arrangement is in line with Cabinet Office guidance published in December 2013 and is not revenue but used to offset Direct Spend on other services provided by the same supplier. In addition, the Department can confirm that benefit claim lines operate 0800 free numbers. For other help lines the Department is introducing 0345 numbers in addition to its 0845 numbers (customers can then choose the cheapest call option dependent on their telephone or mobile operator.)

Mr Godsiff: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what financial gain his Department has made arising from the use of telephone lines which are not free to call in each of the last five years for which figures are available. [207183]

Steve Webb: In the five financial years to and including 2013-14 the Department for Work and Pensions received no direct financial or non-financial benefit from its telephony provider for the operation of its telephone services. In line with Cabinet Office guidance published in December 2013, the Department has negotiated a rebate against the cost of providing 0845 services which has a value equivalent to 0.3p per minute for calls to its 0845 services. This arrangement was only effective from 1 April 2014 and the rebate will be used to reduce the costs of other services provided by the same supplier, and currently this negotiated procedure has accrued circa £117,000 (to August 2014.)

Universal Credit

Rachel Reeves: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what proportion of universal credit claimants who have a housing cost element in their payment (a) in total and (b) in each local authority area are in arrears on rent payment; [207867]

(2) how many universal credit claimants (a) in total and (b) in each local authority are in arrears on rent payments; [207868]

(3) how many and what proportion of universal credit claimants (a) in total and (b) in each local authority area have a housing cost element in their payment; [207869]

(4) how many payments to universal credit claimants have been made direct to a landlord (a) in total and (b) in each local authority area to date. [207870]

Steve Webb: The information requested is not currently available.

The Department published its strategy for releasing official statistics on Universal Credit (UC) in September 2013 which can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/universal-credit-statistics

As outlined in the strategy, officials are currently quality assuring data for UC therefore it is not yet possible to give a definitive list of what statistics will be provided in the future. These statistics however will be published in accordance with the relevant protocols in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 371W

The latest official experimental statistics on UC can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/universal-credit-statistics

Work Capability Assessment

Richard Graham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what performance targets his Department has set for Atos's contract under the work capability assessment; and whether such targets have been met. [207158]

Mr Harper: The Performance of Atos is measured across a range of service level agreements setting out the Department's expectation for service delivery.

The Department has given Atos Healthcare a clearance target that we expect them to achieve by the end of the contract. We are closely monitoring their performance and currently Atos Healthcare are consistently achieving our monthly clearance expectations.

We are working closely with Atos Healthcare to continually improve their performance and have put in place changes to better manage the flow of work between the Department, all designed to reduce waiting times for claimants. These measures are taking effect and the backlog of cases has continued to fall over the past few months.

Business, Innovation and Skills

EU Law

Mr Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many new EU directives and regulations have been transposed into UK law by his Department since May 2010. [207251]

Jo Swinson: Details of all EU legislation, including full details of all EU directives that have come into force since May 2010, can be found on the European Commission's website:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/homepage.html

Holiday Leave

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent discussions he has had with his EU counterparts on the inclusion of non-compulsory and non-guaranteed overtime in the calculation of holiday pay; and if he will make a statement. [207840]

Jo Swinson: The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, my right hon. Friend the Member for Twickenham (Vince Cable), and other BIS Ministers regularly meet other European Ministers and discuss a wide range of issues. Regular discussions also take place at official level.

Minimum Wage

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills pursuant to the answer of 25 June 2014, Official Report, column 246W, on the

5 Sep 2014 : Column 372W

national minimum wage, how many of the firms named and shamed for breach of the national minimum wage up to 8 June 2014 were issued notices of underpayments once the firm had dissolved; what the time was between each underpayment and the time of issuing of notice; how many of the employers named and shamed

(a)

paid their employees the underpayment and

(b)

paid a financial penalty to the Government; and if he will make a statement. [207292]

Jo Swinson: The Government is committed to increasing compliance with minimum wage legislation and effective enforcement of it. Everyone who is entitled to the minimum wage should receive it.

All 30 employers that have been named and shamed up to 8 June 2014 were issued with a Notice of Underpayment (NoU) and were still in existence when the NoU was issued.

The Department's answer to the hon. Member's parliamentary question of 25 June 2014, Official Report, column 246W, sets out the months that the NoU were issued. HMRC do not record the time between the date of each underpayment and the issue of the Notice of Underpayment. HMRC can pursue arrears claims for workers going back up to six years and therefore a worker may complain up to six years after the time they think they were underpaid. Additionally, investigations following a complaint may identify further underpaid workers or other periods of underpayment going back several years.

All of the employers who were named and shamed paid the arrears due to workers and also the financial penalty imposed.

Street Trading

Dan Byles: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills on what date his Department plans to meet pedlar stakeholders to discuss Consultation documents BIS/12/605 and 606 on street trading and pedlar laws as proposed by his Department via email on 19 December 2013. [207078]

Jo Swinson: The Government's response to the consultation held in 2012/13 will be published soon and once it is, BIS officials will be very happy to meet with pedlar stakeholders.

Textiles

Mr Ward: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps his Department is taking to increase textile manufacturing in the UK. [207527]

Matthew Hancock [holding answer 3 September 2014]: Companies in the textiles manufacturing sector can access help and advice to grow their business through ‘GREAT”

www.greatbusiness.gov.uk

or

www.gov.uk

eligible businesses can gain support in areas such as starting, running, funding, staffing and expanding a business.

5 Sep 2014 : Column 373W

BIS has provided targeted support to the textiles sector in a number of ways. Firstly, £12.8 million has been made available from the Regional Growth Fund to support the Textiles Growth Programme, which is focused on creating and safeguarding 1,020 jobs in textiles by supporting capital projects, skills training and research and development in the North of England.

Growth Deals will allow Local Enterprise Partnerships with a textiles manufacturing presence in their regions to prioritise the financial support available (£2 billion a year for 6 years from 2015/16 to 2020/2) for proposals that target this sector.

The Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) provides grants and loans to successful projects demonstrating real ambition to create globally competitive supply chains. £3.9 million of AMSCI funding has been awarded to C & J Antich Ltd to pioneer a technique for weaving Aluminium Dioxide thread into 3D shapes to form the basis for the production of ‘reinforced aluminium’.

Additional funding of £100 million for AMSCI 2014 was announced in April. The new round is open to applications from all organisations operating as part of a manufacturing supply chain including textile manufacturers.

The Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) offers expert advice and grant support to eligible manufacturing companies throughout England. MAS delivers a range of support to manufacturing companies; including those in the textiles sector; ranging from company specific diagnostics, workforce up skilling and grant funding for specific projects to achieve the company’s growth ambitions. Since January 2012 MAS have supported 334 companies in the textiles and leather sector to deliver 417 company specific projects, a further 109 projects are due for completion this financial year. 1521 business diagnostics have been undertaken with companies in the textiles and leather sector.

As part of the Sector Mentoring Fund, Manchester Economic Solutions Ltd was awarded £77,500 in January to deliver Mentor Tex, which is a textile sector mentoring programme concentrated in key textiles regions such as Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Yorkshire. The scheme has attracted interest from a wide range of textiles businesses, with 32 mentees and 13 mentors already signed up and other in the pipeline. To date 12 mentoring relationships are already in place and we expect to meet project targets by the end of the summer.

UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) can also help the domestic supply chain for textiles exploit opportunities for exporting into new markets overseas. We are also helping raise skills levels through an unprecedented focus on vocational training, including Higher Level Apprenticeships which will provide for higher level skills and beyond into postgraduate level and professional qualifications.

Finally, the textiles sector, particularly technical textiles, continues to have access to opportunities for technology transfer and the exchange of knowledge provided by the Knowledge Transfer Network.

International Development

Africa

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what reports she has received on (a) the humanitarian situation in the Central African

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Republic and

(b)

the humanitarian implications of broader insecurity in the Sahel. [207137]

Lynne Featherstone: Ministers are regularly updated on the situation on the Central African Republic (CAR). The humanitarian situation in CAR and among refugees remains critical. Malnutrition rates among refugee children are now over 30%, above the emergency threshold. Insecurity and poor rainfall mean that an estimated 1.7 million people or a third of the population are food insecure across CAR.

The UK has provided £25.5 million in humanitarian and development assistance to the Central African Republic (CAR) crisis since mid-2013.

Across the Sahel region there are ongoing conflicts in Mali, CAR and northern Nigeria which have caused the displacement of thousands of people to the neighbouring countries of Niger, Chad, Cameroon and DRC. The UK has provided £103 million in humanitarian support to the Sahel since the beginning of 2013 to help over 1.6 million people with immediate life-saving assistance.

Burma

Valerie Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many of the survivors of rape by the Burmese Army whose cases have been documented by the Women's League of Burma have received humanitarian and specialist support from her Department. [207564]

Mr Swayne: DFID provides support for women affected by sexual violence and rape, including referrals to specialist centres, but it is part of a wider package of assistance which is not recorded in this way.

Developing Countries: Females

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what policies and programmes her Department has to tackle female genital mutilation and early forced marriage; and what progress has been made in this area following the Prime Minister's Girl Summit held in July 2014. [207136]

Lynne Featherstone: The UK is the biggest international donor to efforts tackling female genital mutilation, investing up to £35 million over 5 years. This funding enables three strands of work. First, work directly within local communities and governments to back action to end FGM in 15 countries. Secondly, research into the most cost-effective approaches to ending FGM, to make sure our work has the maximum impact, and thirdly social change communications and support to UK based diaspora groups for efforts to end the practice in their countries of origin.

At Girl Summit 2014, the Secretary of State for International Development announced a new commitment of up to £25 million for a UN multi-country programme to end child, early and forced marriage in 12 countries, and an investment of £31 million to generate new evidence on what works to transform lives of poor adolescent girls. DFID is also exploring new mechanisms to support civil society addressing FGM and CEFM.

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DFID is driving forward its work on both of these important agendas. In parallel, we are building on the achievements of the Girl Summit, which included support from over 450 governments, organisations and individuals for a Charter that called to an end to FGM and CEFM, 12,000 social media pledges for this cause, and over 130 policy commitments contributing towards this objective. DFID is working to maintain this international momentum by calling for more signatories to the charter, delivery of the commitments that were made and further action to end these practices.

EU Law

Mr Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many new EU directives and regulations have been transposed into UK law by her Department since May 2010. [207263]

Lynne Featherstone: There have been no new EU directives or regulations transposed into UK law by my Department since May 2010.

Gambia

Alec Shelbrooke: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what steps her Department is taking to ensure vulnerable people in Gambia are not affected by the decision of the EU to suspend aid to that country; [207272]

(2) what steps her Department is taking to ensure that vulnerable people in Gambia are not affected by deteriorating conditions as a result of the suspension of aid and human rights violations. [207416]

Lynne Featherstone: The EU, with UK support, is seeking to persuade the Gambian Government to improve the human rights situation through its regular political dialogue under the Cotonou Agreement. The release of EU development funds are linked to these discussions.

International Citizen Service: South East

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many young people are involved in the International Citizens Service in (a) Brighton and Hove, (b) East Sussex and (c) South East England; and if she will make a statement. [207139]

Lynne Featherstone: As of 31 August 2014 more than 5,600 UK volunteers had started an International Citizen Service placement. This includes, following the pilot phase, 85 volunteers from Brighton and Hove, 139 from East Sussex (including Brighton and Hove) and 708 from the South East including East Sussex.

Statistics on participating UK volunteers, by age and by region are published annually

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/international-citizen-service-ics-volunteer-statistics-2013-2014

Nepal

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment she has made of the effects on her Department's aid programme in Nepal of the formation of the new government in that country. [207089]

Mr Swayne: As part of the new planning cycle for the Department for International Development my office

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in Nepal has made a thorough assessment of the expected effects on the Department’s aid programme of the formation of the new government following elections in November 2013.

Accordingly we have shifted our aid programme towards creating the enabling environment for inclusive economic growth including an increased focus on jobs, infrastructure and local development, strengthening effective government including public financial management and anti-corruption measures, and continuing to strengthen the quality and targeting of service delivery. We have increased our focus on mitigating the risks of climate change and inequality so that economic and social gains are safeguarded.

Palestinians

Sarah Champion: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will increase financial aid for Palestine. [206867]

Mr Swayne: DFID is providing nearly £350 million from 2011-15 to address a broad range of Palestinian development aid since the current conflict began. We keep the level of our funding under constant review.

Sarah Newton: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what humanitarian and medical support the Government is providing to the population of Gaza. [207241]

Mr Swayne: The UK is one of the biggest donors to the Gaza crisis, providing more than £17 million in emergency assistance since the beginning of the crisis. DFID is providing essential supplies to thousands of families, helping to repair water infrastructure, deliver emergency medical services, protect the civilian population and deal with food shortages.

St Helena

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what estimate she has made of (a) the current cost of transporting a container of goods to St Helena and (b) the future cost of transporting a container of goods after the RMS St Helena has been decommissioned. [206992]

Mr Swayne: Costs of transportation depend on volume and place of origin. Expressions of interest for ocean freight services are currently being reviewed by the Saint Helena Government.

Telephone Services

Valerie Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development under what timetable her Department plans to phase out use of telephone lines with the prefix (a) 0845, 0844 and 0843 in accordance with the Cabinet Office guidance on customer service lines published in December 2013 and (b) 03 and 08, where 03 is the primary number under a dual numbering system. [207287]

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Mr Swayne: DFID will phase out 0845 numbers next month. A 0300 number will be available from mid-September 2014, the 0845 number will be decommissioned by end of 2014.

Television

Mr Bradshaw: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much her Department spent on the purchase of televisions in (a) 2013 and (b) 2014 to date. [207219]

Mr Swayne: DFID spent £832.97 on purchasing televisions in 2013; no televisions have been purchased in 2014 to date.

Turks and Caicos Islands

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment she has made of the social and environmental effect of conditions imposed on UK Government loans to the Turks and Caicos government. [206996]

Mr Swayne: The Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) are not in receipt of a loan from the UK Government.

West Africa

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps her Department has taken to combat the spread of Ebola in the last four months. [207880]

Lynne Featherstone: The current outbreak of Ebola poses a serious public health risk to West Africa and is

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deeply concerning. The UK is taking a leading role in working with the countries affected and with the international community to ensure that the outbreak is contained and help reaches those in need. In total, over £25 million of British funding is supporting the global effort to contain this disease. This includes £5 million of new direct funding to help partners working on the ground like the WHO, Red Cross and Médecins Sans Frontières? to treat victims and prevent the spread of Ebola in West Africa. Over £20 million of UK support is helping contain Ebola through commitments to multilateral institutions (the World Bank and the African Development Bank) and the EU.

Health

Ambulance Services: East Midlands

Andrew Bingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many ambulance calls from (a) the East Midlands and (b) High Peak constituency were responded to in each of the last five years; [207319]

(2) what proportion of ambulances in (a) the East Midlands and (b) High Peak constituency failed to respond within their targeted response times in each of the last five years. [207318]

Jane Ellison: Information is not available in the format requested.

Information on the number of ambulance calls receiving an emergency response from the East Midlands Ambulance Service NHS Trust, and the proportion of those that were responded to within the standard response time, for the last five years, is shown in the following table:

 Category A calls resulting in an ambulance arrivingArriving within 19 minutes (95% standard)Category A calls resulting in an emergency responseResponded to within 8 minutes (75% standard)
 ThousandThousandPercentageThousandThousandPercentage

2009-101

186.5

180.1

96.5

186.6

137.6

73.7

2010-111

205.0

191.8

93.5

205.2

148.6

72.4

2011-12

222.0

204.9

92.3

222.4

167.1

75.2

2012-13

234.1

215.0

91.9

37.0 2April to May 2012

28.3 2April to May 2012

76.4 2April to May 2012

2013-14

245.2

230.0

93.8

n/a

n/a

n/a

 Red 1 calls resulting in an emergency responseResponded to within 8 minutes (75% standard)Red 2 calls resulting in an emergency responseResponded to within 8 minutes (75% standard)
 ThousandThousandPercentageThousandThousandPercentage

2009-101

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

2010-111

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

2011-12

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

2012-13

19.1 2June 2012 to March 2013

13.4 2June 2012 to March 2013

70.0% 2June 2012 to March 2013

178.4 2June 2012 to March 2013

134.7 2June 2012 to March 2013

75.5% 2June 2012 to March 2013

2013-14

19.4

13.8

71.3

226.1

161.5

71.4

n/a: Not available. 1 Before April 2011, data were collected annually by the Health and Social Care Information Centre in the KA34 Ambulance Statistics, and are not necessarily consistent with later data supplied to NHS England. 2 From June 2012 Category A calls were split into Red 1 (most serious/time critical) and Red 2 (serious but less time critical). It is not possible to compare Red 1 and Red 2 data from June 2012 onwards with earlier years due to different clock start times. Sources: 1. 2009-10 and 2010-11: Health and Social Care Information Centre. 2. 2011-12 onwards: NHS England Ambulance Quality Indicators.