HC Deb 12 April 1978 vol 947 cc411-2W
Mr. David Hunt

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many questionnaires, statistical inquiries or investigations have been carried out, either wholly or partly at public expense, on behalf of or by his Department or by any public bodies for which he is responsible in 1976, 1977 and in 1978 to date, specifying their nature and purpose and their estimated total cost.

Mr. Merlyn Rees

This information is not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. From the Home Office we request information from the police, prison, fire, probation and immigration services in connection with operational requirements.

Questionnaires addressed to companies and self-employed business people from the Home Office have included a twice-yearly inquiry, totalling approximately 1,200 forms a year to enable my Department to assess the United Kingdom consumption of drugs controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971; two quarterly and four annual inquiries, totalling approximately 9,500 forms a year, in respect of controlled drugs, the primary purpose of which is to meet obligations to the United Nations International Control Board; in 1976 three different questionnaires, totalling 150 forms, in respect of market research for prison industries; and 4,400 forms in respect of fires and fire protection in manufacturing premises.

Questionnaires addressed to individual persons or households in 1976 included 10 surveys in connection with community programmes. In addition, three surveys were carried out by the Community Relations Commission. In 1977, 1,200 forms were sent to individuals in a market research project undertaken, on behalf of the Home Office, to evaluate the effect of a fire publicity campaign.