§ Mrs. Dunwoody
asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make the gathering of information on ethnic origins compulsory, and publish the percentage of entrants to his Department who failed to respond to the ethnic origins questionnaire.
§ Mr. Nicholas Edwards
Surveys of the ethnic origin of new entrants to my Department have been carried out in agreement with the Council of Civil Service Unions, on the basis of voluntary self-classification. There are no plans at present to change to a compulsory system. However, the Civil Service and the Council of Civil Service Unions are keen to improve the data base, and are discussing practical ways in which this can be done.
The response rate in the existing new entrant survey in my Department is 100 per cent.