HC Deb 31 October 2002 vol 391 cc941-2W
Mrs Ellman

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the findings of the investigation into the Criminal Records Bureau; and what changes he proposes to implement.[75019]

Hilary Benn

In early September the Home Secretary appointed an independent team to review the situation at the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB). The review is continuing. The main focus of the team's work centres on what needs to be done to ensure the medium and long-term success of the service. They are taking a fundamental look at all aspects of the CRB's operation and will report to the Home Secretary in due course.

Damian Green

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what his latest estimate is of the time for each Criminal Records Bureau check on (a) teachers and (b) classroom assistants in England and Wales; [74349]

(2) what his latest estimate is of the time taken for each Criminal Records Bureau check on childminder applicants in England and Wales. [74346]

Hilary Benn

[holding answer 15 October 2002]: The estimated average turnaround of checks processed by the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) remains at approximately six weeks. This is measured from the point at which a correctly completed form is received by CRB, accompanied by all relevant supporting details. No distinction is made in relation to the profession of an applicant. They are all subject to the same level of service.

Matthew Taylor

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what penalties have been incurred by Capita on the Criminal Records Bureau contract; and if he will make a statement. [74123]

Asylum applications received in the United Kindom, and initial decisions, excluding dependants, Cameroon, January 2000 to June 20001,2
Initial Decisions Total applications3 Total initial decisions Initial Decisions Cases considered under normal procedures4 Cases considered under backlog clearance exercise5
Total Grants of asylum (percentage) Grants of ELR Refusals Total Grants of asylum or ELR Refusals6
2000 355 285 260 8 3 89 25 96 4
2001p 370 565 556 9 5 87 - - -
January to June 2002p 280 265 265 7 9 85 - - -
1 Figures (other than percentages) rounded to the nearest five. 2 Decision figures do not necessarily relate to applications received in the same period Information is of initial decisions, excluding the outcome of appeals or other subsequent decisions. 3 May exclude some cases lodged at Local Enforcement Offices between January and March 2000. 4Cases considered under the normal procedures may include some cases decided under the backlog criteria. 5 Case decided under measures aimed at reducing the pre 1996 asylum application backlog. 6 Includes some cases where the application has been refused on substantive grounds. P Provisional data.

Hilary Benn

There is provision for penalties for delay or poor performance. Liquidated damages have been incurred by Capita for delay although the details remain commercial in confidence and cannot be divulged. The main priority is for the Criminal Records Bureau and Capita to collaborate in order to achieve further improvement in the quality of service.