HC Deb 12 May 2003 vol 405 cc64-5W
Mr. Paul Marsden

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what arrangements are made in his Department to allow staff to access counselling services. [111933]

Hilary Benn

The Home Office Health and Welfare Service provides independent, confidential and non-judgmental advice, information and counselling to all staff in the core Home Office, the Forensic Science Service and the UK Passport Service. In cases where further assistance is required staff can be referred to accredited specialist counsellors. The Prison Service Staff Care and Welfare provides a similar service to all staff in the Prison Service.

Employees may talk to their welfare officer about any concerns they may have, whether they are inside or outside the workplace. The service helps staff to deal with problems which may affect their performance or attendance and helps them to continue to remain effective at work.