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Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer of 5 February 2008, Official Report, columns 1118-19W, on Prisoners: Personal Records, what records his Department holds on the average length of time taken for a prisoners full records to be received by the prison of destination following transfer. 
Maria Eagle: Information is not held centrally on the time it takes for these records to transfer from one prison to another, but the principle is that the form travels with the prisoners escorting officer and so the transfer should be immediate.
Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what research his Department has (a) commissioned and (b) undertaken on the relationship between prison regimes and reoffending rates; and if he will publish such research. 
Mr. Hanson: No specific research has been commissioned to investigate the relationship between aspects of prison regimes and reoffending. However, the latest available reoffending data, for the 2004 cohort of adult prisoners discharged from custody, show that reoffending decreased by 4.6 per cent. between 2000 and 2004 after controlling for changes in offender characteristics. Reoffending behaviour can be influenced by not just the programmes run in prisons, but the work of probation services and other partners once the offender has been released, as well as a wider range of socio-economic factors.
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people were employed in his Department's press office in each of the last five years; and how much it cost to run the office, including utilities and other expenses, in each year. 
Mr. Woodward: The number of people employed in Northern Ireland Information Service (NIIS), the Communications Directorate of the Northern Ireland Office, for each of the last five years is detailed in the following table.
|Press officers||Admin/support staff||Total|
These figures include staff salaries and all salary related costs including other expenditure incurred in pursuance of our overall objective of presenting and explaining Government policy in Northern Ireland by appropriately communicating the objectives of the NIO in a positive, timely, impartial and professional manner.
David T.C. Davies:
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many claims for discrimination, based on (a) sex, (b) race and (c) sexual orientation,
were brought by members of his Department and settled (i) in and (ii) out of court in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Woodward: Five cases brought against the Northern Ireland Office Core Department by its staff were settled during the time specified. Four cases were on grounds of sex, two in 2004-05, one in 2006-07 and one in 2007-08. There was one case on grounds of race in 2003-04. All cases were settled out of court. There were no cases during this period based on sexual orientation.
In accordance with section 75 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998, all personnel policies affecting staff are screened to ensure that they do not have an adverse effect on any of the nine groups specified under the legislation, which include gender, race and sexual orientation. In addition, NIO staff receive training on avoiding discriminatory behaviour in the workplace, including such behaviour on the basis of gender, race and sexual orientation. Until recently, this took the form of mandatory equal opportunities awareness training for new staff as part of their induction. This has been replaced by a new diversity course which is currently being rolled out to the whole Department.
| Source: Central Statistics Unit, Police Service of Northern Ireland.|
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