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Written Question
Children's Rights: International Cooperation
Tuesday 13th February 2024

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office:

To ask His Majesty's Government what steps take they are taking with international partners to promote the rights of children of incarcerated parents around the world in accordance with article 9 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Answered by Lord Benyon - Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

The FCDO is committed to the promotion, protection and realisation of children's rights and to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). We regularly advocate for and uphold the UNCRC in international fora, most recently at the 53rd Session of the HRC where the UK co-sponsored a resolution on preventing and responding to all forms of violence against women and girls in criminal justice detention.

Children are also a central part of FCDO's work to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, through investing in children and ensuring access to quality education and health care, and through protecting them from violence and advocating for a child rights approach to tackle all forms of child labour. We work closely with UNICEF, other multilateral organisations and partners across the development system to further children's rights.


Written Question
Prison Sentences
Tuesday 30th January 2024

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government how many people serving an extended determinate sentence are (1) in the first two-thirds of their custodial term and not yet eligible for parole, (2) in the final third of their custodial term having been refused release by the Parole Board, (3) in prison having been recalled in the final third of their custodial term, (4) in prison having been recalled during their extended licence period, (5) on licence in the final third of their custodial term, and (6) on licence in their extended licence period.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

The answer to parts (1) and (2) are as follows:

Table 1: Number of prisoners serving an extended determinate sentence who are in the first two-thirds of their custodial term, as at end of September 2023, in England and Wales

Number of offenders
in the first two-thirds
of their custodial term

6,035

Table 2: Number of prisoners serving an extended determinate sentence who are in the final third of their custodial term, as at end of September 2023, in England and Wales

Number of offenders
in the final third of
their custodial term

1,740

Data sources and quality
The figures in these tables have been drawn from administrative IT systems which, as with any large scale recording system, are subject to possible errors with data entry and processing.

Notes
There were also an additional 3 extended determinate sentence prisoners (as at 30 Sep 2023) without a recorded sentence length, and so they could not be included in the above tables.

Table 2 does not include any information on whether the individuals were rejected for release by the Parole Board, as this could only be included at disproportionate cost due to the need to link data held across different data systems.

Source: Prison NOMIS
PQ_HL-1621 (Ministry of Justice; Data and Analysis (Directorate))

Parts (3), (4), (5) and (6) could only be obtained at disproportionate cost due to the need to link data held across different data systems.


Written Question
Prisoners' Release
Tuesday 30th January 2024

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government, in each year since 2015, how many people serving an extended determinate sentence were released (1) after their first Parole Board hearing, (2) after a subsequent Parole Board hearing, and (3) after serving their full custodial term.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

The information requested could only be obtained at disproportionate cost due to the need to link data held across different data systems.


Written Question
Prisoners' Release
Thursday 25th January 2024

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government what is the (1) mean, and (2) median, number of months that prisoners serving an extended determinate sentence spent in prison beyond their parole eligibility date, in each of the last five years.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

The information requested could only be obtained at disproportionate cost. Centrally collated prisons releases data held by the department do not include Parole Eligibility Dates (PED), as such, we are not able to calculate the time post-PED at point of release. The question’s reference to ‘months spent’ relates to those who have since been released, so bringing all the required data together would exceed costs.


Written Question
Prisoners: Mental Health Services
Wednesday 24th January 2024

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government how many applications for transfer from prison to hospital were decided (1) within the target timescales set by the HM Prison and Probation Service Mental Health Casework Section, and (2) outside the target timescales; and of those transfers decided outside of the target timescales, what was the average length of delay, in each of the last five years.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

In August 2019 and following consultation with stakeholders, the Mental Health Casework Section (MHCS) of HM Prison and Probation Service introduced a target of five calendar days to authorise a warrant to transfer prisoners from prison to hospital under the Mental Health Act 1983. A transfer may be authorised only when two medical reports and all other relevant information is received as required under the statutory criteria set out in section 47 (for sentenced prisoners) and section 48 (unsentenced prisoners, civil prisoners and immigration detainees) of the Mental Health Act 1983.

The information requested can be found in the tables below. We have not disclosed for 2019 as to do so would be at a disproportionate cost. In addition, we have not disclosed for 2023 as the information requested is a subset of transfer data that we are scheduled to publish on 25 April 2024.

Table 1. Applications for Transfer Decided within Target

Year

2020

2021

2022

Cases completed within target (5 days)

893

1005

975

Cases completed outside target (5 days)

81

63

54

Proportion of completed cases concluded within target

92%

94%

95%

Table 2. Average (median) delay days for authorized applications

2020

2021

2022

Average (median) number of days above the target (5 days) to authorise a prisoner transfer warrant for cases completed outside target

10

6

8

Notes:

1. Applications authorized within 5 days are within target.

2. Average is based on completed/authorized cases.

Data sources and quality

We have drawn the figures in these tables from the Public Protection Unit Database (PPUD). As is common with figures from large scale recording systems, figures in these tables are subject to data entry and processing errors. As a result, these numbers are subject to revision as more data become available.


Written Question
Mental Health Services: Prisoners
Wednesday 17th January 2024

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Department of Health and Social Care:

To ask His Majesty's Government how many people entering prison underwent reception screening for mental health issues; and how many of these were undertaken by a person with a recognised mental health qualification, in each of the last five years.

Answered by Lord Markham - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)

Everyone coming into prison either from courts or transfer from another prison or on remission from a psychiatric unit receives the first reception screening. This screening is based on National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidelines and includes questions on a person’s mental health. The clinicians undertaking the initial reception screening could be either a general nurse or a mental health nurse. We do not have the breakdown of those that undertake reception screenings when seeing prisoners and their qualifications.

Any patient that requires further support or investigations for physical or mental health conditions is appropriately referred on to the relevant team. It is important to note that the initial health screen on reception is to keep people safe in the first few days. A more comprehensive second screening is undertaken within seven days of arrival.


Written Question
Remand in Custody: Women
Tuesday 21st November 2023

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government what percentage of women remanded into custody in each of the past five years subsequently received a custodial sentence of (1) one year and over, (2) six months to one year, (3) three to six months, (4) one to three months, and (5) less than one month.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

The Ministry of Justice holds data on sentence outcomes and custodial sentence lengths after being remanded in custody. Data for the last five years is publicly available and can be viewed in remands data tool, available via the following link: Criminal Justice System statistics quarterly: December 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

To view data relating to cases completed at magistrates’ courts, navigate to the ‘Magistrates’ Courts’ tab. To view data relating to cases completed at Crown courts, navigate to the ‘Crown Courts’ tab.

To select data for cases where the defendant is known to be female, ’01: Female’ should be selected within the Sex filter. To see data for cases where the female is aged over 18, select ‘02: Young adults’ and ’03: Adults’ in the Age group filter. To view those remanded in custody, ’03: Custody’ should be selected within the Remand status at magistrates’ court and Remand status at the Crown Court filters on the appropriate tabs.

Table 1: Proportion of women issued a custodial sentence, community sentence, other sentence, or no sentence, after being remanded in custody, in cases completed at all courts in England and Wales, between 2018 and 2022 (Note 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

Outcome

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

Immediate custody

50%

50%

49%

47%

44%

Community sentence

9%

10%

8%

9%

9%

Other

18%

17%

19%

18%

20%

No sentence

23%

23%

24%

26%

28%

Source: Court Proceedings Database

Table 2: Proportion of women issued a custodial sentence after being remanded in custody, by custodial sentence length, in cases completed at all courts in England and Wales, between 2018 and 2022. (Note 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

Custodial sentence length

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

1 year and over

24%

26%

26%

28%

27%

6 months and up to 1 year

5%

5%

5%

5%

5%

Over 3 months and up to 6 months

5%

5%

6%

4%

4%

Over 1 month and up to and including 3 months

9%

8%

8%

6%

5%

Up to and including 1 month

7%

6%

5%

4%

3%

N/A (received other sentence type or not sentenced)

50%

50%

51%

53%

56%

Source: Court Proceedings Database

Notes:

1) Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.

2) The figures given in the table relate to defendants for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences it is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.

3) Defendants are reported against their principal (i.e. most serious) remand status. Court custody includes those remanded in custody at any stage of proceedings who may also have been given bail or not remanded at some stage of those proceedings.

4) 'To obtain percentages for cases completed at both magistrates' and Crown courts, cases where a defendant has failed to appear to their hearing have been excluded from the totals. This can be replicated within the remand tool, by deselecting '01: Failure to appear' in the Outcome filter within the Magistrates' Court tab.

5) Defendants proceeded against at magistrates’ courts and subsequently committed to the Crown Court will have separate remand decisions made in both courts and will be included in both totals. To avoid duplication of figures, those committed to trial/sentence at Crown court following a hearing at magistrates' courts have been removed from the totals. This can be replicated within the remand tool, by deselecting '03: Committed to Crown Court for trial/sentencing' in the Outcome filters within the Magistrates' Court and Crown Courts tabs.

6) Please note, an issue we are currently investigating is the high proportion of unknown remand status at Crown Court – early findings suggest that these cases are split broadly proportionally (to offence breakdowns) across those remanded at custody and those granted bail. In 2022, 24% of defendants remanded at Crown Court had unknown remand status. We are working on a solution to fill in those unknown remand statuses with the actual status. Due to this, the figures presented only includes data for those where remand status is known.

7) The figures given in the table relate to those where sex is known to be female and age is known to be 18 or over.

8) An outcome of 'no sentence' includes cases where proceedings are discontinued, withdrawn, dismissed, or discharged Sec 6 at magistrates' courts, and not tried or acquitted at Crown Court.

9) The figures given in the table under outcome 'Other' relate to cases where the offender has been received a suspended sentence, absolute/conditional discharge, sentenced to pay a fine or compensation, or has been otherwise dealt with.


Written Question
Remand in Custody: Women
Tuesday 21st November 2023

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government what percentage of women remanded into custody in each of the past five years  subsequently received no sentence.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

The Ministry of Justice holds data on sentence outcomes and custodial sentence lengths after being remanded in custody. Data for the last five years is publicly available and can be viewed in remands data tool, available via the following link: Criminal Justice System statistics quarterly: December 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

To view data relating to cases completed at magistrates’ courts, navigate to the ‘Magistrates’ Courts’ tab. To view data relating to cases completed at Crown courts, navigate to the ‘Crown Courts’ tab.

To select data for cases where the defendant is known to be female, ’01: Female’ should be selected within the Sex filter. To see data for cases where the female is aged over 18, select ‘02: Young adults’ and ’03: Adults’ in the Age group filter. To view those remanded in custody, ’03: Custody’ should be selected within the Remand status at magistrates’ court and Remand status at the Crown Court filters on the appropriate tabs.

Table 1: Proportion of women issued a custodial sentence, community sentence, other sentence, or no sentence, after being remanded in custody, in cases completed at all courts in England and Wales, between 2018 and 2022 (Note 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

Outcome

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

Immediate custody

50%

50%

49%

47%

44%

Community sentence

9%

10%

8%

9%

9%

Other

18%

17%

19%

18%

20%

No sentence

23%

23%

24%

26%

28%

Source: Court Proceedings Database

Table 2: Proportion of women issued a custodial sentence after being remanded in custody, by custodial sentence length, in cases completed at all courts in England and Wales, between 2018 and 2022. (Note 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

Custodial sentence length

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

1 year and over

24%

26%

26%

28%

27%

6 months and up to 1 year

5%

5%

5%

5%

5%

Over 3 months and up to 6 months

5%

5%

6%

4%

4%

Over 1 month and up to and including 3 months

9%

8%

8%

6%

5%

Up to and including 1 month

7%

6%

5%

4%

3%

N/A (received other sentence type or not sentenced)

50%

50%

51%

53%

56%

Source: Court Proceedings Database

Notes:

1) Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.

2) The figures given in the table relate to defendants for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences it is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.

3) Defendants are reported against their principal (i.e. most serious) remand status. Court custody includes those remanded in custody at any stage of proceedings who may also have been given bail or not remanded at some stage of those proceedings.

4) 'To obtain percentages for cases completed at both magistrates' and Crown courts, cases where a defendant has failed to appear to their hearing have been excluded from the totals. This can be replicated within the remand tool, by deselecting '01: Failure to appear' in the Outcome filter within the Magistrates' Court tab.

5) Defendants proceeded against at magistrates’ courts and subsequently committed to the Crown Court will have separate remand decisions made in both courts and will be included in both totals. To avoid duplication of figures, those committed to trial/sentence at Crown court following a hearing at magistrates' courts have been removed from the totals. This can be replicated within the remand tool, by deselecting '03: Committed to Crown Court for trial/sentencing' in the Outcome filters within the Magistrates' Court and Crown Courts tabs.

6) Please note, an issue we are currently investigating is the high proportion of unknown remand status at Crown Court – early findings suggest that these cases are split broadly proportionally (to offence breakdowns) across those remanded at custody and those granted bail. In 2022, 24% of defendants remanded at Crown Court had unknown remand status. We are working on a solution to fill in those unknown remand statuses with the actual status. Due to this, the figures presented only includes data for those where remand status is known.

7) The figures given in the table relate to those where sex is known to be female and age is known to be 18 or over.

8) An outcome of 'no sentence' includes cases where proceedings are discontinued, withdrawn, dismissed, or discharged Sec 6 at magistrates' courts, and not tried or acquitted at Crown Court.

9) The figures given in the table under outcome 'Other' relate to cases where the offender has been received a suspended sentence, absolute/conditional discharge, sentenced to pay a fine or compensation, or has been otherwise dealt with.


Written Question
Remand in Custody: Women
Tuesday 21st November 2023

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government what percentage of women remanded into custody in each of the past five years were subsequently sentenced to (1) a community sentence, and (2) a prison sentence.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

The Ministry of Justice holds data on sentence outcomes and custodial sentence lengths after being remanded in custody. Data for the last five years is publicly available and can be viewed in remands data tool, available via the following link: Criminal Justice System statistics quarterly: December 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

To view data relating to cases completed at magistrates’ courts, navigate to the ‘Magistrates’ Courts’ tab. To view data relating to cases completed at Crown courts, navigate to the ‘Crown Courts’ tab.

To select data for cases where the defendant is known to be female, ’01: Female’ should be selected within the Sex filter. To see data for cases where the female is aged over 18, select ‘02: Young adults’ and ’03: Adults’ in the Age group filter. To view those remanded in custody, ’03: Custody’ should be selected within the Remand status at magistrates’ court and Remand status at the Crown Court filters on the appropriate tabs.

Table 1: Proportion of women issued a custodial sentence, community sentence, other sentence, or no sentence, after being remanded in custody, in cases completed at all courts in England and Wales, between 2018 and 2022 (Note 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

Outcome

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

Immediate custody

50%

50%

49%

47%

44%

Community sentence

9%

10%

8%

9%

9%

Other

18%

17%

19%

18%

20%

No sentence

23%

23%

24%

26%

28%

Source: Court Proceedings Database

Table 2: Proportion of women issued a custodial sentence after being remanded in custody, by custodial sentence length, in cases completed at all courts in England and Wales, between 2018 and 2022. (Note 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

Custodial sentence length

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

1 year and over

24%

26%

26%

28%

27%

6 months and up to 1 year

5%

5%

5%

5%

5%

Over 3 months and up to 6 months

5%

5%

6%

4%

4%

Over 1 month and up to and including 3 months

9%

8%

8%

6%

5%

Up to and including 1 month

7%

6%

5%

4%

3%

N/A (received other sentence type or not sentenced)

50%

50%

51%

53%

56%

Source: Court Proceedings Database

Notes:

1) Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.

2) The figures given in the table relate to defendants for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences it is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.

3) Defendants are reported against their principal (i.e. most serious) remand status. Court custody includes those remanded in custody at any stage of proceedings who may also have been given bail or not remanded at some stage of those proceedings.

4) 'To obtain percentages for cases completed at both magistrates' and Crown courts, cases where a defendant has failed to appear to their hearing have been excluded from the totals. This can be replicated within the remand tool, by deselecting '01: Failure to appear' in the Outcome filter within the Magistrates' Court tab.

5) Defendants proceeded against at magistrates’ courts and subsequently committed to the Crown Court will have separate remand decisions made in both courts and will be included in both totals. To avoid duplication of figures, those committed to trial/sentence at Crown court following a hearing at magistrates' courts have been removed from the totals. This can be replicated within the remand tool, by deselecting '03: Committed to Crown Court for trial/sentencing' in the Outcome filters within the Magistrates' Court and Crown Courts tabs.

6) Please note, an issue we are currently investigating is the high proportion of unknown remand status at Crown Court – early findings suggest that these cases are split broadly proportionally (to offence breakdowns) across those remanded at custody and those granted bail. In 2022, 24% of defendants remanded at Crown Court had unknown remand status. We are working on a solution to fill in those unknown remand statuses with the actual status. Due to this, the figures presented only includes data for those where remand status is known.

7) The figures given in the table relate to those where sex is known to be female and age is known to be 18 or over.

8) An outcome of 'no sentence' includes cases where proceedings are discontinued, withdrawn, dismissed, or discharged Sec 6 at magistrates' courts, and not tried or acquitted at Crown Court.

9) The figures given in the table under outcome 'Other' relate to cases where the offender has been received a suspended sentence, absolute/conditional discharge, sentenced to pay a fine or compensation, or has been otherwise dealt with.


Written Question
Prisons: Pepper Spray
Thursday 26th October 2023

Asked by: Lord Bradley (Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government how many times PAVA spray has been (1) drawn, and (2) drawn and deployed, in prisons in England and Wales since 1 April 2019.

Answered by Lord Bellamy - Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member.