§ Mr. Sheerman
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what action his Department is taking to improve employment prospects for ex-offenders.
§ Mr. John Patten
[holding answer 22 February 1989]: The Home Office has issued advice to prison establishments and to the probation service about employment training and its relevance to offenders and ex-offenders. Prison officers in several establishments are receiving special training and support to enable them to provide employment guidance to inmates. It is intended that the vocational training currently provided within prison establishments should be expanded in line with the Government's policy initiative on the competence-based and work-related national vocational qualifications. Advice is currently being offered to prisoners by prison education departments and through pre-release schemes and post-release counselling on opportunities to continue
Reported8 fatalities in the construction industry9 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Date of accident Falls of persons1 Falls of materials2 Work in excavations3 Transport4 Electricity Cranes5 Hoists6 Others Total Employees 1960 154 29 17 28 14 1010 2 24 278 1961 129 40 13 28 12 1021 — 29 272 1962 152 38 19 30 12 1010 1 19 281
skills training following release. Long-term prisoners who are coming near the end of their sentences may apply for temporary release, living in a pre-release employment scheme hostel and working for local employers.
The Home Office after-care grant scheme contributes towards the central and administrative costs of the National Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders and the Apex Trust, organisations which are actively involved with the Training Agency to provide training and employment opportunities for ex-offenders. The Home Office also contributes to a number of other organisations which seek to place ex-offenders in employment as a regular part of their programme of rehabilitation and after-care.
The Home Office takes part in regular meetings with the Training Agency, Department of Employment, the probation service, voluntary organisations and others to co-ordinate initiatives for improving employment prospects for ex-offenders.