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Economic Situation

Question for Ministry of Justice

UIN HL468, tabled on 6 June 2016

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by the Minister for Policing, Fire and Criminal Justice and Victims on 6 June (HC38271), how they have strengthened procedures as a result of this investigation.

Answered on

20 June 2016

This answer is a correction from the original answer.

As my Hon Friend, the Minister for Prisons, Probation and Rehabilitation announced on 14 March, we take these allegations of the type raised by the Mail on Sunday on 13 March extremely seriously and we launched an immediate investigation into them, which was conducted by a senior civil servant in the Cabinet Office's Proprietary and Ethics team. This investigation found no evidence of the Department’s intellectual property or confidential information being compromised as a result of staff leaving the Department to join TDPi. Neither did the investigation find any evidence of improper culture or general lack of professionalism in relation to how NOMS staff interact with suppliers or contractors.

The MoJ has clear rules and governance in place around the standards of conduct for current and former civil servants. All permanent civil servants are covered by the Cabinet Office's Business Appointment Rules. For employees below the Senior Civil Service grade, the rules expect an ex-employee to submit an application form within a year of them leaving office if their circumstances match one or more of the points set out at Section 13 of the Business Appointment Rules. Following the investigation, we have briefed all Human Resources managers and all staff at Senior Civil Service in NOMS about the procedures. The process has been strengthened so that we now circulate the procedures to senior managers annually. As my Rt. Hon Friend the Minister for Policing, Fire and Criminal Justice and Victims said in his answer of 6 June (HC38271), over the last six months, we have improved our commercial capability, more than doubling the senior commercial experts monitoring work with the private sector.

We have no plans to publish the letter to TDPi.

Original answer

As my Hon Friend, the Minister for Prisons, Probation and Rehabilitation announced on 14 March, we take these allegations of the type raised by the Mail on Sunday on 13 March extremely seriously and we launched an immediate investigation into them, which was conducted by a senior civil servant in the Cabinet Office's Proprietary and Ethics team. This investigation found no evidence of the Department’s intellectual property or confidential information being compromised as a result of staff leaving the Department to join TDPi. Neither did the investigation find any evidence of improper culture or general lack of professionalism in relation to how NOMS staff interact with suppliers or contractors.

The MoJ has clear rules and governance in place around the standards of conduct for current and former civil servants. All permanent civil servants are covered by the Cabinet Office's Business Appointment Rules. For employees below the Senior Civil Service grade, the rules expect an ex-employee to submit an application form within a year of them leaving office if their circumstances match one or more of the points set out at Section 13 of the Business Appointment Rules. Following the investigation, we have briefed all Human Resources managers and all staff at Senior Civil Service in NOMS about the procedures. The process has been strengthened that we now circulate the procedures to senior managers annually. As my Rt. Hon Friend the Minister for Policing, Fire and Criminal Justice and Victims said in his answer of 6 June (HC38271), over the last six months, we have improved our commercial capability, more than doubling the senior commercial experts monitoring work with the private sector.

We have no plans to publish the letter to TDPi.