To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many days of sick leave were taken by his Department's employees in each year since 1997.
Cabinet Office has introduced a revised format for reporting sickness absence statistics across the civil service. The new format was introduced at the end of March 2008 and the first report covers the calendar year 2007. It indicates 6.1 average working days lost per employee lost due to sickness.
Sickness absence data for the Department's predecessor, the Department of Trade and Industry, for 2006-07, 2005 and 2004, including the average number of days taken as sick leave, are published on the public civil service website:
http://www.civilservice.gov.uk/about/statistics/sickness.asp along with data for other Departments and agencies.
Earlier sickness data are not readily available and the cost of producing this would be disproportionate to the benefit to be derived.