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Social Security Review

Volume 82: debated on Monday 1 July 1985

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services on what precise evidence he bases the statement in paragraph 1.28 of the Green Paper on "Reform of Social Security" that the number of pensioners is likely to rise by about four million over the next 50 years; and if he will make a statement.

The statement in paragraph 1.28 of volume 2 of the Green Paper is based on population projections prepared by the Government Actuary in consultation with the Registrars General for the report "Population Projections 1981 — 2021" published for the Government Statistical Service by HMSO in 1984. Full details of the way the projections were arrived at are given in this publication copies of which are in the Library.

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many losers and how many gainers there would be in each of the following categories of supplementary benefit claimants if each supplementary benefit claimant who is (a) over 60 years, (b) unemployed, (c) a single parent, (d) long-term sick or disabled or (e) caring for the sick or disabled, had his or her requirements assessed at the average for that category; what in each case would be the average gain and the average loss; and what in each case would be the maximum gain and the maximum loss.

[pursuant to his reply, 12 June 1985, c. 486–87]: The analysis requested is not available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. Claimants' entitlement is built up from the present systems of scale rates and additional requirements.The present scale rates for single claimants who are householders in each of the categories are as follows:

Over 60 years35·70
Single parent*28·05
Sick and disabled†35·70
Caring for the sick and disabled
* Ordinary rate.
† Long term rate.
Any claimant might be entitled to an additional requirement if the qualifying conditions are satisfied. For average amount for each of the additional requirements, I refer the hon. Member to my hon. Friends reply to the hon. Member for Dunfermline, East (Mr. Brown) on 10 May at column

542 as amended in his pursuant reply of 26 June at column 434. For average amounts received by claimants with additional requirements, I refer the hon. Member to my hon. Friend's reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Hornchurch (Mr. Spicer) on 25 June at column 383–4.

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many householders will lose housing benefit completely as a result of the upratings announced in the House on 18 June.

[pursuant to his reply, 25 June 1985, c. 386]: It is estimated that 460,000 households will not receive rate rebate that they would otherwise have received following the proposed increase in the housing benefit rates taper above the needs allowance and the real improvement in the dependent child addition to the needs allowance this November. Of these, an estimated 340,000 will no longer receive any housing benefit.