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Income Support

Volume 130: debated on Monday 21 March 1988

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To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what deadline has been established for the conversion of benefit payments to income support; what additional resources have been made available for this work at the local social security offices at Kingsbury road and St. Margaret's road in Birmingham; and whether he is satisfied that the deadline will be met.

The deadline for the conversion of supplementary benefit payments to income support is 11 April 1988. The offices each have nine posts in addition to their normal staffing for the conversion exercise. They have also been helped by a special team from the regional office. This team stayed at Kingsbury road office for three weeks and at St. Margaret's road for four weeks. Both offices are confident that they will complete the conversion by 11 April 1988.

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services whether an expectant mother who suspends a full-time course of study during her pregnancy will be entitled to income support.

If an expectant mother ceased to be a student, she would be eligible for income support. If she remained a student she would be eligible for income support during the summer vacation only and should look to an education grant for support at other times.