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Welfare to Work

Volume 461: debated on Monday 4 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) how many face-to-face meetings David Freud held with outside bodies as part of the research for his review of the welfare system; (135122)

(2) if he will list the outside bodies consulted by David Freud during his review of the welfare system;

(3) whether David Freud invited written submissions from outside bodies as part of the research for his review of the welfare system.

During the preparation of his review, David Freud met a variety of external stakeholders, both in face to face meetings and in a seminar environment. He made clear in these discussions that he welcomed contributions. After publication of his report, at the international conference on 26 March 2007, the Secretary of State invited all stakeholders to send in their views to the Department.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many meetings David Freud had with (a) Ministers and (b) officials in his Department in preparing his review of the welfare system. (135173)

David Freud involved officials from across the Department in his review and informed Ministers of the progress of his review on eight occasions.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) if he will place in the Library copies of the documents provided to David Freud on the remit and scope of his review; (135178)

(2) what contribution was made by David Freud to decisions on the scope of his review of the welfare system; and if he will make a statement.

The terms of reference for David Freud’s review were published on 18 December 2006. They were

“to review progress on Welfare to Work programmes since 1997, taking account of evidence from the UK and international experience, and make recommendations on how the Government can build on its success in using policies such as the New Deal to continue to reduce inactivity and in-work poverty, and to help meet the Government’s 80 per cent employment aspiration.”

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will place in the Library a list of the information sources used by David Freud and his team in preparing his review of the welfare system. (135206)

In preparing his report, David Freud used information from a variety of sources, looking at both the UK and international welfare systems. Key information sources re referenced at the relevant points in his report, which has been placed in the Library.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what the total staffing budget available to David Freud for his review of the welfare system was; and what proportion of this budget was available to hire staff from outside his Department; (135220)

(2) how many staff (a) from his Department and (b) from outside his Department were involved in drafting the final report of David Freud’s review of the welfare system, broken down by job title and pay grade;

(3) what David Freud’s involvement was in selecting staff to work on his review of the welfare system; and if he will make a statement;

(4) how many civil servants from his Department worked on David Freud’s review of the welfare system, broken down by civil service grade.

David Freud involved officials from across the Department in his review and was supported by a secretariat of three officials on a full-time basis and two officials on a part-time basis. The breakdown by civil service grade is illustrated as follows.

Civil service grade

Full-time basis

Part-time basis

SCS PB1

1

1

Grade 7

1

1

EO

1

David Freud selected the Head of his Secretariat from two potential appointees put forward by the Department. The remaining members of the secretariat were assigned to the work by the Department.

No specific budget was allocated for the review. The costs of the staff that formed the secretariat for the review were borne within the Department’s overall staffing allocation.