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SOCIAL SECURITY STATISTICS 1997

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The 1997 edition of Social Security Statistics, published today by ...
The 1997 edition of Social Security Statistics, published today by

the Government Statistical Service, shows the numbers of people

receiving a wide range of benefits.

Some of the main points are:

Benefit Expenditure

Total Social Security expenditure in 1996/97 was£92,846m. Of this,

£42,337m was spent on contributory benefits and£50,509m on

non-contributory benefits. Expenditure on State Retirement Pensions

is the largest component at£32,023m.

Family Credit (Section A1)

The number of families in receipt of Family Credit increased to

725,300 at November 1996, from 648,700 a year before. The average

amount awarded rose from£54.80 to£56.92 per week over the same

period. The average gross earnings for all families in receipt of

Family Credit was£112.81.

PREPARED BY THE GOVERNMENT STATISTICAL SERVICE

Income Support (Section A2)

Between May 1995 and May 1996 the number of Income Support recipients

decreased by 121,000 to 5.5 million. Over the same period, the

average weekly payment increased from£55.56 to£57.04 per week. The

number of recipients claiming Income Support for two years or more

increased by 46,000 to over 3.3 million at May 1996. The number of

one parent families in receipt of Income Support was 1.14 million.

Housing Benefit (Section A3)

In February 1997, the number of Housing Benefit recipients totalled

4.7 million. Of these, 2.8 million were local authority tenants and

1.9 million were private or housing association tenants. Over the

year to May 1996, the average payment increased from

£39.60 to£41.58 per week.

Council Tax Benefit (Section A4)

In February 1997, the number of Council Tax Benefit recipients was

5.6 million. The average weekly payment in May 1996 was£7.28,

compared with£6.71 per week in May 1995.

Retirement Pension (Section B1)

The number of retirement pensioners rose to 10.56 million in

September 1996, compared with 10.43 million the previous September.

In September 1996, the average amount of pension in payment was

£70.79 per week for men and£51.82 per week for women.

Unemployment Benefit/Jobseeker's Allowance (Section B2)

The Number of recipients of Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) at November

1996 was 1.8 million. Of these, 1.3 million people were in receipt of

Income Based JSA, 0.3 million received Contributory JSA. A further

42,000 received both and 159,000 received neither.

PREPARED BY THE GOVERNMENT STATISTICAL SERVICE

Incapacity Benefit (Section D1)

In April 1996, the number claiming Incapacity Benefit was 2.4

million, a decrease of 33,000 on April 1995.

Attendance Allowance (Section E1)

The number of people in receipt of Attendance Allowance at February

1997 was 1.2 million, up 58,000 on the previous year.

Disability Living Allowance (Section E2)

The number of Disability Living Allowance recipients at February 1997

was 1.9 million, an increase of 165,000 on a year earlier.

War Pensions (Section F1)

The number of War Pensions in payment at the end of 1996 was 327,000,

an increase of 12,000 on a year earlier.

Child Benefit (Section G1)

The number of children attracting child benefit at 31 December 1996

was 12.7 million, an increase of 47,000 over the previous year.

The number of families receiving One Parent Benefit at 31 December

1996 was 1.7 million, an increase of 55,000 over the previous year.

Child Support Agency (Section G2)

The total number of 'live and assessed' cases on the Child Support

Computer System at May 1997 was 609,800 compared with 484,600 the

previous year. At May 1997, absent

PREPARED BY THE GOVERNMENT STATISTICAL SERVICE

parents with a full maintenance assessement working as an employee

had an average maintenance assessment of£38.99 per week; this

compares with£23.68 per week for the self employed.

Contributions (Section H1)

In 1995/96, National Insurance Fund receipts totalled£44,582m

compared with payments out of the fund of£44,134m.

Occupational and Personal Pensions (Section H2)

Total membership of contracted-out pension schemes in the United

Kingdom during 1994/95 was 14.0 million, of which 9.3 million were

members of contracted-out occupational pension schemes and 5.6

million were members of Appropriate Personal Pension schemes. 7.3

million people gained some entitlement to SERPS in the year.

Take-up of Benefits (Section H4)

In 1994/95 it is estimated that Income Support claimants received

between 88% and 92% of the monies that could have been claimed. On

the same basis, Housing Benefit take-up was estimated to be between

93% and 97%, Council Tax Benefit between 71% and 79%, and Family

Credit around 82%.

Appeals and Referrals (Section H5)

In the first six months of 1996, 52,100 social security appeals were

heard and a decision reached by the Independent Tribunal Service. The

proportion of of appeals decided in the claimant's favour was 38%,

down from 43% in 1995. The average time taken for the appeals process

from date of claim lodgement up to the point when a decision was

reached decreased from 33.4 weeks in 1995 to 25.7 weeks in 1996.

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