HC Deb 16 November 1971 vol 826 cc89-90W
Mr. Pardoe

asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will list all those benefits in cash or in kind for which his Department is wholly or partly responsible which are subject to a means test, the estimated number of people entitled to them, and the number of people who have claimed their entitlement.

Mr. Bryan

The Training Allowances Scheme for young people taking up employment with training away from home and the Professional Training Scheme for the disabled are the only two training schemes operated by the Department which are subject to financial need. The number of people entitled to apply under either of these schemes cannot be estimated.

During the year ended 30th September, 1971, applications were received under the Training Allowances Scheme from 291 young people, but figures are not readily available to show how many of these were found to be in financial need and granted assistance.

Courses under the Professional Training Scheme last up to 3 years, and currently there are 56 awards for full-time studies and two awards for part-time studies. Fifteen of the full-time awards are administered by the Department of Education and Science on behalf of this Department.

In addition, grants may be made to registered severely disabled people, (a) to provide special aids for employment, (b) to assist with excessive travel to work costs, (c) to help start a small business. Entitlement depends on individual circumstances. Average annual numbers and costs under each scheme are (a) 300 aids: £10,000; (b) 180 people each week: £29,000; (c) 10: £2,000.