HC Deb 30 March 1979 vol 965 cc398-400W
Mr. Rooker

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list in the Official Report (a) the numbers of families with one, two, three, four or more children, respectively, with income below, at and above 140 per cent, of their supplementary benefit level, (b) how many of the families were in or out of work, and what were (c) the total numbers of families with one, two, three or four or more children in Great Britain at the latest date for which figures ate available.

Mr. Orme

, pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 15 March 1979; Vol. 964, c. 283], gave the following information:

Great Britain
Income below supplementary benefit level Receiving supplementary benefit Income between supplementary benefit level and 140 per cent. of that level Income at and above 140 per cent of supplementary benefit level
Families with In work Out of work In work Out of work In work Out of work Total
One child 60,000 [30,000] 190,000 190,000 50,000 2,260,000 60,000 2,840,000
Two children 50,000 [20,000] 140,000 360,000 [30,000] 2,250,000 80,000 2,930,000
Three children [40,000] [10,000] 70,000 220,000 [20,000] 720,000 50,000 1,113,000
Four or more children [30,000] 60,000 140,000 [20,000] 220,000 [10,000] 480,000
All families 170,000 [60,000] 460,000 910,000 120,000 5,460,000 200,000 7,380,000
Notes to Table:
1. All figures are rounded to the nearest 10,000. Consequently, the sum of the component parts may not equal the total.
2. The estimates, with the exception of those in the column headed"Receiving supplementary benefit ", are based on an analysis by the Department of Health and Social Security of incomes and other information recorded by respondents to the family expenditure survey (FES) for 1976. The estimates of the numbers of families receiving supplementary benefit are based on a sample count. All the estimates are subject to sampling error; those figures in square brackets are subject to very considerable proportionate sampling error.
3. The FES estimates relate only to the population living in private households; families and persons in institutions are not sampled in the FES.
4. The supplementary benefit level is taken as being the supplementary benefit scale rate appropriate to the family using the long-term rates for pensioners only. Income refers to net income, less net housing costs and work expenses where appropriate.
5. The comparison is based on the family's normal income in the normal employment of the family head. For example, where the head of the family had been off work due to sickness or unemployment for less than three months at the time of the survey, the family's normal income when the head was at work was used in determining the level of income.
6. The estimates of numbers of families with income below the supplementary benefit level do not indicate unclaimed entitlement to supplementary benefit. For example, those who are in full-time work or undertaking full-time further education would not normally have entitlement to supplementary benefit; for others not precluded from claiming, no regard is had in these estimates to factors such as disregarded income, treatment of capital or exceptional circumstances additions, each of which can affect payment of supplementary benefit.
7. Separate estimates of families with apparent unclaimed entitlement to supplementary benefit are now made annually. Those for 1976 were published in the Annual Report of the Supplementary Benefits Commission for 1977—Cmnd. 7392.