HC Deb 02 July 1982 vol 26 cc407-8W
Mr. Jim Callaghan

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what was the total cost in 1978, 1979, 1980 and 1981 of supplementary benefit.

Mr. Newton

Expenditure on supplementary benefit was as follows:

£ million
1978–79 2,017
1979–80 2,155
1980–81 2,859
1981–82 *4,843

Mr. Winnick

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many people of working age are now receiving supplementary benefit; if he will give the figures for May 1979, July 1980 and July 1981, respectively; and if he will also give the change in percentage terms for each of these years.

Mr. Newton

I regret that information is not available for the months requested. However, the numbers of people receiving supplementary allowance in May 1979, May 1980, May 1981 and February 1982—the latest available date—are as follows:

May May May February
1979 1980 1981 1982
Supplementary Allowance cases (millions) 1.2 1.2 1.6 2.2
Increase over previous year* 1 per cent 27 per cent 33 per cent.
* Note: The disparity between numbers in the table and the percentage is due to rounding.

Source: Quarterly Statistical Enquiry.