§ Mr. Peter Robinson
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what percentage of average male earnings in Northern Ireland was represented by unemployment benefit for a man who had been out of work for two months and was married with two children in May 1979; and how this compares with May 1980, May 1981, May 1982 and May 1983.
§ Mr. Chris Patten
The information is as follows:
May Unemployment benefit as a percentage of average male earnings 1979 42.8 1980 41.3 1981 36.8 1982 26.8 1983 27.2
1. Earnings related supplement, which ceased to be payable on new claims from January 1982, is included in the calculations for 1979, 1980 and 1981.
2. The average earnings used in the calculations relate to earnings, including overtime earnings, in April of each year of male employees whose pay was not affected by absences from work. Figures for May are not available.
3. The percentages do not take account of supplementary benefit, the amount of which, if any, would have varied according to the circumstances of the individual case.