HC Deb 25 July 1986 vol 102 c703W
Mr. Austin Mitchell

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will bring up to date the information given in reply to the hon. Member for Great Grimsby on 24 February and 17 March 1982, Official Report, columns 414 and 129, concerning a bonus for the long-term unemployed.

Mr. Newton

The information in relation to the long-term unemployed is given in the table. The number of unemployed persons represents those who were in receipt of unemployment or supplementary benefit in Great Britain in November 1985, the latest date for which figures are available. The cost is based on a weekly bonus for the unemployed of £40.50.

Duration of unemployment Unemployed Persons Number of weeks bonus per person Cost £ million
Between 1 and 2 years 384,900 4 62.4
Between 2 and 3 years 228,200 8 73.9
Over 3 years* 431,600 12 209.8
Total 1,044,700 346.1
* These numbers cannot be further split.

The cost of providing a bonus equal to two weeks' benefit for all social security beneficiaries in 1986–87 is £1,400 million. This is based on the total estimated social security expenditure in 1986–87 excluding housing benefit and all one-off payments (Christmas bonus, maternity grant, death grant and single payments of supplementary benefit).