§ Mr. Frank Field
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list (a) the number of claimants of social security benefits and (b) the number of dependants in 1979 and at the latest available date and if he will calculate the extent to which the increase in unemployment since 1979 correlates with the increase in the number of claimants and dependants.
§ Mr. Major
[pursuant to the reply, 19 March 1986]: I regret it is not possible to provide the information in the form requested without a substantial element of over-counting because some people receive more than one benefit. However, the latest available information in respect of these benefits related solely to unemployment is as follows:320W
Date Number of recipients* Number of dependents*† Unemployment benefit only November 1979 386,600 158,500 November 1984 699,500 154,300 Unemployment benefit plus supplementary allowance November 1979 80,100 129,600 December 1983 205,500 351,500 Supplementary allowance only November 1979 435,700 382,000 December 1983 1,504,400 1,183,400 * Figures are rounded to the nearest 100 † Adults and children
Although no direct correlation is possible between these two sets of figures there is some indication of an upward trend in the number of unemployed without dependents.