HC Deb 26 May 1989 vol 153 cc752-3W
Mr. Dobson

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will place in the Library details of each major publicity campaign mounted by his Department in 1985–86 and each successive year, including in each case the objectives of the campaign, the intended audience and the outcome of the monitoring of the achievement of the intended objectives, and national research conducted for him by the Central Office of Information together with a note of the intended objectives in the campaigns in 1989–90.

Mr. Peter Lloyd

[holding answer 2 May 1989]: There has been only one major publicity campaign mounted by the Department since its separation from the Department of Health in July 1988. The objective of the campaign was to encourage take-up of family credit by working families with children. Initial research conducted at the outset is available in the Library. The campaign is still in progress until the end of June.

Prior to July 1988 campaigns were the responsibility of the Department of Health and Social Security. Major campaigns relating to social security subjects and their audience objectives in the period were:

Reform of Social Security advertising and publicity campaign January 1987—the £1,530,450 cost includes press advertising and the production and distribution of information packs. The objective was principally to reach professional advisers and carers to apply for information packs. The intended audience were professional advisers, carers and those concerned with general welfare schemes.

Family credit advertising campaign April 1988 to June 1988—the cost of £3,117,000 includes press and television. The objective was to promote take-up of the new family credit benefit.

The intended audience were working families who may now qualify for family credit, but who currently are not receiving family income supplement, and those who are already receiving family income supplement and are to be reassured that they will be automatically transferred to family credit after April 5 1988.

Information on the outcome of monitoring and the achievement of objectives is not available in the form requested and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Intended objectives of other campaigns in 1989–90 are as follows:

Enhanced Pensioner Premiums—July to September 1989. The objective is to create awareness of the increases in payment, to reassure those who receive the payment automatically and to motivate those entitled who would not otherwise receive payment to request an application form.

Announcement of New National Insurance Rates—September 1989. The objective is to make employers and employees aware of the changes in structure of national insurance contributions which come into effect on 5 October and to make married women paying reduced rate contributions aware of the implications.