HL Deb 09 January 1995 vol 560 c12WA
Earl Russell

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How many people under 18 in Mansfield were unemployed on 13th October 1994, and how many of these were in receipt of severe hardship payments or income support.

Lord Inglewood

In October 1994 there were 54 claimant unemployed people aged under 18 in the Mansfield Local Authority District. Information is not available from the Department of Social Security (DSS) relating to local authority areas because Benefits Agency (BA) boundaries do not correspond to local authority boundaries. However, information has been provided relating to the BA's North Nottinghamshire District, which includes the Mansfield area.

Unemployed people aged 16 or 17 who fall into one of the exemption categories, as defined in the Social Security Regulations, can receive Income Support (IS) under the normal rules. Those who do not fall into the exemption categories can be considered for IS under the severe hardship provisions. Statistics are not maintained at BA District level relating to those people aged 16 or 17 who are in receipt of IS under the normal rules. In addition, although the DSS does maintain monthly statistics in respect of the number of applications from 16 and 17 year-olds for IS under the severe hardship provisions, information is not readily available relating to the number of people in receipt on a specific date in a particular area; such information could be obtained only at a disproportionate cost.

Normally a direction is made, in successful applications, for IS to be paid under the severe hardship provisions for an eight week period. At the BA's North Nottinghamshire District there were 55 successful applications in August 1994, 46 successful applications in September 1994 and 30 successful applications in October 1994 for IS under the severe hardship provisions.