HC Deb 20 December 1999 vol 341 cc323-4W
Mr. Willetts

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security, pursuant to her answer of 29 November 1999,Official Report, column 56W, on what is based his estimate of the total amount of extra social security expenditure necessary to achieve average increases in household income of (a) £46 per week before housing costs and (b) £52 per week after housing costs. [102814]

Angela Eagle

My written answer of 29 November 1999,Official Report, column 56W, provided estimates for the additional incomes required to ensure that all children were in households with at least half average income. Any implications for increased Social Security expenditure would be dependent upon how the increase in incomes was achieved. Increases in Social Security expenditure can be used to increase household incomes through improving incentives to work and helping people find work as well as through directly increasing benefit payments. Action on a wide range of fronts can boost incomes through increasing the earnings potential of those on low incomes and helping people to achieve their potential. Different approaches would require different levels of Social Security expenditure.

Our strategy for eradicating child poverty within 20 years involves tackling the main causes of poverty and social exclusion. This means helping parents find work, making work pay and ensuring that every child gets the best possible start in life as well as providing additional help for families through the tax and benefit system.

Back to