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Mrs. Lawrence: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will set out, with statistical information relating as directly as possible to Preseli Pembrokeshire constituency, the effects on Preseli Pembrokeshire of his Department's policies and actions since 2 May 1997. 
Mr. Hain: The Wales Office was established on 1 July 1999 with a remit to ensure the smooth running of the Welsh devolution settlement. This applies to the whole of Wales and it is not possible to distinguish the effect on a particular constituency. The Wales Office has reported annually on its activities in its Departmental Reports and, following the machinery of Government changes in 2003, in its Annual Report (Cm 6228) published in April 2004. :
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the official residences for which his Department is responsible; who occupies each one; what the annual cost is of running each property; what contribution the current occupants make towards the running costs of each; what the total capital and refurbishment expenditure has been on those properties in each of the past five years; how much money was spent in each property on (a) flowers and plants, (b) wine and entertaining, (c) food, (d) telephone bills and (e) electricity and gas in 200304; how many
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(i)domestic and (ii) maintenance staff are employed at each property, broken down by post; and what the total cost of staff employment at each was in 200304. 
Mr. Touhig: The Wales Office is not responsible for any official residences.
Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the speeches his special advisers made in an official capacity between 31 March 2003 and 31 March 2004, broken down by date. 
Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the occasions between 31 March 2003 and 31 March 2004 when special advisers attended meetings with external representatives at which Ministers were not present. 
Mr. Hain: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him on 16 December 2004, Official Report, column 1226W.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales whether his Department's Welsh language scheme was approved by the Welsh Language Board; and on what date the scheme was implemented. 
Mr. Touhig: The Wales Office scheme was approved by the Welsh Language Board on 1 March, and implemented on 28 May, 2004. Prior to that, we had operated within the spirit of the former Welsh Office scheme.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 17 January 2005, Official Report, column 773W, on benefit rates, if he will make it his policy to collect figures for the number of people in hospital for more than a year living on the weekly benefit rate of £15.90 who suffer from mental ill-health. 
Malcolm Wicks: We have no plans to collect information on hospital in-patients by type of illness because it is not relevant to the adjustment of their benefits.
Mrs. Lawrence: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will set out, with statistical information relating as directly as possible to Preseli, Pembrokeshire constituency, the effects on Preseli Pembrokeshire of his Department's policies and actions since it was established. 
We have undertaken a fundamental overhaul of the welfare system, transforming it to an active system that fights poverty, creates opportunity and helps people become self-sufficient and independent.
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Since 2001 the Government have significantly extended and improved civil rights for disabled people in areas such as employment, education, access to goods and services and transport. Disabled people in Preseli Pembrokeshire will have benefited from these improvements in disability rights. Similarly families with severely disabled three and four-year-old children who are unable, or virtually unable to walk will have benefited from the Government's decision to lower the minimum age entitlement to the higher rate mobility component of disability living allowance from April 2001, while older and less well off carers have gained extra help through the provisions within the National Carers Strategy.
In 200203 we estimate there were around 10 million adults (22 per cent.) and 0.7 million children (5 per cent.) in Great Britain likely to be covered by the provisions of the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA).
The figures can be broken down to regional level which shows that 31 per cent. of adults and 7 per cent. of children in Wales are likely to be covered by the provisions of the DDA.
Information on the numbers of customers in Preseli Pembrokeshire who are in receipt of disability living allowance (DLA) and attendance allowance (AA) is in the following table.
|Operational year||DLA/AA recipients|
Through Jobcentre Plus, we are promoting work as the best form of welfare for people of working age. The number of people in work is at historically high levels of over 28.5 million; in Preseli Pembrokeshire, the proportion in employment has risen to 71.6 per cent.
Our New Deals have helped lone parents, the young unemployed, the long-term unemployed, disabled people, the over 50s and partners of unemployed people to move from benefit into work. Nationally over 1.2 million people have been helped into work by the New Deals, with over 1,950 in Preseli Pembrokeshire alone.
Significant progress has been made in eradicating child poverty and the latest figures for 200203 show that, in the UK, there were over half a million fewer children in relative low income than there were in 199697. Since 200102 incomes for lone parents in receipt of benefit have risen by more than prices or the cost of living. In April 2005 the child allowance rate in income support for a child up to 18 years old will have been increased by 40 per cent. since 200102. Child rates in income support and jobseeker's allowance are also being increased above inflation in April 2005 in line with child tax credit upratings. All of this has benefited 1,400 families in Preseli Pembrokeshire.
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We want all pensioners to have a decent and secure income in retirement and to share fairly in the rising prosperity of the country and our first priority has been to help the poorest pensioners. The Government will be spending nearly £10 billion more in 200405 (in 200405 prices) on pensioners as a result of measures introduced since 1997, with around half going to the poorest third.
Our reforms include the state second pension, which helps more future pensioners build up better pensions, especially carers. Pension credit, introduced from October 2003, provides a contribution to a guaranteed minimum income for those aged 60 and over and, for the first time, those over aged 65 and over may be rewarded for savings and income. Around 3,905 pensioners in Preseli Pembrokeshire are receiving pension credit, with an average award of £38.36 per week.
We know that older people are disproportionately affected by fuel poverty. This winter (200405) we have again made available a winter fuel payment of £200 for each eligible household with someone aged 60 or over and £300 to those with someone aged 80 or over to help with their fuel bills. Additionally for this year eligible households with someone aged 70 or over will receive the One-off 70 plus payment of £100 to help with living expenses including council tax bills. It is paid with the winter fuel payment.
The constituency data on winter fuel payments and the additional 80 plus annual payment are available in the Library.
Since 1997 single pensioners and pensioner couples have seen a real terms increase in their basic state pension of 7 per cent. and 8 per cent., respectively. Some 15,600 pensioners in Preseli Pembrokeshire have benefited from this increase.
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