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|Claims received each year for benefits administered by DWP|
|(1) No information available. This is because either data was not collected or the data is unreliable. (2) IIDB = Industrial injuries disablement benefit. (3) IIDB figures do not include some claims from overseas. (4) REA = Reduced earnings allowance. (5) No new claims have been accepted for severe disablement allowance since April 2001; figures after this date represent claims which have been rebuilt. (6 )Jobseeker's allowance replaced unemployment benefit and income support for unemployed people on 7 October 1996. Therefore the figure for 1996-97 is a part year figure. Source: DWP management information data.|
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people receiving carer's allowance in (a) Milton Keynes and (b) England were in part-time employment in each year since 1997. 
Mrs. McGuire: As at 31 May 2006, the latest date for which information is available, over 785,000 carers of severely disabled people were entitled to carer's allowance. Of these, some 454,000 were receiving the allowance, 332,000 were receiving another income maintenance benefit of at least the same amount, and some 410,000 had the carer premium included in the assessment of their income-related benefits, or the additional amount for carers included in the assessment of their pension credit.
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions to whom the Commissioner of the Child Maintenance Enforcement Commission proposed in the White Paper. A new system of child maintenance will be directly accountable; and what reporting obligations the Commissioner will have to Parliament. 
Mr. Plaskitt: The Commissioner for Child Maintenance will lead C-MEC as part of an independent board. C-MEC will be required to produce annual reports and accounts to lay before Parliament. Further details on governance structures, including lines of accountability, will be brought forward in due course.
Mr. Plaskitt: Child Support legislation will only allow the transfer of an old scheme case to the new scheme where there are prescribed links to a new scheme application. In such cases, the new calculation will be based on the new scheme percentage rates of 15, 20 and 25 per cent. of net income depending on the number of children.
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what bonus pay awards he expects to be made to senior staff at the Child Support Agency this Christmas; and how much he expects his Department to pay in bonus payments. 
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what proportion of calls to each crisis loan helpline (a) were answered, (b) were unanswered and (c) received an engaged tone in the last period for which figures are available. 
Mr. Jim Murphy: The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the chief executive of Jobcentre Plus, Lesley Strathie. I have asked her to provide the hon. Member with the information requested.
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question asking what proportion of calls to each Crisis Loan helpline (a) were answered, (b) were unanswered and (c) received an engaged tone in the last period for which figures are available. This is something which falls within the responsibilities delegated to me as Chief Executive of Jobcentre Plus.
We do not have crisis loan helplines. Currently customers can be dealt with in 3 different ways when applying for Crisis Loans through Social Fund:
Regions and Countries that have migrated Social Fund into their regional and national sites and have officially gone live as a Benefit Delivery Centre will have issued an 0800 number for their customers to telephone. These 0800 numbers are specific to their Regions and Countries. Currently we have 4 Benefit Delivery Centres that have recently gone live that have centralised Social FundSheffield, Norwich, Newcastle and Nottingham. Not all districts in these regions have migrated their work into these Benefit Delivery Centres yet. It is therefore too early to have gathered information on numbers of calls and possible delays. Managers have responsibility for ensuring 25% of their staff are available at all times to answer telephone calls.
Offices that have rolled-out into Jobcentre Plus will give their customers the option of using the telephone service. In Regions and Countries that have not yet centralised Social Fund, these numbers will be local numbers (not 0800 numbers). In most cases customers will be ringing their nearest office. Information is not collated on the number of calls to these offices for crisis loans.
Not all offices have rolled out into Jobcentre Plus and customers in these areas will visit their local social security office to make an application for a crisis loan at the office.
Once all Benefit Delivery Centres have rolled out and Social Fund has migrated into the nominated Social Fund sites in the Regions and Countries, then 0800 numbers will be used nationally. Completion of roll-out for all Benefit Delivery Centres is March 2008 when advanced telephony systems will also be in place, enabling us to monitor telephony performance site by site.
Mrs. McGuire: The Disability Discrimination Act 2005 inserted into the 1995 Act the requirement for the Department to carry out certain specific disability equality duties. In particular, it is required to publish, and periodically review, a Disability Equality Scheme which sets out how it intends to carry out its disability equality duties. DWP and its constituent businesses published its first Disability Equality Schemes on 1 December 2006.
Impact assessing the Departments policies and services and preparation of the Disability Equality Schemes took some months to complete and involved all of the Departments businesses. Action plans will take some time to deliver. Identifying expenditure on these activities would be disproportionate to the costs. However some costs are clearly identifiable. These amount to £645,000 and include spending on the central team which co-ordinated and planned publication of the Schemes, the costs of publication and liaison with the businesses. This figure also includes the cost involved in producing Gender Equality Schemes and progress reports on Race Equality Schemes which were published with the Disability Equality Schemes.
(2) what estimate he has made of the additional cost to public funds of awarding disability living allowance at the higher rate for mobility to registered blind and visually impaired people now in receipt of the mobility component at the lower rate. 
Mrs. McGuire: As at May 2006, the latest date for which information is available, 62,140 people whose main disabling condition is recorded as blindness were receiving disability living allowance. Of these, 40,030 people under the age of 65 were receiving the lower-rate mobility component. The estimated additional cost of paying the higher-rate mobility component would be about £56 million per year.
DWP Information Directorate: Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study.
Mr. Jim Murphy: The Ethnic Minority Employment Task Force has made no assessment of forced labour in the UK. Responsibility for combating trafficking for labour exploitation lies with the Home Office. However, DWP fully supports policies which set and monitor international labour standards, including the regulation of gang masters.
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