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28 Feb 2007 : Column 1395W—continued


Industrial Health and Safety: Immigrants

John Cummings: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate the Health and Safety Executive has made of the number of (a) deaths and (b) accidents at work involving immigrant workers in the last five years. [121256]

Mrs. McGuire: HSE has not made any estimate of the number of fatalities and accidents at work involving immigrant workers in the last five years. Available data sources do not allow such estimates to be made.

However, HSE has published the findings of research on the health and safety of migrant workers in England and Wales. This concluded that migrant workers are at no more risk than any other workers doing the same job. However, migrant workers tend to work in higher-risk sectors of the economy, Since the greatest risk factor for an accident at work is the job workers do, migrant workers as a group face disproportionately higher risks. HSE already targets its activity towards those at greatest risk, which will therefore target migrant workers working in high-risk sectors or occupations.


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HSE is committed to securing high standards of health and safety protection for all workers, whether they are recent immigrants or not.

Jobseeker’s Allowance: Take-up

Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people aged (a) 16 to 24, (b) 25 to 49 and (c) over 50 years terminated their claim for jobseeker’s allowance in each of the last five years. [120305]

Mr. Plaskitt: The available information is in the following table.

Jobseeker’s allowance off-flows in Great Britain by age group; each calendar year
Age 16-24 Age 25-49 Age 50 and over

2001

990,420

1,368,720

372,705

2002

980,385

1,375,615

365,010

2003

972,175

1,313,625

350,025

2004

920,820

1,209,645

330,690

2005

892,635

1,124,530

308,495

2006

980,560

1,164,640

323,100

Notes:
1. Figures have been rounded to the nearest five.
2. Figures are for the yearly total off-flows and not individual claimants, as claimants may flow on and off benefit more than once each year.
3. Figures do not include a small number of clerically held claims.
4. The figure for each year is for the total off-flows from January to December.
Source:
100 per cent. count of claimants of unemployment-related benefits, Jobcentre Plus computer systems.

New Deal: Females

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many women in Coventry have participated in (a) the new deal for lone parents and (b) the new deal for partners since 1997; and if he will make a statement. [118410]

Mr. Jim Murphy [holding answer 6 February 2007]: The information on new deal for lone parents is in the following table.

Constituency New deal for lone parents

Coventry, South

1,060

Coventry, North-east

1,670

Coventry, North-west

1,110

Total

3,840

Notes:
1. Figures are latest available, up to August 2006.
2. Figures for the participation of women on new deal for partners in Coventry are nil or negligible.
3. Figures are rounded to 10.
Source:
Information Directorate, DWP

Pensioners: Greater London

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the number of pensioners with an income of less than £115 per week in each London borough in each of the last five years. [122420]


28 Feb 2007 : Column 1397W

James Purnell: The information requested is not available.

Pensions

Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many (a) men and (b) women who had previously contracted out contracted back in to S2P/SERPS in each of the last five years. [120378]

James Purnell: The information requested is not available. Available information on numbers of men and women contracted out in recent years is shown in the following table.

Contracted out scheme membership at end of tax year
Thousand
1999-2000 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003-04

Men

8,030

7,899

7,754

7,236

7,132

Women

5,968

6,044

6,116

5,873

5,933

Total

13,998

13,943

13,869

13,109

13,065

Notes: 1. Numbers include an element of double counting as a person may be a member of more than one type of scheme at any one time—for example an occupational defined benefit scheme and an appropriate personal pension scheme. 2. Figures for 2002-03 and 2003-04 are the latest published figures available and may be subject to changes in future publications of the second tier pension provision. They should be regarded, therefore, as provisional. 3. Figures are produced from the Lifetime Labour Market Database which is based on a 1 per cent sample extract of the National Insurance Recording System 2. They are shown to the nearest thousand and, due to rounding, may not, therefore, add. Source: Department for Work and Pensions: 'Second Tier Pension Provision' published January 2006

Pensions: Financial Assistance Scheme

Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much was paid into the Financial Assistance Scheme in each year since its inception. [124020]

James Purnell: The amount paid into the Financial Assistance Scheme in each year since its inception is as follows:

£ million
Administrative costs Payments Total

2004-05

1.1

0.0

1.1

2005-06

4.7

0.1

4.8

2006-07 to date

3.0

3.1

6.1

Total to date

8.8

3.2

12.0


The administrative costs include one off set up costs which cover opening the operational unit and building the necessary IT systems.

Pensions: Reform

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the evidential basis was for the assumption in The Gender Impact of Pensions Reform that individuals with different working and caring patterns will receive more in retirement income under the reformed system. [120550]


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James Purnell: The Gender Impact of Pension Reform (section 4.5) analysed the income at retirement for hypothetical women with different working and caring patterns. The assumptions concerning these working and caring patterns and income when in work are set out in Annex C of the publication.

Unemployment Benefits: Eligibility

Mr. Mark Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions to what UK benefits A2 and A8 nationals who become unemployed are entitled . [120266]

Mr. Plaskitt: A8 and A2 nationals who become unemployed may be able to access income-based jobseeker’s allowance (JSA(IB)) provided they are looking for work. In order to qualify, they generally must have worked legally for at least 12 months. If eligible for JSA(IB), they may also qualify for housing benefit and council tax benefit.

A8 and A2 nationals who come to the UK to look for work or who have worked for less than 12 months cannot normally access benefits. This is because their right to reside in the UK is subject to them being self-sufficient.

Voluntary Work

Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps he is taking to encourage people claiming jobseeker’s allowance and incapacity benefit to undertake voluntary work. [118793]

Mr. Plaskitt: We recognise that not only does voluntary work make an invaluable contribution to society and local communities, but it can also help improve an individual’s readiness for employment. As long as people continue to satisfy the rules of the benefit, volunteers receiving any benefits can continue to perform their voluntary activity for as many hours as they wish, without affecting their entitlement in any way. Last year we made changes to make it clear that volunteers could be provided with, or expenses for, meals taken away from home while engaged in voluntary work without their benefit being affected.

Jobseeker’s allowance recipients are required to be able to take up employment immediately of up to 40 hours per week. However, there is an exception to this rule for people undertaking voluntary work. Volunteers must be willing and able to take up employment with one week’s notice and to attend a job interview within 48 hours. These arrangements allow volunteers to continue to receive benefits while being engaged in voluntary work. Voluntary work is also treated as one of the steps a jobseeker must take to look for work where that improves their chance of securing work.

Voluntary work will also be appropriate for some claimants of our new employment and support allowance (ESA) and the current rules on voluntary work will be carried forward into both strands of ESA. Voluntary work will count as work-related activity for a customer where it is making it more likely that they will be able to obtain remunerative work in the future.


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Jobseeker’s allowance customers on new deal for young people who have not found work by the end of the gateway stage of the programme must enter one of the four mandatory options. One of the four mandatory options available is the voluntary sector option.

This option offers a combination of job search, high quality work projects and job placements and consists of activities, which deliver benefits to local communities in line with the Government’s social policies and objectives.

Winter Fuel Payments

Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much has been spent on making winter fuel payments to pensioners living outside the UK in each year since such payments were introduced, broken down by country of recipients’ residence. [122926]

James Purnell: Since 2002, following discussions with the European Commission about the effect of Community law, winter fuel payments have been made to eligible former UK residents living elsewhere in the European Economic Area or Switzerland provided they qualified for a winter fuel payment before leaving the UK. Although in some cases payments were made for years before 2002, a separate breakdown of payments for the earlier years is not available. Information from 2002-03 is in the following table. Figures for winter 2006-07 are not included because the winter fuel payment exercise is still ongoing.


28 Feb 2007 : Column 1400W
£
WFPS by country 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06

Gibraltar

5,000

7,500

11,000

14,300

Republic of Ireland

104,800

230,500

388,300

606,500

Austria

2,600

4,400

7,400

16,300

Belgium

3,200

6,800

11,000

20,500

Denmark

2,400

3,600

5,200

8,450

Finland

1,800

2,100

3,800

5,800

France

283,700

603,500

1,019,600

1,540,950

Germany

14,300

37,200

58,500

97,300

Greece

10,500

26,100

51,300

85,300

Italy

16,200

32,900

75,000

105,800

Luxembourg

600

600

1,600

2,300

Netherlands

4,200

9,900

14,400

26,400

Norway

400

1,500

2,200

4,000

Portugal

16,700

42,500

80,200

119,700

Spain

807,500

1,624,900

2,754,450

3,486,050

Sweden

1,100

4,600

7,000

12,000

Switzerland

1,200

3,400

7,400

15,400

Iceland

0

0

800

900

Liechtenstein

0

0

0

200

Malta

0

0

38,040

69,400

Republic of Estonia

0

0

0

1,400

Republic of Latvia

0

0

200

800

Republic of Lithuania

0

0

0

700

Hungary

0

0

1400

10,300

Poland

0

0

1400

14,200

Cyprus

0

0

188,410

349,000

Republic of Slovenia

0

0

200

400

The Czech Republic

0

0

200

600

The Slovak Republic

0

0

0

400

Notes:
1. The figures for years 2002-03 and 2003-04 include only automated payments. These account for the great majority of payments made. Figures for clerical payments made in these years are not available broken down by country. However clerical payments are included in the figures from 2004-05.
2. Malta, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia joined the European Union and therefore became part of the European Economic Area in May 2004. Winter fuel payments could be paid to eligible former UK residents living in these countries from winter 2004-05.
3. Pensioners living overseas were first paid in winter 2002-03, these payments included any arrears due for earlier winters. It is not possible to give a separate breakdown of these earlier years.

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