Select Committee on Children, Schools and Families Minutes of Evidence

Supplementary memorandum submitted by the Child Poverty Unit, Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF)

  1.   Report on the location of the Child Poverty Unit team members (Question 23—transcript reference)

  All but three of the staff in the Child Poverty Unit (CPU) are based in the DCSF headquarters in Sanctuary Buildings, Great Smith Street. The DCSF is introducing "hot desking" arrangements to deliver greater efficiencies in the use of space and equipment. The CPU is based on the Ground Floor where these arrangements are already in place and the staff there all "hot desk" with telephony following the individual. Two staff are based in the Treasury and another member of the Unit is based in Sheffield.

  2.   To write to ONS (and copy response to the Select Committee) about appropriate publication of progress reports against the Ending Child Poverty document.

  (Question 44—transcript reference)

  Officials are in the process of drafting a letter from the Secretary of State to the Head of the Office of National Statistics about future arrangements for the publication of the Opportunity for All indicators. The Secretary of State will copy the response from ONS to the Committee.

  3.   Level of benefit received by a customer on income support with the carers' premium.

  (Question 56—transcript reference)

  Income Support provides financial help for working-age people who are not required to be available for work, whose income is below a prescribed level, and who work less than 16 hours a week (24 hours for partners). The amount of Income Support a person is entitled to will depend on their personal circumstances. For example, a single person aged 25 years and over who is entitled to Income Support and the Carer's Premium would receive £88.25 per week.

  £88.25 is correct for a single person over 25 (made up of £60.50 personal allowance and £27.75 carer premium). The carer premium is a standard amount paid on top of the relevant personal allowance.

  The Secretary of State asked the Minister for Disabled People to reply to Lynda Waltho's letter regarding carers allowance. Lynda Waltho subsequently sent a letter thanking the Minister for her response.

June 2008

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