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Mr. Bayley: About 170,000 awards of Disability Living Allowance and 283,000 awards of Attendance Allowance were terminated in the 12 months ending 31 January 2001. Awards are terminated when people's condition improves and their care and/or mobility needs reduce, they go to live abroad, they enter long-term residential care, or they die.
During the same period about 186,000 awards of Disability Living Allowance and 6,000 awards of Attendance Allowance were renewed, and 270,000 new awards of Disability Living Allowance and 330,000 new awards of Attendance Allowance were made. There was therefore a net increase in the number of people receiving Disability Living Allowance and Attendance Allowance in the period.
27. Mr. Simon Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many pensioners are eligible for the Minimum Income Guarantee in (a) Wales and (b) England; and how many and what proportion have had their applications approved to date. 
Mr. Rooker: There are currently some 97,000 pensioners in Wales and some 1.4 million in England in receipt of the Minimum Income Guarantee. This figure does not include spouses and dependants, who account for some 2 million beneficiaries in GB. As a result of the national take-up campaign over 182,000 additional claims have been processed by the end of January, of which some 82,000 were successful.
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Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many people have been sent letters inviting them to apply for the Minimum Income Guarantee; how many tear-off slips have been returned; how many of the letters have resulted in a successful claim; how many people have contacted the Minimum Income Guarantee helpline; how many claims have been submitted as a result of a helpline inquiry; and how many of the helpline inquiries have resulted in a successful claim. 
Mr. Rooker: Since the launch of the campaign last May, 2.4 million pensioners have been written to and around 840,000 pensioners have responded. Over 475,000 calls have been received by the MIG claim line service and some 365,000 pensioners have requested a postal claim pack. At the end of January, the Department had received over 182,000 additional claims. Claims continue to be received and processed.
29. Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security when he last met (a) the National Autistic Society, (b) Mencap, (c) the Royal National Institute for the Blind, (d) the Royal National Institution for Deaf People, (e) the Council for Disabled Children and (f) the Down's Syndrome Association to discuss the provision of benefits. 
Mr. Bayley: I last met the National Autistic Society in February 1999; Mencap in November 2000; the Royal National Institute for the Blind in May 2000; and the Royal National Institute for the Deaf in May 1999. 1 have not met the Council for Disabled Children or the Down's Syndrome Association, though I have recently written to the latter about a report it produced on benefits.
30. Mr. David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what representations he has received about the exclusion from eligibility for winter fuel allowance of those who are aged 60 years or over on the relevant date. 
Mr. Rooker: The information is not kept in the format requested. So far this winter, around 11 million people have benefited from Winter Fuel Payments. The representations we have received concerning exclusions from the scheme are negligible.
31. Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security pursuant to his oral answer of 29 January 2001, Official Report, column 1, what the value is of bereavement benefit anticipated to be paid out; and what conveniently available figures he has for the likely number of recipients. 
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|Gross expenditure (£ million)||Number of recipients (Thousand)||Average amount of weekly benefit (£ per week)|
|Lump-sum bereavement payment||110||60||--|
|Widowed parents allowance||340||60||100|
(25) Due to overlaps between the numbers receiving lump sum bereavement payment and those receiving weekly benefits, the total number of recipients counts numbers of weekly benefit recipients only.
1. Figures estimated by the Government Actuary's Department and are consistent with the latest pre-Budget report. Estimates are in cash terms.
2. Expenditure estimates are rounded to the nearest £10 million; recipient numbers to the nearest 10,000; and average amounts to the nearest £10. Figures may not sum due to rounding.
3. Income-related benefit effects are excluded. Figures do not therefore represent changes in overall benefit expenditure due to the reforms to widow's bereavement benefits, nor do the average amounts represent average changes in weekly incomes.
4. No explicit assumptions are made about levels of take-up.
5. For the lump sum bereavement payment it is assumed that a certain proportion of payments in early 2001-02 continue to attract a payment of £1,000 as the deaths occurred in the previous financial year.
6. Figures do not include women who receive Widow's Pension under the current rules.
Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) what estimate he has made of the savings in means tested social security payments to his Department of a lone parent with one child aged over 11 leaving unemployment and entering a job that pays (a) £20,000 per annum and (b) £7,500 per annum; 
|Out of work benefits||In work benefits||Income related benefit saving|
|Local authority renter|
1. This table assumes:
(a) work of 30 hours or more per week
(b) no child care costs involved in WFTC assessment
(c) private rented housing average rent of £78.40
(d) local authority housing average rent £43.32
(e) council tax of £9.90.
2. Working Families Tax Credit has been treated as an income-related benefit for these calculations.
3. Of the examples in this table the one that is most typical of a lone parent moving from benefit into work would be a local authority renter.
5 Mar 2001 : Column: 68W
Mr. Bayley: Investment in income-related benefits such as the Minimum Income Guarantee has provided the most effective and immediate way of tackling poverty. Modernising current systems through the development of tax credits and more tax-like assessments of benefits will provide a more efficient and simpler way of ensuring that people on low and modest incomes receive the security to which they are entitled.
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