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Mrs. McGuire: The Disability Discrimination Act 2005, which starts to come into force from 5 December, provides important new rights in areas such as transport, education, access to private clubs and community participation. It delivers our commitment to comprehensive and enforceable civil rights for disabled people.
The official notification period for pension schemes to apply to the Financial Assistance Scheme began on 1 September 2005. The Secretary
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of State will lay before Parliament a report on the operation of the Financial Assistance Scheme for each financial year. In particular the report must deal with the number of people who have received assistance payments and the total amount of such payments.
Margaret Hodge: The engagement of stakeholders, particularly organisations representing healthcare professionals, employers and employees, was an essential element in the development of the Health, Work and Well-Being strategy published last month. The successful delivery of the strategy will depend on this continued engagement and close partnership working.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the written statement of 20 July 2005, Official Report, column 103WS, whether the 260,000 child support cases yet to be cleared include thebacklog of new scheme cases mentioned by the Independent Case Examiner in her annual report 200405. 
The type of new scheme cases described by the Independent Case Examiner in her annual report 200405 are included in the 260,000 child support cases yet to be cleared, as referred to in the written statement made by my right hon. Friend the former Secretary for Work and Pensions (Mr. Blunkett) on 20 July 2005, Official Report, column 103WS.
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Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what arrangements his Department has made to publicise the arrangements for claiming the £200 council tax rebate among those not eligible for winter fuel payment. 
Mr. Timms: We are running an extensive publicity campaign which includes advertisements in both national and regional press. We have posters displayed in, and leaflets available from a variety of venues including doctor's surgeries, Citizen Advice Bureaux and benefit offices. Information is also available on the Pension Service website and from the winter fuel payment helpline.
Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions when pensioners in Hendon will receive their financial support for council tax bills due for 2005; how many pensioners in Hendon he expects to receive this help; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Timms: The £200 payment to help with council tax bills is being issued with the winter fuel payment. Payments commenced in early November and will continue until Christmas. Eligible people who do not receive a winter fuel payment will need to make a claim which must be received by 30 March 2006. We expect around 11,000 pensioners residing in Hendon will receive the £200 payment.
Margaret Hodge: The Government's successful stewardship of the economy has ensured a steady and concurrent growth in employment. This has meant we have been able to support people who had not previously looked for a job to move into the jobs market. Over the last year the number of people classed as economically inactive, excluding students, has fallen by 180,000.
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many letters have been sent by the Pension Service this year advising pensioners to pay outstanding contributions in national insurance in order to increase the total value of their pensions; how many responses have been received from pensioners; how many responses had been processed at 31 October; how many responses had been received but are yet to be processed at 31 October; what the average time period is for fully processing one of these payments; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Timms: Over a 12 month period from September 2004, 414,427 deficiency notice letters were issued by the Pension Service to pensioner customers in Great Britain and abroad. As at 31 October, 191,756 customers had responded.
As at 31 October, 26,433 customers had been awarded state pension for the first time or received arrears and an increase in their state pension. 31,370 responses were awaiting action from the Pension Service to calculate
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potential entitlement or revise the pension award and make payment. The Pension Service was awaiting further information on 9,207 responses from, for example, the customer or partner agencies.
76,214 customers had responded indicating that they did not wish to take any action. Not everyone will be better off by paying deficient years nor do all decide to progress their initial inquiry to payment stage.
James Brokenshire: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many complaints his Department has received in the last month concerning non-payment of winter fuel allowance claims at post offices owing to receipt of insufficient cash. 
Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he last assessed the merits of using capital gains tax relief to encourage new landlords to offer alternative accommodation to retiring farm tenants; and what his conclusions were. 
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