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Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much has been given to preserved rights residents in care homes for each region and local authority in each of the last five years; and how much has been transferred to local authorities for former preserved rights residents for 200203. 
Maria Eagle: The information is not available in the format requested. Such information as is available is in the table. The figures in the table show the actual preserved rights benefit expenditure by Government office region for the last five years. The figures reflect a case load that has had no new preserved rights cases since 1993 and declines by 10,000 cases each year. The total transfer payment to Department of Health was based on forecast expenditure for 200203. It included an amount to reflect the loss of disability benefits by preserved rights customers, but was net of on-going benefit liabilities which will continue to be met by this Department.
A total transfer of £714 million was made for Great Britain. £614 million was transferred by the Department for Work and Pensions, for 200203, to fund the transfer of preserved rights cases. In addition an extra £100 million was agreed by HM Treasury to cover the shortfall between care fees and preserved rights limits.
10 Jul 2002 : Column 1011W
|Yorks and Humber||114||95||80||71||64|
1. 200102 expenditure is estimated outturn.
2. Derived using sample data, therefore subject to sampling variation.
4. Figures for North West include Merseyside. Merseyside merged with North West in February 1999.
5. There were no new preserved rights cases after March 1993 when the community care arrangements came into force. The amount paid for preserved rights cases has declined in line with the case load which reduces by about 10,000 cases each year.
1. Income Support Quarterly Statistical Enquiry.
2. DWP expenditure data.
10 Jul 2002 : Column 1012W
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to his answer of 19 November 2001, Official Report, column 145W, on preserved rights residents, if he will give comparable figures for the previous three years for which figures are available. 
Maria Eagle: The information requested is in the following table which shows income support claimants with preserved rights in residential care/nursing homes for the years requested, May 2000, May 1999, and May 1998.
|All preserved rights cases||Residential care||Nursing homes|
|Number (thousand)||Percentage||Number (thousand)||Percentage||Number (thousand)||Percentage|
|Fees equal to or below IS||57.8||55.7||38.6||56.3||19.2||54.6|
|Fees above IS||45.9||44.3||30.0||43.7||15.9||45.4|
|of which above IS by:|
|£0.01 to £14.44(22)||16.4||15.8||8.1||11.9||8.3||23.6|
|£14.45 to £20.00||3.5||3.4||2.2||3.2||1.3||3.6|
|£20.01 to £30.00||4.3||4.1||2.7||4.0||1.6||4.4|
|£30.01 to £40.00||4.0||3.9||2.7||3.9||1.3||3.7|
|£40.01 to £50.00||2.2||2.1||1.4||2.1||0.7||2.1|
|£50.01 to £60.00||1.6||1.6||1.1||1.6||0.5||1.4|
|£60.01 to £70.00||1.4||1.3||1.0||1.4||(23)0.4||1.1|
|£70.01 and over||12.6||12.1||10.7||15.6||1.9||5.4|
|Fees equal to or below IS||49.2||57.1||33.4||56.3||15.8||58.8|
|Fees above IS||37.0||42.9||25.9||43.7||11.1||41.2|
|of which above IS by:|
|£0.01 to £14.74(22)||11.6||13.5||6.6||11.2||5.0||18.6|
|£14.75 to £20.00||2.8||3.3||1.7||2.8||1.1||4.2|
|£20.01 to £30.00||3.8||4.4||2.3||3.9||1.4||5.3|
|£30.01 to £40.00||2.7||3.1||2.0||3.4||0.6||2.4|
|£40.01 to £50.00||1.9||2.2||1.4||2.3||0.6||2.1|
|£50.01 to £60.00||1.2||1.4||0.8||1.3||(23)0.4||1.5|
|£60.01 to £70.00||1.3||1.5||0.9||1.6||(23)0.3||1.3|
|£70.01 and over||11.7||13.6||10.2||17.1||1.5||5.7|
|Fees equal to or below IS||40.2||54.1||27.6||52.4||12.6||58.4|
|Fees above IS||34.1||45.9||25.1||47.6||9.0||41.6|
|of which above is by:|
|£0.01 to £15.44(22)||11.1||15.0||7.0||13.2||4.2||19.3|
|£15.45 to £20.00||2.1||2.9||1.1||2.0||1.0||4.8|
|£20.01 to £30.00||2.9||4.0||2.0||3.9||0.9||4.2|
|£30.01 to £40.00||2.4||3.2||2.0||3.8||(23)0.3||1.6|
|£40.01 to £50.00||1.4||1.9||0.9||1.8||(23)0.5||2.2|
|£50.01 to £60.00||1.2||1.6||1.0||1.8||(23)0.2||0.9|
|£60.01 to £70.00||1.2||1.6||0.9||1.7||(23)0.3||1.5|
|£70.01 and over||11.8||15.8||10.2||19.4||1.5||7.1|
(22) Below the personal expenses allowance of £14.45 in May 1998, £14.75 in May 1999, and £15.45 in May 2000.
(23) These figures are subject to a high degree of sampling variation and should be used as a rough guide to the current situation only.
1. Figures are rounded to the nearest hundred and expressed in thousands.
2. Based on a 5 per cent. sample and therefore subject to a degree of sampling variation.
Income Support Quarterly Statistical Enquiries, May 19982000.
10 Jul 2002 : Column 1013W
Mr. Nicholas Brown [holding answer 4 July 2002]: We recognise the devastating impact redundancies can have on local economies and the people directly affected. Wherever major redundancies occur, in manufacturing or any other sector, Jobcentre Plus together with other key regional partners, will set up a task force to identify and provide the support needed by those affected. This can include help through the Rapid Response Service where appropriate.
The aim of the Rapid Response Service is to provide support for those affected by redundancy and help people make the transition into sustainable new jobs. The nature of the help provided by the service will be tailored to the needs of the individuals, the employer, and the local labour market. This could include offering information, advice and guidance to those affected, help with jobsearch, facilitating retraining where necessary, or developing customised retraining programmes. People affected by redundancy can also have early access to Jobcentre Plus programmes such as the New Deals and Work Based Learning for Adults. Assistance is currently being made available to over 13,000 people from 47 different companies.
Mr. Nicholas Brown [holding answer 4 July 2002]: We are leading a fundamental overhaul of the welfare system, transforming it from a passive organisation paying out benefits to an active system that fights poverty, creates opportunity and helps people become self- sufficient and independent. To do this service delivery is being overhauled to offer distinct services that meet the different needs of the Department's client groups: pensioners, people of working age and children. We are investing in improved and modernised services that are easier for customers to access, make better use of technology, and are more accurate and secure.
Jobcentre Plus is addressing the difficulties faced by people living in rural areas, both in securing employment and gaining access to its services. A key part of the new Jobcentre Plus process involves initial contact being made by telephone, improving service for people whose nearest office is a distance from their home.
10 Jul 2002 : Column 1014W
Customers can also access Employer Direct, Jobseeker Direct and the Benefit Enquiry Line (for people with disabilities) by telephone. In addition, they can access Worktrain, Learndirect and UK Online centres through the internet. Jobcentre Plus will continue to look for innovative ways of delivering and marketing its service, building on current experiments such as locating Jobpoints and other services in retail outlets and post offices.
The local service element of the Pension Service is being developed to reflect the communities it serves in rural areas and it will take full account of the needs of individual communities. Among other things, it will raise awareness and encourage the take-up of benefits to which pensioners may be entitled. At present, a visiting service is provided for customers. From October 2002, we plan that the local service will start to provide surgeries for both appointments and drop-in calls.
Drop-in surgeries will be available from April 2003 such as community centres or the premises of voluntary bodies regularly visited by pensioners, increasing awareness and accessibility of the Pension Service and its work. There will also be a network of formation points in similar locations and a benefits information service for care workers, volunteers and others to raise awareness of pensioner benefits.
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