Incapacity Benefit

Work and Pensions written question – answered on 16th July 2001.

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Photo of Ms Annabelle Ewing Ms Annabelle Ewing Scottish National Party, Perth

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

(1) if he will provide a breakdown by (a) constituency and (b) region of the United Kingdom of the number of new claimants of Incapacity Benefit anticipated in each year until 2005–06;

(2) what projection he has made of (a) the number of future claimants who will lose entitlement to Incapacity Benefit as a result of the proposed changes and (b) the average loss of entitlement per claimant, broken down by (i) constituency and (ii) region, of (A) Scotland, (B) England, (C) Wales and (D) Northern Ireland;

(3) what assessment he has made of the annual saving as a result of the Government's proposed changes to Incapacity Benefit in each year up to 2005–06, broken down by (a) constituency and (b) each region of the United Kingdom; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Malcolm Wicks Malcolm Wicks Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Work and Pensions

The information is not available in the format requested. The proposed changes to Incapacity Benefit are intended to help people move into work where possible, rather than reducing people's entitlement or making savings. In the past many people were moved onto Incapacity Benefit with limited help to make sure that they got the right level of support. There was no help to get people into work, nor any support or rehabilitation. Yet, as research has shown, one million disabled people not in work say they would like to work. We have a duty to help them do so and our proposals will help to achieve this.

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