(1) what definition of multiple exclusion the Government use; and what estimate he has made of the number and proportion of (a) working age and (b) older people who meet this definition;
(2) what estimate he has made of the number and proportion of those defined as socially excluded who are (a) children, (b) adults under state pension age and (c) adults over state pension age.
There are a number of ways to measure exclusion. One method is to look at people or places that have a combination of linked problems, such as unemployment, discrimination, poor skills, low incomes, poor housing, high crime, bad health and family breakdown. Recent analysis by the Social Exclusion Task Force found that around 140,000 families with children (or 2 per cent. of all families with children) in Britain experienced five or more disadvantages in 2004.
Previous work commissioned by the former Social Exclusion Unit found that approximately 1.86 million (or 5.2 per cent.) of working age adults in Britain experienced five or more disadvantages in 2003, down from 2.43 million (or 7 per cent.) in 1997. For pensioners this was 1.8 million people (or 16.8 per cent.), down from 2.37 million (or 23 per cent.) in 1997.
The Social Exclusion Task Force is currently conducting work to update these figures and these will be available in the summer.