1475. Deputy Sean Sherlock asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated yearly cost of restoring the fuel allowance to payment over 32 weeks rather than the current 26 weeks; her views on whether the allowance was of major benefit to low income households; her plans to restore the fuel allowance to 32 weeks per year in the forthcoming budget; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 34913/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1475, 1521, 1522, 1523 and 1560 together.
The fuel allowance is a payment of €22.50 per week for 26 weeks from October to April, to over 390,000 low income households. This payment assists these households with the higher energy costs that arise in that period. It is a contribution towards the energy costs of a household. It is not intended to meet those costs in full. Only one allowance is paid per hous...

1488. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Social Protection further to Parliamentary Question No. 452 of 12 July 2017 and the revised projected inflation figure for 2018 included in the summer economic statement published on 12 July 2017, the rates of all weekly payments; the resulting rates if they were to be increased in line with the revised harmonised index of consumer prices for 2018; and the estimated cost of this increase per scheme identifying the full and partial year effect if relevant, in tabular form. (Question 35199/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): The information that the Deputy is looking for is detailed in the following table. The costs are based on the 1.2% Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices rate for 2018, forecast in the Department of Finance’s Summer Economic Statement.
 Scheme Total Full Year Cost     -     €m Rate of Payment  2017 Proposed Rate of Payment 2018 Social Insurance Schemes     State Pension (Contributory) 56.93 €238.30 €241.10 Widow/er’s or Sur...

1521. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Social Protection the full year cost of increasing all basic social protection payments by €5, €7 and €10, respectively; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 35790/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1475, 1521, 1522, 1523 and 1560 together.
The fuel allowance is a payment of €22.50 per week for 26 weeks from October to April, to over 390,000 low income households. This payment assists these households with the higher energy costs that arise in that period. It is a contribution towards the energy costs of a household. It is not intended to meet those costs in full. Only one allowance is paid per hous...

1522. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Social Protection the full year cost of increasing the living alone allowance by €2, €3 and €5, respectively; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 35791/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1475, 1521, 1522, 1523 and 1560 together.
The fuel allowance is a payment of €22.50 per week for 26 weeks from October to April, to over 390,000 low income households. This payment assists these households with the higher energy costs that arise in that period. It is a contribution towards the energy costs of a household. It is not intended to meet those costs in full. Only one allowance is paid per hous...

1523. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Social Protection the full year cost of increasing the fuel allowance by €7 and €10, respectively, and extending it by a further six weeks; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 35792/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1475, 1521, 1522, 1523 and 1560 together.
The fuel allowance is a payment of €22.50 per week for 26 weeks from October to April, to over 390,000 low income households. This payment assists these households with the higher energy costs that arise in that period. It is a contribution towards the energy costs of a household. It is not intended to meet those costs in full. Only one allowance is paid per hous...

1541. Deputy Michael Fitzmaurice asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of persons by age and gender in receipt of each form of social protection payment and or partaking on a job activation or employment support scheme in tabular form; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 36042/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): The information requested by the Deputy is available at the following link:
[job activation and employment support scheme]

Details on Paternity Benefit will be supplied following the publication next month of the Annual Statistical Information on Social Welfare Services report.
Participants of a job activation or employment support scheme by age and sex at the end of December 2016.
 ...

1560. Deputy Gino Kenny asked the Minister for Social Protection the amount it would cost to restore the full Christmas bonus to all social welfare recipients; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 36396/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1475, 1521, 1522, 1523 and 1560 together.
The fuel allowance is a payment of €22.50 per week for 26 weeks from October to April, to over 390,000 low income households. This payment assists these households with the higher energy costs that arise in that period. It is a contribution towards the energy costs of a household. It is not intended to meet those costs in full. Only one allowance is paid per hous...

431. Deputy John Brady asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated cost of increasing jobseeker’s allowance, supplementary welfare allowance and the back to education allowance by €5. (Question 33415/17 asked on 12 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 431, 432, 453 and 454 together.
The full year cost of increasing jobseeker’s allowance, supplementary welfare allowance and the back to education allowance by €5 per week is estimated to be €64.8 million in 2018.
The full year cost of increasing the age related reduced jobseeker’s rates of €102.70 per week and €147.80 per week to the maximum jobseeker’s rate of €193 per week is estimated to be €109.1 million...

432. Deputy John Brady asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated cost of increasing age reduced jobseeker’s payments in line with the jobseeker’s payments paid to those aged over 26 years of age over three years. (Question 33416/17 asked on 12 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 431, 432, 453 and 454 together.
The full year cost of increasing jobseeker’s allowance, supplementary welfare allowance and the back to education allowance by €5 per week is estimated to be €64.8 million in 2018.
The full year cost of increasing the age related reduced jobseeker’s rates of €102.70 per week and €147.80 per week to the maximum jobseeker’s rate of €193 per week is estimated to be €109.1 million...

452. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Social Protection further to Parliamentary Question No. 481 of 21 March 2017, the rates of all weekly payments; the resulting rates if they were to be increased in line with the harmonised index of consumer prices for 2018; and the estimated cost of this increase per scheme identifying the full and partial year effect if relevant, in tabular form. (Question 33549/17 asked on 12 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): The information that the Deputy is looking for is detailed in the following table. The costs are based on the 1.8% Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices rate for 2018, forecast in the Department of Finance’s 2017 Budget Day publication.
 Scheme Total Full Year Cost - €m Rate of Payment  2017 Proposed Rate of Payment 2018 Social Insurance Schemes     State Pension (Contributory)  €         85.74 €238.30 €242.50 Widow/er’s o...

453. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated cost of each €1 increase to the age reduced JSA and SWA weekly rate of €102.70 in 2018. (Question 33550/17 asked on 12 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 431, 432, 453 and 454 together.
The full year cost of increasing jobseeker’s allowance, supplementary welfare allowance and the back to education allowance by €5 per week is estimated to be €64.8 million in 2018.
The full year cost of increasing the age related reduced jobseeker’s rates of €102.70 per week and €147.80 per week to the maximum jobseeker’s rate of €193 per week is estimated to be €109.1 million...

454. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated cost of each €1 increase to the age reduced JSA and SWA weekly rate of €147.80 in 2018. (Question 33551/17 asked on 12 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 431, 432, 453 and 454 together.
The full year cost of increasing jobseeker’s allowance, supplementary welfare allowance and the back to education allowance by €5 per week is estimated to be €64.8 million in 2018.
The full year cost of increasing the age related reduced jobseeker’s rates of €102.70 per week and €147.80 per week to the maximum jobseeker’s rate of €193 per week is estimated to be €109.1 million...

744. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of applications currently being assessed for each social welfare payment; the average turnaround time in 2017; the expected date a decision would be made in respect of an application lodged in July 2017, in tabular form; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 32355/17 asked on 11 Jul 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): The information requested by the Deputy is detailed in the table.
 Scheme Pending Start of May 2017 Average Time To Award (weeks) (Jan – May 2017) Jobseeker’s Benefit 3,094 1 Jobseeker’s Allowance 6,129 2 One-Parent Family Payment 1,171 6 State Pension Contributory (Dom) 3,533 6 Widow(er)’s Contributory Pension 300 1 State Pension Non-Contributory 2,321 11 Household Benefits 2,564 2 Free Travel 10 2 Domiciliary ...

267. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated annual cost of increasing the disability allowance by €5.50 per week; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 30524/17 asked on 29 Jun 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 267 to 270, inclusive, together.
The full year cost of increasing the weekly rate of Disability Allowance, from €193 to €198.50 per week, is estimated at €41.2 million in 2018.
There is an analogous social insurance payment, Invalidity Pension (€198.50 per week), which is paid to people who are permanently incapable of work (subject to satisfying the relevant medical criteria and a minimum number of paid qua...

268. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated annual cost of increasing the blind pension by €5.50 per week; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 30525/17 asked on 29 Jun 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 267 to 270, inclusive, together.
The full year cost of increasing the weekly rate of Disability Allowance, from €193 to €198.50 per week, is estimated at €41.2 million in 2018.
There is an analogous social insurance payment, Invalidity Pension (€198.50 per week), which is paid to people who are permanently incapable of work (subject to satisfying the relevant medical criteria and a minimum number of paid qua...

269. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated annual cost of increasing the living alone allowance by €9.50 per month; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 30526/17 asked on 29 Jun 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 267 to 270, inclusive, together.
The full year cost of increasing the weekly rate of Disability Allowance, from €193 to €198.50 per week, is estimated at €41.2 million in 2018.
There is an analogous social insurance payment, Invalidity Pension (€198.50 per week), which is paid to people who are permanently incapable of work (subject to satisfying the relevant medical criteria and a minimum number of paid qua...

270. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated annual cost of increasing the fuel allowance by three weeks; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 30527/17 asked on 29 Jun 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 267 to 270, inclusive, together.
The full year cost of increasing the weekly rate of Disability Allowance, from €193 to €198.50 per week, is estimated at €41.2 million in 2018.
There is an analogous social insurance payment, Invalidity Pension (€198.50 per week), which is paid to people who are permanently incapable of work (subject to satisfying the relevant medical criteria and a minimum number of paid qua...

564. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Social Protection further to a media inquiry (details supplied), the category of weekly payment which is referred to in row one to single men; the category of payment which is referred to in row two to women and families; and if the payment in row three refers to the funding of emergency accommodation. (Question 29684/17 asked on 27 Jun 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): The category of weekly payment which is referred to in each row of the statistics snapshot provided on foot of a media enquiry is Basic Supplementary Welfare Allowance and does not refer to the funding of emergency accommodation. Basic Supplementary Welfare Allowance is a weekly allowance paid to people who do not have enough means to meet their needs and those of their qualified adult or any qualified children.
While the New Communities U...

2079. Deputy John Brady asked the Minister for Social Protection the full year estimated cost of introducing a higher rate of the qualified child increase for all social welfare payments to families with dependent children over the age of 12 and to increase this by €5. (Question 28515/17 asked on 20 Jun 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 2079 and 2123 together.
Increases for a Qualified Child (IQCs) are paid as child-related supplements to most weekly social welfare payments in recognition of the need for greater incomes among benefit-dependent households with dependent children. The current full rate of payment is €29.80 per week per dependent child. The estimated expenditure on qualified child increase in 2017 is around €591million. The D...

2123. Deputy Willie Penrose asked the Minister for Social Protection the cost of introducing a higher rate of the qualified child increase for all social welfare payments to families with dependent children over 12 years of age and in particular, the cost of increasing same by €5 from €29.80 to €34.80; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 29117/17 asked on 20 Jun 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 2079 and 2123 together.
Increases for a Qualified Child (IQCs) are paid as child-related supplements to most weekly social welfare payments in recognition of the need for greater incomes among benefit-dependent households with dependent children. The current full rate of payment is €29.80 per week per dependent child. The estimated expenditure on qualified child increase in 2017 is around €591million. The D...

175. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of applications received for contributory old age pension, jobseeker’s allowance, non-contributory old age pension, disability allowance, invalidity pension and carer’s allowance, respectively, by month in each of the years 2015 to 2016, and to date in 2017; the number of cases granted, refused, granted on appeal and refused on appeal, respectively; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26245/17 asked on 31 May 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Leo Varadkar): The information requested by the Deputy is detailed in the following tables:
Carer’s Allowance 2015
 Month Registered Awarded Rejected Revised Deciding Officer Decision Appeal Allowed Appeal Partially Allowed Appeal Disallowed January 1,309 1,267 686 66 105 7 104 February 1,579 1,383 756 79 102 19 141 March 1,722 1,342 725 57 96 13 61 April 1,529 1,226 654 67 129 10 105 May 1,664 1,241 ...

183. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of young persons under 26 years of age that are in receipt of jobseeker’s allowance, jobseeker’s benefit and signing for credits for 12 months or more; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26257/17 asked on 31 May 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Leo Varadkar): I propose to take Questions Nos. 183 and 184 together. 
The information requested by the Deputy (as at the end of April) is detailed in the following tables:

 Jobseeker’s Allowance County 6-12 months 12 months and over Carlow 182 211 Cavan 154 241 Clare 221 237 Cork 557 758 Donegal 466 686 Dublin 1,771 2,464 Galway 352 534 Kerry 256 285 Kildare 272 450 Kilkenny 109 171 ...

184. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of young persons under 26 years of age that are in receipt of jobseeker’s allowance, jobseeker’s benefit and signing for credits for six months or more by county; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26258/17 asked on 31 May 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Leo Varadkar): I propose to take Questions Nos. 183 and 184 together. 
The information requested by the Deputy (as at the end of April) is detailed in the following tables:

 Jobseeker’s Allowance County 6-12 months 12 months and over Carlow 182 211 Cavan 154 241 Clare 221 237 Cork 557 758 Donegal 466 686 Dublin 1,771 2,464 Galway 352 534 Kerry 256 285 Kildare 272 450 Kilkenny 109 171 ...

151. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated full year cost of increasing jobseeker’s allowance for those from 18 to 24 years of age from its current rate of €102.70 to €105.00, €110.00, €120.00, €130.00, €140.00, €150.00, €160.00, €170.00, €180.00, €190.00, €193.00 and €200.00, respectively, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 25242/17 asked on 25 May 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Leo Varadkar): I propose to take Questions Nos. 151, 152 and 156 together.
The costings sought by the Deputy are detailed in the following series of tables.
Table 1: Cost of increasing the reduced rate payable to Jobseeker’s Allowance and Supplementary Welfare Allowance recipients aged 18 to 24 years of age 

 Increasing the weekly rate of €102.70 (payable to 18 to 24 year olds) to: Cost €m €105.00 2.80 €110.00 8.80 €120.00 20.80 €130.00 32.9...

152. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection the estimated full year cost of increasing jobseeker’s allowance for persons who are 25 years of age from its current rate of €147.80 to €150.00, €160.00, €170.00, €180.00, €190.00, €193.00 and €200.00 respectively; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 25243/17 asked on 25 May 2017 - Social Welfare Benefits Data)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Leo Varadkar): I propose to take Questions Nos. 151, 152 and 156 together.
The costings sought by the Deputy are detailed in the following series of tables.
Table 1: Cost of increasing the reduced rate payable to Jobseeker’s Allowance and Supplementary Welfare Allowance recipients aged 18 to 24 years of age 

 Increasing the weekly rate of €102.70 (payable to 18 to 24 year olds) to: Cost €m €105.00 2.80 €110.00 8.80 €120.00 20.80 €130.00 32.9...