This is the sixteenth issue of the annual "Statistical Information on Social Welfare Services" prepared by the Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs. It sets out comprehensive data relating to services provided by the Department.
The statistics set out in this report relate to 1998 and earlier years. In the case of data relating to recipients and beneficiaries, the figures, unless otherwise stated, refer to the 31st December each year. Several tables, which provide a breakdown of recipients or beneficiaries by some characteristic such as number of dependants or age, are refered to as "estimated". This means that the proportionate breakdown, which is considered to be a reliable estimate, was established at a date other than, but close to, 31st December.
Expenditure figures for 1998 are provisional pending certification by the Comptroller and Auditor General. In a limited number of tables recipient numbers for 1997 are shown as "estimated". This arose because of the introduction of new payment systems for schemes involved. The data shown is not a precise count of recipients but is nonetheless regarded as a reliable estimate and was established at a date other than 31st December, 1997.
Time Series and Changes to Existing Payments
Time Series data are given, where available. However, the introduction of new payments and changes to existing payments affect the comparability of different years’ figures in some instances. Relevant tables are footnoted where appropriate.
Source of Data
The source for the statistics presented, unless otherwise stated, is the Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs.
Breakdown by Section
The report is divided into eight sections as follows:
Section A - Summary and Financial
Section B - Old Age
Section C - Widows, Widowers and One Parent Families
Section D - Child Related Payments
Section E - Illness, Disability and Caring
Section F - Unemployment and EmploymentSupports
Section G - Miscellaneous Benefits, Allowances and Grants
Section H - Management Statistics
Appendix 2 (page 91) lists the payments covered by each category.
Section A provides details of expenditure, recipients of weekly Social Welfare Payments, insured persons and rates of payment.
Section B provides details of expenditure and recipients of payments relating to old age.
Section C provides details of expenditure and recipients of payments to widows, widowers and one parent families. It also includes some statistics on payment to deserted wives and prisoners' wives.
Section D provides details of expenditure and recipients of child related payments including Child Benefit, Orphan's Pensions and Maternity Benefit.
Section E provides details of expenditure and recipients of Disability Benefit, Invalidity Pension, Disability Allowance, Blind Person's Pension, Carers Allowance and Occupational Injury Benefits.
Section F provides details of unemployment payments, Family Income Supplement and Employment Support Services.
Section G provides details of Supplementary Welfare Allowance, Treatment Benefits, Free Schemes and other miscellaneous payments (e.g. Death Grants, Living Alone Allowance etc.). In addition, this section includes information on the Voluntary and Community Services as well as the Family Services administered by the Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs.