Question to the Department for Work and Pensions:
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department is taking to increase the uptake of pension credits in Inverclyde.
Estimates for Pension Credit take-up in a financial year are only available at the Great Britain level and are available in the “Income-related benefits: estimates of take-up” publication which can be found on the statistics section of gov.uk. The latest publication relates to the financial year 2019 to 2020.
Pension Credit provides vital financial support to our most vulnerable pensioners. In Inverclyde some 2,600 pensioners already receive Pension Credit, but we want all those who are eligible to claim it. That’s why the Department launched a £1.2m nationwide communications campaign in April to raise awareness of Pension Credit and increase take-up. The campaign included:
In December further press and radio advertising and social media activity is planned. We will be focusing on highlighting to pensioners that if they apply for Pension Credit by 18 December, it will not be too late to qualify for a £324 Cost of Living Payment – subject to Pension Credit backdating rules.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (Lords) and I have also written to MPs and Peers asking for their support and inviting them to a Pension Credit event on 7 December, where I intend to update them on our communications campaign.
In the new year, DWP will again write to over 11 million pensioners as part of the annual uprating of State Pension. The accompanying leaflet has been updated to include the prominent campaign messaging promoting Pension Credit.