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Information and public services for the Island of Jersey

L'înformâtion et les sèrvices publyis pouor I'Île dé Jèrri

Social Security Minister proposes income support increases

21 September 2023

The Minister for Social Security, Deputy Elaine Millar, has published proposals for an 8.6% increase in income support benefits from January next year. This increase reflects the Government’s continuing focus on cost of living and supporting those Islanders who need it the most.

Income support is a weekly benefit available to low-income families and is made up of a range of components to reflect the size and needs of each household. Components for adults and children, household expenses, private rental costs, personal care, mobility, childcare and carers will all be increased by 8.6% from 1 January 2024, subject to approval by the States Assembly. Income support tenants appropriately occupying social housing are automatically supported with the full cost of their rent.

Following the introduction of the Health Access Scheme, all adults and children in income-support households can access general practice (GP) services at heavily subsidised rates. An adult surgery consultation with a GP is fixed at £12, with no additional fee for blood tests, letters of referral and similar services. This fee has not increased since the scheme was introduced in 2020. Given the support now available through the Health Access Scheme, the clinical cost component – which was designed to help with the full cost of GP visits, is being maintained at its current rate.

Deputy Elaine Millar said: “I am really pleased to be putting forward this comprehensive package of income support increases, which will enhance the support provided to low-income families. The ‘low income RPI’ figure peaked at 8.6% in March 2023 and reduced to 6.4% in June, with the downward trend set to continue. Providing an increase based on the highest point of recent low income RPI values will make sure that income-support households are protected over the coming year.”

The annual cost of the increased components is estimated at £7.9m, with the budget provided for in the 2024 Government plan

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