MEP asks for clarification on benefits22ND SEPTEMBER 2010: THERE's an email doing the rounds that has upset a number of Nick Griffin's constituents in the North West of England.
Many have contacted their MEP to ask him to find out whether there is any truth in the claim made with regard to a significant disparity in benefits between pensioners and newly arrived immigrants.
"People want an answer and quickly so that the email can be dismissed as just mishief-making, or something that needs to be highlighted," says Constituency Office Manager Tina Wingfield.
"So I have written to the Department of Work and Pensions Ministers to ask for clarification."
This is the letter:
"Nick Griffin, MEP has been contacted by a number of his constituents with regard to benefits information that is being widely circulated via the internet.
I reproduce the information they have received below.
BENEFITS - BRITISH OLD AGED PENSIONER
Weekly allowance - £100
Weekly Spouse allowance - £25
Additional weekly hardship allowance - £0.00
TOTAL YEARLY BENEFIT - £6,000
BENEFITS - IMMIGRANTS / REFUGEES LIVING IN BRITAIN
Weekly allowance - £250
Weekly Spouse allowance - £225
Additional weekly hardship allowance - £100
TOTAL YEARLY BENEFIT - £29,900
Mr Griffin’s constituents - mainly pensioners - have voiced their shock and concern at the disproportionate benefit allowances that appear to be available to immigrants and refugees living in Britain, in comparison with British old age pensioners. They have asked him to ascertain whether the figures quoted are correct, and if so, what justification the Department for Works and Pensions provides for such disproportionality.
To enable him to respond to his constituents’ queries, Mr Griffin would be grateful if you could confirm if the chart below presents an accurate summary of current benefit allowances. If the figures are correct, can you please explain the rationality behind such a discrepancy in benefit allowances?
If the information is not correct, can you please provide accurate benefit allowance levels?
Mr Griffin looks forward to a prompt response and thanks you for your assistance with this matter."