290,000 persons have benefited from 17 social measures in an expenditure of €1,600 million

Thousands of families and pensioners have this year benefited between them by €1,600 million in social benefits, some of which have been introduced this year when announced in the last Budget.

The Minister for Solidarity and Social Justice, Michael Falzon, said that up to June his Ministry has implemented 91% of the 2021 Budget and maintained this is a great confirmation the Government has a strong social conscience and is making a difference to the lives of people.

It is estimated that during this year 290,000 people have benefited from 17 social measures implemented by the Government and between them have received €1,600 million.

While explaining this Budget 2021 social expenditure the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry, Mark Musu’, said that 54% of the Government’s expenditure, amounting to €6,500 million will go toward pensions and social benefits.

Regarding social benefits, he said that just less than 7,000 persons are receiving Social Assistance with some receiving more than one benefit. During the first six months, over and above the Children’s Allowance that reached about €19 million, 42,600 families have already received €1.75 million. By the end-of-year the Children’s Allowance is expected to reach €42 million. Another new benefit launched is that of a Carer Grant receiving €300 annually to compensate that instead of employment they look after disabled children aged over 16. By the end of June, 400 parents had applied for this grant.

Minister Falzon said the Government has continued to roll up its sleeves to make a difference to the lives of people through appropriate benefits.

He said that by November his Ministry will implement the final remaining measures reaching €10 million in payments to 5,500 persons for those who were employed, or to their inheritors, who were engaged in a corps before 1979 or were employed by the Gas Board and later entered the Public Service.