DWP Central Freedom of Information
Our Ref: 2014-
06 January 2014
Dear Agustin Palacio,
Thank you for your Freedom of Information request received on 8 December 2014.
You asked: “I would like to know:
- What is the unemployment rate (monthly) between European Union people in the West
Midlands (WM), from January 2014 to now. Divide it between the locals authorities of the
- How many of these people have received welfare assistance such as Jobseekers',
allowance or Disability Support Allowance' during the same period in the WM and its
- What is the average salary of EU people who are working during the same period.
- What are the ten most common jobs between EU people who are working during the
There are two main measures of unemployment.
(i) Unemployment, which is the headline figure, measures all people who meet the
internationally agreed definition of unemployment, namely those who are without a job, want a
job, are seeking a job, and are available to start work. This is measured by the Labour Force
Survey (LFS), and is not dependent on being in receipt of benefit.
(ii) The claimant count measures the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA).
This is sourced from administrative records of people being paid the benefit.
Statistics on unemployment based on the claimant count are published on the NOMIS website
the Office for National Statistics (ONS) official website of
labour market statistics, which allows you to construct your own tables.
The ONS publish LFS data as part of their Labour Market statistics releases found here: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/lms/labour-market-statistics/index.html
The responsibility for these statistics lies with the ONS, if you require further breakdowns,
information on how to submit a freedom of information request to ONS can be found via the
following link: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/about-ons/what-we-do/FOI/how-to-make-a-foi-
Data on nationality is not routinely published, as the source systems used to capture and
process benefit claims typically do not include a nationality marker. For contributory benefits,
nationality is not a qualifying factor, as eligibility is determined by the National Insurance
contributions that the claimant has made.
For other income related benefits where residency conditions apply and the claimant must be
lawfully resident in the UK, nationality is a factor. Once residency has been determined,
nationality is not required for further processing and is therefore not routinely held on DWP
computer systems. Therefore full information on nationality is not available and the information
we do hold is not readily available from datasets available for analysis.
In response to your first two questions, we can confirm that the Department does hold some
information falling within the description specified in your request. However, we estimate that
the cost of complying with your request would exceed the appropriate limit of £600.
The appropriate limit has been specified in regulations and for central Government it is set at
£600. This represents the estimated cost of one person spending 3½ working days in
determining whether the Department holds the information, and locating, retrieving and
extracting the information. Under section 12 of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) the
Department is not obliged to comply with your request and we will not be processing your
Under section 16 of the FOIA we are obliged to assist you in providing options to narrow your
request, by reforming or refocusing it, so that it will fall beneath the cost limit. In this case our
advice would be to narrow your question so that it only asks for the number of people in local
authorities in the West Midlands who were EU nationals at the time they registered for a
National Insurance number (NINo) and were claiming a working age benefit at February 2014,
by client group.
Further information on NINo allocations to overseas nationals and client groups can be found
A document within this collection showing nationality at point of NINo registration of DWP
working age benefit recipients (February 2014, which is the latest data available) can be
accessed via the link below and may be of interest:
In response to your last two questions regarding salaries and most common jobs for EU
people, this information is not held by the Department.
You may find it useful to know that the Office for National Statistics (ONS) publish some
statistics on Migrant Workers which can be found here: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/migration1/migration-statistics-quarterly-report/index.html
The responsibility for these statistics lies with the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Information on how to submit a freedom of information request to ONS can be found via the
link below. http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/about-ons/what-we-do/FOI/how-to-make-a-foi-request/index.html
If you have any queries about this letter please contact us quoting the reference number
DWP Central FoI Team
Your right to complain under the Freedom of Information Act
If you are not happy with this response you may request an internal review by e-mailing email@example.com
or by writing to DWP, Central FoI Team,
Caxton House, Tothill Street, SW1H 9NA. Any review request should be submitted within two
months of the date of this letter.
If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review you may apply directly to the
Information Commissioner’s Office for a decision. Generally the Commissioner cannot make a
decision unless you have exhausted our own complaints procedure. The Information
Commissioner can be contacted at: The Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House,
Water Lane, Wilmslow Cheshire SK9 5AF www.ico.gov.uk