Levelling out of social assistance recipients
Social conditions, welfare and crime;Public sector;Immigration and immigrants
soshjelpk, Social assistance, social assistance recipients, social assistance, qualification programme, assistant status, social services, duration of support, support cases, type of support (allowance, loan), personnel in the social services (for example social workers, child welfare officers, office employees), operating costsKOSTRA , Social security and benefits , Social conditions, welfare and crime, Social conditions, welfare and crime, Public sector, Immigration and immigrants

Social assistance2008



This is an archived release.

Go to latest release

Levelling out of social assistance recipients

The decrease in the number of social assistance recipients levelled out in 2008, and total payments were down by only 1.5 per cent.

2008 marked a shift in the long period of downward trends in the consumption of social assistance administered by the municipalities1. A total of 109 300 persons received a total of NOK 4.34 billion in social assistance. The number of recipients was down by only a few hundred since last year, and payments were also only slightly down, by NOK 70 million, or 1.5 per cent.

Payments are higher in cities than in rural areas

A total of 2.3 per cent of the Norwegian population received social assistance in 2008. The number of recipients per inhabitant was about twice as high in the northern county of Finnmark compared to Akershus, the county surrounding the capital. Payments per recipient in larger cities are 2.5 times more than payments in rural areas.

The composition of the recipients is relatively stable compared to last year. Recipients below 30 years of age accounted for about 30 per cent of recipients, the age group 30-39 accounted for 25 per cent and the age group 40-67 for 40 per cent. Over time, the number of recipients below 30 years of age has decreased in comparison with recipients aged 40-67, while the middle group 30-39 has maintained a stable share of recipients.

Increase in average disbursement

Average disbursement per person per year have increased markedly over the last 20 years. In 2008, average disbursement per person were NOK 37 400 per year, while the corresponding figure in 1987 was NOK 27 600 (stable prices).

1The years 2002-2004 showed a slight increase in the number of social assistance recipients. For the years 2003 and 2004, participants in the introductory programme for newly arrived immigrants are included in the statistics.