Social assistance

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Teaser 13.05

Social assistance in Switzerland

Social assistance is a last-resort benefit. It includes measures to help recipients to be financially independent and socially integrated, to prevent them from falling into poverty.
The recipients statistics enable the social assistance rate to be calculated and describe the socio-demographic structure of recipients, their financial situation and the amount of benefits received.

Teaser 13

Poverty indicator NFE

The poverty indicator is based on the social assistance statistics. It is a partial indicator for the compensation of socio-demographic burdens as part of the system of fiscal equalisation between the Confederation and the cantons (NFE).

At a glance

While the social assistance rate, i.e. the rate of economic social assistance in the narrow sense has hardly changed in recent years, the number of social assistance beneficiaries has risen. The reason for this apparently contradictory trend is that over the same period the resident population has also increased.

The main indicators of social assistance statistics
Indicator   Year
Social assistance rate (financial social assistance) 3.3%
2016
Share of short-term beneficiaries of financial social assistance (up to one year, closed case) 51.2%
2016
Average duration of social assistance benefits (median, current case) 23 months 2016
Net expenditure on social assistance in a broader sense 8,184 MM CHF  2016
Net expenditure on financial social assistance 2,722 MM CHF 2016
Annual net expenditure on financial social assistance per beneficiary 9,961 CHF 2016
Social assistance rate in a broader sense 9.6%
2014
Sources: Statistics on social assistance recipients, finance statistics of social assistance in a broader sense, inventory of social assistance in a broader sense

Further information

Press releases

Statistical sources and concepts

On this topic

Recipients of means-tested social benefits

Key indicators on recipients of financial social assistance broadly defined

Expenditure for social assistance

Financial statistics provide information on net expenditure on social assistance and other means-tested social benefits in Switzerland.

Inventory of social assistance

The inventory offers a systematic compilation of the cantonal social benefits which form part of social assistance in a broader sense.

Contact

Federal Statistical Office Sections Social Analyses and Social Welfare
Espace de l'Europe 10
CH-2010 Neuch√Ętel
Switzerland

Contact

Remark

Our English pages offer only a limited range of information on our statistical production. For our full range please consult our pages in French and German (top right hand screen).

https://www.bfs.admin.ch/content/bfs/en/home/statistics/social-security/social-assistance.html