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Old People

Volume 395: debated on Thursday 2 December 1943

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35.

asked the Minister of Health, whether, in any future plans for housing, he will consider the provision of a percentage of almshouses in country towns and villages for old people?

The Sub-Committee of the Central Housing Advisory Committee under the Chairmanship of Lord Dudley, is giving special attention to the type of accommodation most suitable for old people, and my right hon. Friend will certainly give advice to local authorities on this very important matter when he has considered the Sub-committee's report.

Would the hon. Lady impress on local authorities that such accommodation must be in an accessible position, and will she bear in mind that some of them made the most crashing mistakes? I hope she will do more than advise them and that she will almost compel them.

Will the hon. Lady consider if this praiseworthy aim is adopted, the objection to the word "almshouses"? In my opinion it is objectionable.

I will take note of that, but I think that people's opinions differ. I think we may be able to call such houses one name in one place and another in another, according to local feelings.

Are we to understand that the post-war policy of the Ministry of Health is to segregate old people into separate dwellings rather than to leave them among the rest of the population?

No, I think if the hon. Member will look at the reply, he will see that we are calling attention to the type of accommodation most suitable for old people.

Will the hon. Lady take as an example the houses provided by Glasgow Corporation just outside Glasgow as an indication of what can be done?

There are several very good examples. I could tell the hon. Member of a very good one in Dundee.