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Volume 640: debated on Monday 8 May 1961

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asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance whether he is aware that widows in their fifties, whose late husbands were not contributors to National Insurance, do not get a pension, and that if they do part-time work they have to pay full insurance for the whole year, including the weeks when they are not employed; and what steps he proposes to take to remedy the position.

Yes. As National Insurance is a contributory scheme, widow's pension is not payable to the widows of men who did not pay contributions. These ladies are therefore in the same position as regards payment of contributions as other people not drawing benefit. I have no proposals for legislation to amend the law on this point.