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Old-Age Non-Pensioners

Volume 721: debated on Monday 22 November 1965

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asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance what proposals the Government have to remedy the position of the old-age non-pensioners; and how many such persons are estimated by her Department to be now living in the United Kingdom.

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance what steps she will take to improve the position of old-age non-pensioners; and if she will make a statement.

I estimate that there are about 435,000 persons in the United Kingdom, including about 35,000 in Northern Ireland, who are over pensionable age and are not eligible for a pension from my Department. A large number of these are in receipt of National Assistance, or a non-contributory old-age pension, supplemented in some cases by National Assistance, and the scale rates of National Assistance were increased substantially earlier this year. I have recently taken further special action to try to ensure that all old people who are in need and entitled to help from the National Assistance Board know of their rights and avail themselves of them.

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance what is her estimate of the annual cost of granting retirement pensions at the present standard rate to all persons in Wales who are in the category of non-pensioners; and what would be the approximate consequential saving in National Assistance grants.

I would refer the hon. Member to the replies which I gave to him earlier this afternoon on this matter.

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance, how many elderly persons were in the category of non-pensioners at the latest convenient date; and how many elderly persons were in that category five years ago.

At 30th June, 1965 and 30th June, 1960 about 400,000 and about 725,000 people respectively in Great Britain were over pensionable age and were not eligible for any pension from my Department.