asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is his Department's guideline planning figure to local authority for day centre places for adult mentally handicapped persons; what is the actual ratio per 1,000 persons of places at present provided in England and Wales; and what are the corresponding figures for the South-West Region and Cornwall, respectively.
The planning targets for local authority adult training centre places were set out in the White Paper "Better Services for the Mentally Handicapped" published in 1971. These proposed a build-up over 20 years to approximately 150 places per 100,000 population by about 1991. Because it was recognised at the time that some authorities had greater gaps in their services to make up than others it was left to each authority to work out its own programme and no timetable was set by which individual progress could be judged year by year.Using mid-1975 population figures the total of places provided in England by 31st March 1976 represented 0·76 places per 1,000 population. The figures per 1,000 population for the South-West Region and Cornwall were 0·70 and 0·40, respectively.