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Invalidity Pension

Volume 931: debated on Tuesday 10 May 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many married women are expected to claim the non-contributory invalidity pension.

As explained in the House of Commons Paper No. 276 on Social Security Provision for Chronically Sick and Disabled People, issued in 1974, such estimates of the number of incapacitated housewives as can be made depend on the 1968–69 survey "Handicapped and Impaired in Great Britain". The survey suggests that, net of those for whom a dependency increase is in payment, some 40,000 women below pension age with husbands at work may be incapable both of paid work and their normal household duties. These women are likely to benefit from the non-contributory invalidity pension when it is extended to married women in November 1977. The figure of 40,000 is the best estimate we can make of the number of married women who will successfully claim the pension. Any estimate of the total number of claimants would be wholly conjectural.