HC Deb 03 December 1931 vol 260 cc1240-1
44. Mr. J. JONES

asked the Minister of Health the number of men aged 65 or over, with wives not yet 65, who are in receipt of an old age pension and have no other source of income; and if he will consider such amendments to the Widows', Orphans', and Old Age Contributory Pensions Act, 1925, as will make possible the payment of a pension to the wife under 65 of an old age pensioner who is unable to obtain employment of an amount equal to that payable for an adult dependant under unemployment insurance?


As the hon. Member is doubtless aware, an old age pension payable to an insured person is not subject to a means test, and even if it were possible to estimate the number of married pensioners whose wives have not yet reached the age of 65, in itself a task of considerable difficulty, it would be quite impossible to ascertain or compute the number of them who have no other source of income than the pension. The answer to the second part of the question is in the negative. The addition suggested would entirely change the character of the pensions payable under the Act of 1925 which, not being associated with earnings or other means, are not now subject to revision with any change in the circumstances of the recipients.