§ 29. Mr. Dobbie
asked the Minister of Health whether, in view of the inadequate standard of life that the existing pension gives to those in receipt of same, he will consider taking such steps as may be necessary to bring about an alteration in the Old Age Pensions Act which will have for its purpose the raising of the pensions paid and the standard of life of the recipients?
§ The Minister of Health (Mr. Ernest Brown)
I would remind my hon. Friend that under the Old Age and Widows' Pensions Act, 1940, an old age pensioner is eligible for a supplementary pension according to his needs and that the amount of any such pension is determined under Regulations which have been approved by both Houses of Parliament.
§ 37. Mr. Price
asked the Minister of Health whether, in view of the increased cost of living since the outbreak of war, he will consider a flat-rate increase in the old age pension without a means test?
§ Mr. Brown
I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply given to my hon. Friend the Member for West Leyton (Mr. Sorensen) on 20th January.
§ Mr. Price
Is the Minister satisfied that the present basis takes into consideration the increased cost of living?
§ Mr. Brown
That is another question, but I have at various times answered similar questions, and my hon. Friend will have seen that that is one of the items that is kept under constant review by the Assistance Board.
§ Mr. Mathers
Is the Minister aware of the growing public feeling that there ought to be a subsistence guaranteed to old age pensioners on an independent basis?