HC Deb 22 January 1942 vol 377 cc406-7
30. Mr. Leslie

asked the Minister of Health whether he has given further consideration to the requests for additional allowance to widow pensioners; and what does he propose doing to alleviate distress, especially in the case of widows with young children dependent on them?

Mr. E. Brown

I have considered this matter. On the question of the basic rate of pensions, I cannot add anything to the reply which I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for North Aberdeen (Mr. Garro Jones) on 28th November last. Supplementary assistance can be given in case of need, and the extent to which such assistance is given by way of a supplementary pension was settled by Parliament so recently as 1940. I do not think I should be justified in suggesting the introduction of further legislation at the present time.

Mr. Leslie

Are there any means whereby these distressing cases can be helped except through the local rates?

Mr. Brown

My answer covers that point. An arrangement was, of course, made as recently as last year.

Mr. G. Griffiths

Will the right hon. Gentleman consult the Minister of Pensions about the unit scheme of his which gives children 8s., whereas you give them 3s.? Have a talk to him.