§ 2. Mr. Douglas Houghton
asked the Minister of National Insurance whether he will take steps to simplify the rules and conditions of the needs test for the non-contributory pension, and meanwhile publish a simple explanation of the present conditions, together with examples.
§ Mr. Houghton
Does not the right hon. Gentleman appreciate that I am asking for something rather more than was contained in the Question asked by the hon. Member for Reigate? I am asking whether the Minister will give some examples of the complicated exercises in arithmetic which people must comprehend to know where they stand under the Old Age Pensions Act, 1936.
§ Mr. J. Enoch Powell
Will my right hon. Friend look again at the so-called explanatory leaflet? Does he feel that for the sort of people the benefits are intended a sentence like the following is intelligible:… the means of each partner are reckoned as half the combined means of the two, and each partner is allowed the benefit of the £39 deducted from means other than earnings.