HC Deb 16 April 1962 vol 658 c16
19. Mr. Ross

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance if he will state in money terms the difference between the average weekly earnings of an adult male worker and the retirement pension payable in respect of a husband and wife at the most recent available date; and if he will give the same figures for October, 1951, October, 1955, and October. 1959, respectively.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

The difference in October, 1961, was 214s., and the corresponding figures for 1951, 1955 and 1959 were, respectively, 116s., 158s. and 191s. These figures being, as requested, in money terms do not, of course, reflect either changes in the value of money, or the real relationships between earnings and pensions.

22. Mr. J. Bennett

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance, what increase would be required in the single rate of retirement pension to represent the same proportion of average earnings as it did in April, 1961.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

On the basis of the latest available information about current earnings, approximately 1s. 1d. for men and 9d. for women.

Mr. Bennett

May I ask a very simple question? Is the Minister satisfied that the present rate of pension is adequate to meet present-day needs?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

As I have already told the House, the present rate of pension is better than at any time before April last year. Therefore, while with good and responsible government one can hope for progressive improvements, the pensioner is a great deal better looked after now than he has ever been before.