HC Deb 10 May 1965 vol 712 cc28-9
40. Mr. Carmichael

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance if National Assistance Board officers verify the actual rent charged for accommodation; and if this information is made available on request to the local rent tribunals.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Pensions and National Insurance (Mr. Norman Pentland)

The answer to the first part of the Question is "Yes", Sir. As regards the second part, information given by a person in connection with his application is regarded as confidential, but the Board would be prepared to make the information given about rent available to a rent tribunal on request if the applicant agreed.

Mr. Carmichael

I thank my hon. Friend for that Answer. Does he realise that in many parts of the country, particularly in my constituency of Glasgow, Woodside, many people do not have a rent book. In many cases the landlord has refused to provide one. They are on National Assistance. Can my hon. Friend give me any details of the type of verification or confirmation of the rent charged which takes place?

Mr. Pentland

Where an applicant for assistance does not have a rent book, he is asked to obtain one from his landlord or at least to get a receipt for the rent he is paying. Failing this, the Board's officer may be able to obtain confirmation of the rent paid from the landlord or the agent.

Mr. Lipton

Will my hon. Friend ask the National Assistance Board to prepare annually accurate figures showing how much of the National Assistance grant is being paid by way of rent?

Mr. Pentland

My right hon. Friend will have heard my hon. Friend's supplementary question.

Forward to