HC Deb 30 July 1962 vol 664 cc22-3W
98. Mr. G. Thomas

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance how many people in Wales and Monmouth- shire have received National Assistance grants for clothing during the years 1960 and 1961, respectively.

Mrs. Thatcher

The number of grants made by the National Assistance Board to meet exceptional needs, mostly for clothing and bedding, to persons in Wales and Monmouthshire was 22,312 in 1960 and 23,454 in 1961.

99. Sir C. Osborne

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance if he is aware that an old-age pensioner may receive only 65s. a week after having paid into the National Health Service for many years, while immigrants who have made no contribution are receiving 78s. a week National Assistance; what consideration he has given to this discrepancy when considering the level of retirement pensions for United Kingdom citizens; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. N. Macpherson

I do not accept the general validity either of my hon. Friend's figures or of the comparison he makes. In this country National Assistance is available to all irrespective of origin in accordance with need, and is calculated on the basis of scales approved by Parliament. Retirement pensions are available as of right and irrespective of resources, where contributions have been paid under the National Insurance Scheme. Recipients of retirement pensions are also eligible for National Assistance in accordance with need.

Mr. Padley

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance how many persons are in receipt of National Assistance in each of the following districts, namely, Bridgend Urban District Council, Maesteg Urban District Council, Ogmore and Garw Urban District Council, and Penybont Rural District Council; and what were the comparable figures in each of the years 1958–61.

Mrs. Thatcher

The statistics collected by the National Assistance Board relate to the whole of the area served by an area office. Separate figures are not available for the localities named, which together are served by four area offices covering, in each instance, a number of other local authority districts.