HC Deb 31 July 1974 vol 878 cc398-9W
Mr. Wigley

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if she will take steps to ensure that those widowed before reaching the age of 50 years receive full pension.

Mr. O'Malley

No. In accordance with the principle contained in the Beveridge Report widows' benefits have regard to the likelihood of the widow being able to re-enter the employment field. For this reason a widow who was under 40 when widowed or when widowed mother's allowance ceased does not receive a widow's pension; and a widow who was between 40 and 50 at that time receives a pension on a sliding scale related to her age.