§ Mr. Orme
Figures of local social services authority expenditure are not submitted in a form which makes it possible to provide detailed information of this kind. To obtain a figure for Merseyside, which is not itself a social services authority but is made up of five metropolitan districts which are social services authorities, it would be necessary to make special inquiries of these authorities to provide an answer. It is doubtful whether the authorities' records would distinguish between payments made as a result of fuel disconnections and payments made to avoid accumulation of debt, so that an approach to the authorities is unlikely to be of help.
Social services authority powers to make cash payments derive from Section 1 of the Children and Young Persons Act 1963 which allows cash payments to be made in exceptional circumstances to 286W avoid the need to take into, or keep in care, a child or children.