§ Mr. Atkinson
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security under which category sheltered homes for the mentally ill will be denned in his forthcoming changes in board-and-lodgings allowance.
§ Mr. Peter Lloyd
Sheltered accommodation can take a variety of forms ranging from registered homes to warden-controlled flats. Some types of sheltered accommodation, usually shared housing where meals may be supplied by the landlord, are classed as lodgings or hostels for benefit purposes. From April 1989 people in lodgings will no longer rely on special payments of income support to meet their accommodation costs. Instead they will be able to receive normal income support payments and housing benefit in the same way as the majority of other claimants.
We have consulted widely on proposals to make similar changes to payments for people in hostels. We have deferred any change until after April 1989 to allow us time to examine more fully the effects on hostels' finances. An announcement will be made once final decisions have been reached.