§ Mr. Hannam
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many people have been assisted by the independent living fund since it was established; how many people he estimates will be assisted in the 1990–91 financial year; how much money is to be allocated to the fund for the 1990–91 financial year; if he envisages the fund being established on a permanent basis; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Scott
Up to the end of December 1989, the independent living fund had made 3,391 awards, including a small number of one-off payments. As my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Social Security announced on 25 October 1989, provision of more than £20 million, twice the 1989–90 level, has been allocated to the fund for the 1990–91 financial year. The wider arrangements for care in the community proposed in Cm 849, "Caring for People", to take effect in 1991 envisage care packages devised by local authorities on an individual basis. We would therefore expect that people seeking help after that date should generally be able to look to local authorities. We are consulting the fund's trustees, the Disablement Income Group and DIG (Scotland) on the experience gained from running the fund and examining whether there might be a very small group of people for whom supplementary arrangements may be necessary.