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Wednesday, 25 November 1959


Minister for Social Services say why the Department of Social Services adopts the principle that where an age pensioner loses his or her life partner and decides to keep on living in the home, and allows a young couple to share it for the payment of £3 a week - which goes towards payment of rates and so on - the survivor's pension can be, and in some cases has been, reduced from £9 10s. a fortnight to as low as £4 2s. a fortnight? Is it the policy of the Government and the department to require age pensioners who have suffered the sad loss of their life partners to live alone in their homes for the remainder of their lives, if they want to continue to receive the pension at the maximum rate? If this is the Government's policy is it not an inhuman one from the point of view not only of the pensioners but also of young couples seeking reasonable housing accommodation?

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