Welfare Reform Bill

Part of Tied Public Houses (Code of Practice) – in the House of Commons at 12:52 pm on 9th March 2011.

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Photo of Iain Duncan Smith Iain Duncan Smith The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 12:52 pm, 9th March 2011

I thank the right hon. Gentleman—although I am not sure: is he a right hon. Gentleman? [ Interruption. ] An hon. Gentleman—okay. That is something that his party should do—it is not for me—given his record of service.

Yes, I accept that there were issues. In fact, when we looked at the decisions taken at the time of the spending review, I reviewed the matter, after discussing it with the Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, my hon. Friend Maria Miller, who is the Minister responsible for these matters. We visited lots of care homes—my hon. Friend went out to see people and talk to them—and we realised that there was a lot of chaos out there about what should be given to people in care homes, what care homes themselves provide, and what local authorities believe it is their statutory responsibility to provide. Some of them say that they do not have any such responsibility to provide mobility services, but others say that they do, and provide access to such services.

We have therefore changed the provisions in the Bill, as Mr Sheerman has probably noticed. That will be incorporated in the review of disability living allowance. Our objective is to get rid of the overlaps, genuinely to find out what can be provided at local level, and to figure out what the amount should be to support someone in a care home, bearing in mind that mobility needs in a care home are likely to be variable, and different from the needs of someone living in the community completely independently. Adjustments will be necessary, but my hon. Friend and I give the hon. Gentleman and the House an undertaking that we are going to try to figure out what the right answer is. We will work out a set of figures, and how they can be applied. That is the purpose of the review; I guarantee that.