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Mental Capacity Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 10:00 pm on 1st February 2005.

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Photo of Lord Pearson of Rannoch Lord Pearson of Rannoch Conservative 10:00 pm, 1st February 2005

I am advised that there are some 160,000 people with severe and profound learning disabilities in the country at the moment. If the Minister is right—and I have no reason to doubt it—and 20 per cent of them are unbefriended, then in the category I am speaking about alone it comes to some 32,000 people. I do not query the noble Baroness's percentage, but it seems quite high to me that one in five should be unbefriended. If that is so, it gives one the nature and the scale of the tragedy.