A number of constituents have contacted me about Attendance Allowance.
Government is currently considering a range of ideas for the future of local government. I welcome the fact that more power and more responsibilities are being handed to local authorities.
One area which is being looked at carefully is how we care for people in later life, including people who would currently be supported through Attendance Allowance.
Proposals on giving local authorities more responsibility in this regard have been part of a wider consultation process for devolving more responsibilities to local government. This consultation will report back in due course.
Let me reassure you that the policy proposal which has been consulted on for devolving these responsibilities to local authorities includes a provision for protecting Attendance Allowance payments for current claimants.
That means nobody already receiving Attendance Allowance would lose their entitlement or see their benefits fall in cash terms.
The proposal is simply a potential way of giving more power to local communities. It would mean that decisions on precisely how to spend that money to support older people with care needs would be taken at a local level, rather than in Whitehall.
As I have explained, this is still only an idea which the Government has raised and no decision has yet been made. I hope, however, that I have at least been able to provide some reassurance on this matter, and I await the results of the consultation process.