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Volume 154: debated on Monday 22 May 1922

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asked the Minister of Pensions whether the reported decision of the Ministry to stop all further grants from public funds to local war pensions committees, or such other committees as may be set up in their place under the new area scheme, is final, or will he reconsider this matter; and whether he will consider the enlarging of the advisory committees under Section 3 of the Act of 1921 to 30 members, 15 of whom should be elected by regions from the new area committees, to meet the feeling of want of representation on these committees by many ex-service men?

During the re-organisation of areas under the provisions of the War Pensions Act, 1921, existing local committees will continue to be supplied with funds by the Ministry; but as no financial duties or responsibilities are imposed upon new war pensions committees established under that Act, no occasion arises to make grants to the latter bodies. My right, hon. Friend is not prepared to increase the membership of the Central Advisory Committee in the manner suggested—that would tend to make it unwieldy and unsuitable for the purposes for which it, has been established. Of a total membership of 18, no less than 10 have served in the forces (of whom 4 are representatives of the British Legion), and of the remaining 8, 4 are members of the regional advisory councils or local committees.