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Armed Forces (Pensions And Grants)

Volume 388: debated on Thursday 1 April 1943

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asked the Minister of Pensions how many pensioners of the last war are receiving the full 100 per cent. disability pension; did his recent count which showed that 19 out of 20 of disabled men were employed full time earning good wages and doing good work for the nation cover the whole field or a sample; what was the number of 100 per cent. disabled men in the count; and how many of them were employed as described?

Rather under 24,000 pensioners of the last war are drawing disability pensions at the 100 per cent. rate. The latest count made by the Ministry of Labour and National Service showed that some 4,000 disabled men of the last war were unemployed as compared with the present total of nearly 400,000 disability pensioners. In making the statement that 19 out of 20 disabled men were now employed I added to the Ministry of Labour and National Service figure of 4,000 a further 16,000 to allow for unemployed men who might not be registered with that Department. My estimate thus covered the whole body of disabled ex-service men. I can give no indication of the distribution either of the 4,000 or of the 16,000 over the various degrees of disablement.

In the light of what I may call my right hon. Friend's sympathetic hint in the recent Debate, will he receive representations from the British Legion and others with an open mind with a view to trying to do something for the men disabled in the severest degree who are living on the subsistence line?