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Pensions And Grants

Volume 416: debated on Thursday 29 November 1945

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21.

asked the Minister of Pensions whether, in his review of disability pensions, he will consider raising the present maximum constant attendance allowance of 20s. a week to a higher figure, as the present allowance is inadequate under present conditions.

24.

asked the Minister of Pensions if he is now prepared to reconsider the formula, "fit for service—fit for pension," in view of the conclusion of general hostilities.

25.

asked the Minister of Pensions whether it is his intention to remove the condition regarding war pensions, that an allowance can only be awarded in respect of a child born before or within nine months of the date on which the injury to the parent is sustained.

27.

asked the Minister of Pensions if he will now revise the Third Schedule of the Royal Warrant and increase the gratuities payable for specified minor injuries to bring these into line with the scales now proposed for injured workers under the Industrial Injuries Bill.

30.

asked the Minister of Pensions if he will consider increasing the amount of disability pensions paid to ex-Servicemen and, in particular, the advisability of granting an extra allowance to those suffering from complaints the nature of which requires a special diet.

31.

asked the Minister of Pensions if he is proposing to raise the sum of £2 l0s. a week, the present pension for a Serviceman totally disabled in this war.

As the hon. Members arc no doubt aware, the whole question of War Pensions is at present under review, and in these circumstances I am not in a position to make a statement on any particular aspect.

Will the' Minister consider the pensions of the 200 people who have lost both their hands and sight during the war, and try to help them?

Pending the Government's decision, would the Minister do his best to acceler- ate the hearing of appeals by the tribunals, some of which have been outstanding for 12 months?

Is the Minister aware that there is a feeling of general dissatisfaction at the disability allowance paid at the present time, and will he take steps to improve the standard?

Can the Minister say whether it will be possible for him to remove some of these anomalies by administrative action now?

23.

asked the Minister of Pensions if he will undertake that all future proposals respecting war pensions and allowances will be published as a White Paper so as to allow of Parliamentary discussion before they are embodied in a Royal Warrant.

:It has commonly been the practice to announce major changes in the war pensions code in the form of a White Paper. As the hon. Member is, however, aware, many minor improvements have been made from time to time, and the issue of a White Paper would not in my view be necessary or appropriate in such circumstances.

:In view of the expectation that major changes will shortly be made, will the Minister promise to do that by way of a White Paper, so that we nay discuss them?

26.

asked the Minister of Pensions why Sapper Frank Edwards of 34 Pembroke Street, Cowley Road, Oxford, who was discharged on 27th March, 1945, with a 30 per cent. disability pension has not yet received any money.

:I regret that this case was unduly delayed. However, a pension order book has now been sent to Mr. Edwards with a postal draft for representing the arrears.

While I thank the Minister for his frank reply, can he say whether he has looked into the question as to whether similar cases may not be happening, and has he taken any steps to see that they are not?

I think that I can rightly say that this is a very exceptional case. I am however very worried about it, and I am looking into the matter.

28.

asked the Minister of Pensions whether in view of the increased cost of living, he will effect a percentage increase in disablement pensions granted to 1914-1918 ex-Servicemen.

I would refer the hon. Member to my reply to the hon. Member for Kingston-upon-Thames (Major Boyd-Carpenter) on 11th October last, of which I am sending him a copy.

29.

asked the Minister of Pensions whether he will consider the granting of token cash pensions to parents of those killed on active service, so that their claim for a pension for the loss of a son or daughter would be established when, and if, they became dependent and in need.

I would refer the hon. Member to my reply to him on the l0th November, to which I need only add that a cash payment is not necessary for the purpose indicated in the Question.

Is the Minister aware of the widespread feeling that there is on this matter; and is it not a fact that after the 1914-18 war, disability pensions were paid in these cases?