asked the Minister of Pensions how many men and women, respectively, have been dismissed, after due notice, from his Department in Blackpool on the grounds of inefficiency since 1st January, 1947; and, of these, how many had been awarded increments of pay during 1946.
The figures asked for in the first part of the Question are 41 and 24, respectively. Of these 38 men and 22 women received the normal annual increment during 1946.
Is it not rather odd that a man should be given an increment of pay in 1946 on the ground that he is efficient and then, at the beginning of 1947, be sacked on the ground that he has been inefficient for a long time?
Not at all. There are two degrees of inefficiency involved here. The increments are a question of the conditions of service, with which we hesitate to interfere unless there is real inefficiency When it comes to dismissing people on the ground of redundancy of staff, we have to take account of any degree of inefficiency in order to get the least efficient out first.
Will the hon. Gentleman see that those who are dismissed on the ground of redundancy are not sent away with a bad reference?
I am not aware that they are, but if that is the case, I will certainly look into it.