HC Deb 25 March 1897 vol 47 cc1306-7

I beg to ask the First Commissioner of Works whether it has been brought to his notice that an employé under the Office of Works, who was injured through the negligence of another workman when on duty at the Law Courts in December 1895, was offered the sum of £10 by the surveyor in compensation for the injury received; was the surveyor authorised to make this offer in the belief that it was sufficient compensation; and, if so, why was the sum increased to £67 15s. 8d. at a later period, all the circumstances connected with the injury being well known from the outset; and will he explain how it was that the man upon resuming work found that he was no longer an employé of the Government, but of the contractor for the Office of Works, and placed upon a lower rate of wages?


It is not the case that an offer of £10 was made to the employé injured at the Courts of Justice as compensation for personal injuries. That sum was suggested as an immediate payment for the loss of clothing, and in consideration of expenses which had been incurred during illness, and which he was not in a position to pay. Whilst incapacitated he received three months' full pay and six weeks' half pay, and has since been awarded a gratuity of £67 15s. 8d. in pursuance of the statutory enactment for such cases, besides being regularly employed on very light duties under the contractors of the Office of Works at the current rate of wages for an engineer's labourer. The amount earned is less than formerly, as he prefers not to work full time, otherwise he could earn more. There is at present no direct employment of a suitable nature which could be given him. He has never been in the position of an established employé of the Government.