§ 32 and 33. Mr. NEWMAN
asked the Secretary to the Treasury (1) whether he is aware that since the passing of the National Insurance Act the membership of the Ancient Order of Hibernians is increasing, and that on the 11th instant the Insurance Commissioners had in their possession over 130,000 cards for members of the 972 order from Ireland and 50,000 for members residing in Great Britain; and whether he can give the name of any similar secret and political order which has applied for and obtained leave to form an approved society for its members under the terms of the National Insurance Act; (2) whether his attention has been called to a resolution passed by Cootehall, county Roscommon, branch No. 674, of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, directing that members in bad standing be expelled and their names published; whether he is aware that many insured persons have chosen a branch of the order as their approved society; and whether he will say what right is possessed by such insured member against the grand master, or other official of the order, in respect of contributions paid in the event of expulsion on the ground of political delinquency?
§ Mr. MASTERMAN
The separate section formed in connection with the organisation referred to includes about 130,000 Irish Members, in respect of whom about 115,000 cards have now been received. About 25,000 cards have been received in respect of Scottish Members, and the returns show 8,750 English Members. A number of organisations having political objects (amongst which I may mention the Orange and Protestant Friendly Society, which includes over 60,000 members) have, like the one referred to, promoted separate sections which have become approved for the purpose of administering the Act. No member can be expelled from the approved section except in accordance with the rules of the section, of which I am sending the hon. Member a copy. Any insured member has an appeal to the Insurance Commission against expulsion; and even if the expulsion were sanctioned he could take his transfer value representing approximately his original reserve value and the value of his subsequent contributions to induce another society to accept him on the same favourable terms as when he entered insurance.