5. Mr. FREDERICK HALL
(Dulwich) asked the Home Secretary if any recent inquiries have been made to ascertain that the graduated allowances for rent to constables in the Metropolitan police force approximate to the relative cost of rent obtaining in the different districts in London; if 2s. 6d. is allowed in such districts as Westminster, Holborn, and the Strand, and 2s. in Whitechapel and Lambeth, where numerous working-class dwellings are situated; if the allowance in such districts as Greenwich, Deptford, and Woolwich, on the other hand, is only ls. 6d.; if the allowance for Lambeth throughout, including the portions of the borough situated in the outlying portion of London adjacent to the county boundary, is 2s.; if there has been any recent increase in the amounts of rent allowances to correspond with the increased cost of living; and if he will cause an inquiry to be made into the whole question, with a view to more equitable arrangements being made?
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
These allowances are graduated as stated by the hon. Member. The graduation was determined a few years ago after consideration of the rent actually paid by every individual officer of the rank concerned. That the rates are generally equitable would appear to be indicated by the fact that many officers elect to live in areas carrying the lower allowance so as to have the advantage of the lower rents there prevailing. My right hon. Friend is not aware that there has been any such recent increase in rent in particular areas as would justify a readjustment of the allowances thus paid; but should facts be brought to his notice which would warrant a readjustment, he would be prepared to consider the matter.
Mr. F. HALL
Is the Home Office prepared to consider the question of making an all-round allowance of 2s. 6d. a week, 11 considering that in many localities a higher rent has to be paid than is allowed for in, for instance, the grant of ls. 6d. a week?
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
The effect of a uniform rate would be that other matters would have to be considered.