§ 71. Mr. FRANCIS MEEHAN
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that on the death of ex-Constable M'Gee, which took place in twelve months after his forced retirement, at Manorhamilton, in August last, after an unblemished service of 28 years, his widow and nine young children were only allowed the sum of £273 from the Constabulary Force Fund; and whether, having regard to his service and that he was forced, without any assigned reason, to retire, and to his death having occurred so soon after his retirement, some further provision will be made by way of a grant or pension for the support of his widow and young weak family?
§ The CHIEF SECRETARY for IRELAND (Mr. Birrell)
The Inspector-General informs me that ex-Constable M'Gee died in August last, thirteen months after his retirement from the 1910 force. A sum of £273 was paid from the Constabulary Force Fund to his widow and seven of the children, who were within the rules of benefit. This grant was made strictly in accordance with the rules of the fund, and there is no power to increase it. There is no legal power to grant a pension to the widow of a man who had retired on pension.
73. Mr. F. HALL (Dulwich)
asked the Chief Secretary whether recruits joining the Royal Irish Constabulary for the first six months receive only 15s. a week; whether up to twenty-five years' service their pay amounts to £75 4s. per annum, or only 27s. a week; and, if so, whether he proposes and, if so, when to take the necessary steps to bring the pay of these men up to or nearly approximately the wages paid to constables in Liverpool, Manchester, and other large towns in the United Kingdom?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
The rate of pay of a constable of Royal Irish Constabulary of less than six months' service is 15s. per week, and of fifteen years, but less than twenty-five years' service 27s. per week. The maximum rate of pay of a constable is 28s. per week, equal to £72 16s. per annum. With regard to the last paragraph of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to the terms of the Bill which I introduced last Thursday dealing with the matter, and which will shortly be circulated.
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that only ten days ago he told me that the pay of an Irish constable during the first six months was £54 12s. a year?