HC Deb 22 April 1915 vol 71 cc380-1

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he will explain who is to blame for not placing Irish railway employés on the same footing as their British colleagues in reference to Government war allowances?


The Government has made no war allowances to railway employés. Under the Regulation of the Forces Act, 1871, possession has been taken by the Government of most of the railways in Great Britain, and under an arrangement as to the compensation of the companies owning those railways a portion of the war bonus granted by them to the employés falls to be paid by the Government. The Irish railways have not been taken possession of, and no question of the Government bearing a portion of any war bonus that may be granted on these railways can therefore arise.


As the Irish railway employés have been constantly overworked night and day with the transport of troops, does not the right hon. Gentleman feel that it is his duty to see that they are fairly recompensed?


I cannot answer without notice as to the amount of time that has been worked by the railway employés in Ireland. I understand that the trade union representing the employés have made a request to the various Irish railway companies, and the matter is now the subject of negotiations.