§ 64. Mr. FINNEY
asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office whether his attention has been called to the case of Frank Siddall, 10th North Staffordshire, No. 18161, who died at Rugeley Camp 30th January, 1916, and was returned as a consumptive although he had never suffered from this disease before; whether he is aware that this man left a widow and three young children, the family receiving 23s. for six months after his death, when it was discontinued and the widow was informed that nothing further could be done for her, and that she is now receiving Poor Law relief; whether he is aware that Thomas Lewin Nixon, 2/5th North Staffordshire, No. 3589, length of service one year and 159 days, was discharged as no longer fit for war service on the 13th March, 1916; that he met with an accident whilst in training and was sent to Cambridge Hospital for an operation; that there are four young children; that the man received 5s. for six months, which has been discontinued; and that he has been reduced to Poor Law relief; and whether, as these men have died or become incapacitated in the country's service, he will say what steps he intends to take to ensure that they or their dependants shall receive adequate allowances from the National Exchequer instead of being thrown on Poor Law assistance?
§ Mr. FORSTER
Inquiries are being made, and I will inform my hon. Friend of the result in due course.
§ 66. Mr. PRINGLE
asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office whether Mrs. Annie F. Douglas, the widowed mother of Second-Lieutenant Andrew Douglas, 3rd (attached 2nd) Black Watch, who died of wounds in Mesopotamia on 19th February, has been refused a pension; if so, on what ground the refusal is based; and whether this decision will be reviewed?
§ Mr. FORSTER
The ground of the refusal is that this officer's mother was not dependent upon him, and I regret that in the circumstances it is not possible to reconsider the decision.
§ Mr. PRINGLE
Are we to understand that in a case where parents either apprentice their children to professions or send them to universities that thereby there is no pre-war dependence, and those parents are to be penalised for the sacrifices made in the interests of their children?
§ Mr. FORSTER
The qualification for the issue of pensions out of Army funds is in accordance with the views of the Select Committee, with which the hon. Member is quite familiar.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
Is it not the case that the Statutory Committee have expressly considered these cases and are prepared to listen to any case where a ood claim can be made out?
§ 74. Mr. FINNEY
asked the Prime Minister whether the attention of the Government has bean called to a resolution of the Walstanton and Burslem Union 1712 respecting the question of soldiers and sailors who have died after joining the forces, or who have been discharged as medically unfit, and to the fact that there are cases who are not in receipt of any amount from the Government in which hardship ensues; that many cases of such soldiers and sailors or their dependants are becoming chargeable to the Poor Law, their application for pensions having been refused; that the support of such cases should not be a local charge; that, as the men were examined and passed as fit by a medical board and died or become incapacitated in the country's service, the responsibility for the support of such soldiers and sailors or their dependants should be a national one and borne by the National Exchequer; and can he state the Government's intentions respecting the same?
§ 120. Mr. FINNEY
asked the President of the Local Government Board whether his attention has been called to a resolution unanimously adopted by the Wolstanton and Burslem Union respecting the question of soldiers and sailors who have died after joining His Majesty's Forces, or who have been discharged as medically unfit for further service, and to the fact that in many cases such soldiers or sailors, or their dependants, are becoming chargeable to the Poor Law, their application for pensions having been refused; that the support of such cases should not be a local charge; that, as these men have died or become incapacitated in the country's service, the responsibility for the support of such soldiers or sailors, or their dependants, should be a national one and the charge be borne by the National Exchequer; and can he say what steps he proposes to take in the matter?