§ Mr. P. MEEHAN
asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland if John Walsh, of Stradally, Queen's County, No. 1,570 in pension officer's register, district Kildare, Maryborough station, was deprived of his old age pension, although over seventy years old and having no visible means, because he continued to work for 6s. per week wages and his board and lodging; whether labourers in Ireland who attain 788 the age of seventy years will in future be deprived of their old age pensions or part of same unless they cease to work; whether it is intended that such persons should be penalised because they continue to work in this crisis when every man's labour is necessary for the production of food; and whether old age pensioners in Ireland who patriotically resume work to help in the production of food will have their pensions reduced or withdrawn on account of the wages earned by their resumed labour?
§ Mr. DUKE
John Walsh was not in receipt of an old age pension. A claim for a pension was refused on the ground that his means exceeded the statutory limits. The recent administrative concessions do not apply to claimants. Old age pensioners are not deprived of their pension if they resume work, provided their wages do not exceed 20s. a week in rural districts or 30s. a week in urban districts, and they have no appreciable means in addition to their earnings.
§ 52. Mr. HUGH LAW
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether the increase of old age pension has been refused in a number of cases in Ireland; and whether, having regard to the strict investigation made in all such cases before payment of the original pension was sanctioned and to the universal rise in food prices, now 84 per cent, above those obtaining before the War, the Government is prepared to recommend a grant of the 2s. 6d. increase in all cases in which the right to old age pension has already been established, or may be established in the future, during the continuance of hostilities?
§ Mr. BALDWIN (Lord of the Treasury)
My right hon. Friend has asked me to answer this question. I fear that I cannot add anything to my previous replies on this subject.