HC Deb 12 November 1917 vol 99 cc21-2
41. Major DAVIES

asked the Pensions Minister whether, in view of the urgency and importance of proper provision for the medical treatment of discharged soldiers, he will take steps that will enable the local pensions committees to furnish him with a Return setting forth the total number of men discharged from the Army in Wales and Monmouthshire, the number of those who have received special treatment, and the number who have been recommended for special training to fit them for a new employment?


In reply to a similar question put by the hon. Member on the 24th October, I expressed the hope that he would not press for this information to be furnished by local war pension committees at the present time. The work of administering allowances to the wives and dependants of sailors and soldiers and of providing for the medical treatment and training of disabled men is very heavy, and a detailed Return of the nature proposed would not, in my opinion, be commensurate in value with the labour involved in preparing it. I am at frequent intervals making inquiry of the representatives of the Ministry in the provinces as to whether any difficulty is experienced in obtaining the necessary institutional accommodation or facilities for treatment or training, and the information thus obtained will enable me to meet such deficiencies as are found to exist.


Can my right hon. Friend say if one-tenth of the men who ought are now getting this training?


My difficulty is to get the men to accept the training, but as a consequence of meeting disabled soldiers and sailors in hospitals as well as in public meetings that difficulty is being overcome.


Am I right, therefore, in saying that the Ministry of Pensions is doing practically nothing with regard to the training of men?