HC Deb 09 December 1920 vol 135 cc2385-6
2. Colonel ASHLEY

asked the Minister of Pensions upon what lines the Departmental Committee of Inquiry into the administration of pensions and other grants has been constituted, and why representatives of ex-service men's organisations have not been appointed as members; whether he will consider a medification of the constitution of the Committee in order that representation may be given to the Comrades of the Great War and the Federation of Discharged Sailors and Soldiers; and whether he will insist that any representatives of ex-service men's organisations who may be appointed shall be qualified as laid down in the War Pensions Act by being discharged as disabled?

The MINISTER of PENSIONS (Mr. Macpherson)

The Departmental Committee of Inquiry is, in accordance with the usual practice composed of such persons, as in the judgment of the Minister, are best qualified to advise him upon the subject under investigation. I indicated in the reply given by me on the 25th November to the hon. Member for Kingswinford that at least one member of the Committee is, in fact, a member of the Federation of Discharged and Demobilised Sailors and Soldiers. The Committee has been in Session for some time and it would not be practicable to add members to it now. Any further additions would make it unwieldy. I have other opportunities of meeting the representatives of the ex- service organisations at regular intervals and hearing their views. I may add that the Departmental Committee will be glad to hear evidence from any, or all, of the associations referred to by my hon. and gallant Friend, and invitations with this object have already been addressed to them.