Mr. T THOMSON
I beg to move, in page 22, line 19, after the word "Britain," to insert the wordsexcept when resident in another part of His Majesty's Dominions.It seems to me an extraordinary provision coming from the Conservative Government that when a man, or woman has paid in for years to this contributory scheme, and happened to live in this country, that when going abroad or to the Colonies, they are to forego the advantage to which they have contributed for many years. It seems a new imperialist doctrine that when you go to the Colonies you are to be cut off from those benefits to which you have contributed. I should have thought that this Government would not have put in another deterrent towards people emigrating. There are a good many grounds for encouraging people to stay at home, but it does seem to me the height of folly to penalise people who are going abroad and to the Colonies by docking them of a pension to which they have contributed. I could quite understand it when pensions were on a non-contributory basis, but surely it is an entirely different thing when you are working on a contributory system, and possibly many contributions have been made to an old age pension, when for reasons possibly beyond their control, people should go abroad, and then be docked. We know of many cases where people getting on in years wish to join 2112 their sons or daughters overseas. One would have thought that that legitimate aspiration would have been encouraged. I do submit that this is a reactionary proposal and an extraordinary proposal coming from a party that calls itself the Imperialist party. I hope, therefore, that on further consideration, the Government will see their way to accept this Amendment. I do not suggest that they should continue to pay the pension—although I think there are good grounds for doing so—when people go abroad. That might be accepting too much. But when people move from one part of the Empire to another, they should be entitled to their pension, and seeing they have paid, possibly for many years, for this pension, surely they are entitled to it whether they remain here or go to the Colonies.
§ Mr. HARRIS
I beg to second the Amendment.
I like to regard the Empire as one. It has been built up as a common heritage of our people, and now we are going to impose penalties on people moving about freely throughout the commonwealth of nations which we call the British Empire. In many of these cases it will be found in practice that the children of widows will have emigrated to Canada, Australia, or New Zealand, and, when a widowed mother who wishes to join her children comes to make arrangements to travel out to them, she will find, even if she decides to go to another part of the British Empire, that the State will penalise her 2113 by withdrawing the pension to which she is entitled, not through any generosity of the State, but through contributions made by her late husband. That is a kind of anti-Empire spirit which will do much to weaken the bonds of Empire, and for a Minister bearing such a distinguished name, which has often been associated with the Imperial spirit, to impose a penalty of this kind, is a very unkind act towards the whole spirit of the British Empire.
When it is suggested, as it was in Committee, that there would be difficulties of administration, that ignores the fact that we have our direct representatives, firstly, in the Governor-General, and, secondly, in our Dominion representatives in all parts of the Empire, while, thirdly, there is our banking system, and there would be no difficulty, either by mutual arrangement through the Post Office or through one of the banks, in making the necessary payments. Such payments are made in the case of officers of the British Army who are entitled to pensions, and they or their widows can go abroad and live anywhere they like, and still draw their pensions. In the case of this contributory scheme, people are asked to join by making contributions out of their wages, and they are now going to be told that, if circumstances demand that they should emigrate to Australia, New Zealand, or Canada, they are going to lose the benefits of this Bill.
I have been one of those who, rightly or wrongly, have supported the contributory principle, because I have felt that it will involve no feeling of receiving charity or of getting a concession from the community, but that the benefits will be given as a right, in the. same way as in the case of a friendly society's benefit scheme or a commercial insurance company. I think this strikes at the very principle of the Bill, and I do hope the Minister will make this small concession, which will not cost him anything, because these benefits are rights to which the contributors are entitled by their contributions. In my view, nothing is going to weaken the links of Empire more than the imposition of penalties on emigration, making it difficult for people to move about freely, and to regard all parts of the Empire as one in fact as well as in name.
This Amendment would not in any way meet the argument which has been adduced in support of it by the two hon. Members, who have argued that pensions have been paid for, and, therefore, ought to be paid to the contributors wherever they might be. The hon. Members are making their Amendment apply to the British Dominions, and I am glad to note this new development of the Imperial spirit on those benches, even though it takes an impracticable form. Perhaps, in course of time, their education may progress, and they may do something to assist us in helping to back up the. Dominions when they are able to introduce schemes similar to that which this country is going to enjoy when this Bill becomes an Act, and when we shall be able, under Clause 23, to make reciprocal arrangements with them. All I need say-on this Amendment, which was fully debated in Committee, is that it would be impracticable to carry it out.
§ Mr. SPENCER
I deny the right of any Minister to put in a Clause of this character, in justice to those who have made the contributions. I have maintained throughout these Debates that the very word "pension" is a misnomer in this connection. It is not a pension at all, but more in the nature of an annuity, because it is bought jointly by the workman and the employer, with a small contribution by the State. Legislation of this kind is the worst form of bureaucracy that you can have. We on this side of the House are sometimes accused of being desirous of setting up a great bureaucracy in connection with nationalisation, but I should never agree to a form of bureaucracy in which there were three parties making contributions, whether in money, labour or services, and in which the party making the least contribution claimed the right to dictate. That is what the Government are claiming in this instance. They claim by this Clause, if it is carried to its logical conclusion, to have the right to say to a man or a woman, (hat if they go abroad their pension is stopped. The Clause says:A sum shall not be paid on account of a pension—(a) to or in respect of any person while that person is absent from Great Britain.It is conceivable that a man who has been a thrifty workman may, at the age 2115 of 65, when he gets his pension, want to go, say, to Paris, and there is no reason why a widow, if her husband has made contributions towards a pension for her, should not have the right to do the same thing. There might be more ground— though I deny even that—for doing this kind of thing if the person concerned were going to reside out of the country permanently, but even in such circumstances, after the annuity has been purchased by weekly contributions, I deny the Minister and the State the moral right to do this. Suppose that an insurance company, from whom an annuity had been purchased, were to claim, when it fell due, the right to dictate what should be done with it. Immediately the client would say that, so far as he was concerned, he was not going to accept those terms, but this is a compulsory contribution, and a person has no freedom to decide whether he shall or shall not pay it. The Government says that anybody in an insurable trade must make contributions, and I maintain that when the benefit falls due that person has a perfect right to demand that he shall be able to do as he likes with the pension when it has been granted. I deny that there is any right to take it away in any circumstances or on any consideration. If it had been non-contributory, there might have been some justification, but, when an annuity—it is not a pension—has been purchased, I maintain that neither this Government nor anyone else is justified in taking advantage of the contributors as they are seeking to do by this Clause. This Amendment ought to be accepted in justice to the contributors, and neither on the ground of equity or fairness can the Government sustain the position they are taking up.
The right hon. Gentleman was pleased to be facetious on account of the reasons which were advanced by my hon. Friend in support of the Amendment, and facetious as to the attitude of the Liberal party with regard to the Empire. The right hon. Gentleman is the last person in the world who ought to utter a gibe of that kind. Remembering the history of South Africa, and what was done by his Friends and by the Liberal party in that case, and remembering the confession, with regard to the history of South Africa, made by his right hon. colleague the Secretary of 2116 State for Foreign Affairs two or three years ago, he is the last person in the world, even on those benches, who ought to utter a taunt of that kind. This case is just such another where the so-called Imperial party is Imperialistic in talk but anti-imperialistic in action, and where those who are taunted with not being Imperialistic are those who are suggesting what is really, of two courses, the one that will do the Empire the more good. Let me ask the right hon. Gentleman one or two additional questions. Is it true, as suggested by the hon. Member who has just sat down, that a temporary absence from this country on the part of a pensioner will preclude him from receiving a pension, because that is a very important and a very substantial point? Let me put another question. The Clause reads as follows:A sum shall not be paid on account of a pension—(a) to or in respect of any person while that person is absent from Great Britain.Does he or does he not know, and can he tell us, whether Great Britain includes Northern Ireland, because on the face of it it does not seem to include it.
Finally, the argument which has been advanced from these benches, and, indeed, from above the Gangway too, is that it is not in the interests of the Empire that this discrimination should be made when people leave this country and go to one of our Dominions. The right hon. Gentleman, I suppose having nothing better to say in reply to the Amendment, suggested that the whole argument fell to the ground because my hon. Friend had not taken it to its logical conclusion and urged its adoption in the case of those who went to some country abroad. My hon. Friend said specifically that is what he would have liked to move, but he did not expect to get all he wanted and he moved what he thought would most certainly commend itself to hon. Members opposite. If I am not going outside the bounds of Parliamentary language—I do not think so far in the course of the few months I have been a Member of the House I have done that—I want to add something to what my hon. Friends have said. My hon. Friends who moved and seconded the Amendment put as their main argument, in fact almost their only argument, that it was doing a wrong to individuals and to the Empire if you 2117 were going to discriminate against persons who left this country and went to some other part of the British Empire to live. I entirely agree with that point of view, but I want to put another. It seems to me to be wrong if the doings of the British Government in respect to any of its citizens, whether they settle in this country or go to a foreign country, or to another part of the Empire, can fairly be characterised as highway robbery, and it seems to me that these provisions come very near to that. These are not voluntary contributions. They are compelled to contribute, perhaps for a large number of years, on the ground that they are going to get certain benefits, and at the end of the time you deprive them of those benefits after you have taken their money for years, and that is very little removed from theft. Therefore, I add that argument to those which have been advanced.
We, of course, feel very keenly about this on these benches. The right hon. Gentleman will recall that one of the greatest objections to the pre-War Old Age Pensions Act is the Clause, upon which this is modelled, which prevents a visit to the Dominions by the recipient of an old age pension. Many of these old people desire to join their children in the Dominions— it is quite a common instinct—and the children have not enough money to get the old people out there, but the 10s. would make all the difference. These old people at present are prevented from going, and why you should continue a restriction of that kind in a contributory scheme it is quite impossible to understand. They cannot even go to Ireland. Why should they not, if they have spent a life of toil in this country, go and join their children in Ireland? It should not be very difficult to accept an Amendment which would enable them to do that. The hon. Member who spoke last asked whether or not Northern Ireland was included in this Clause, because it is customary to refer nowadays to Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The words "Northern Ireland" do not appear here, so you leave some of these old people in considerable doubt whether they can go there. If they can they will have the satisfaction of knowing that if they are temporarily absent over the 2118 border, from whatever cause, they cannot draw their pension for that particular week. It seems not only anti-Imperial and immoral but perfectly ridiculous to insert a provision of this kind.
I wanted really to ask the right hon. Gentleman a question. I put it on the Committee stage, and the Parliamentary Secretary answered it, as I thought, satisfactorily. Of course, this Sub-section as it now stands would rule out the Services from getting pensions, and their widows, if they were settled abroad. I pointed out to the Parliamentary Secretary that there was nothing uncommon in a sailor, a soldier or an airman settling abroad on his station, and there was nothing uncommon in the widow of such a man settling abroad if she had joined her husband during his service. Such cases might arise, and I desired to know whether they were covered. The Parliamentary Secretary went into the matter and assured me he would make Regulations to cover these persons under a later Clause. I want to know whether that promise holds good and whether he is satisfied that such members of the Services who have contributed to this scheme will not be penalised under this Clause. The Minister accepted an Amendment of mine on the next Clause, which specifically exempted the Services from its terms. I wish he could have inserted a similar Sub-section in this Clause so as to ensure, at any rate, that the Services and their dependants would not be ruled out.
Mr. A. V. ALEXANDER
The Minister's main argument against the Amendment was that it was impracticable. I take it he means they would have difficulty in tracing the after-life of pensioners and dependants. That may be so, but I should like to ask what is the practice now in regard to other pensioners of the State. The fighting Services are able to get their pensions in whatever part of the globe they settle. I want to know what is the practice, and whether any difficulty is experienced in the payment of pensions either to widows or dependants, or to the pensioners themselves, to the possibly large number of civil servants who may settle in other parts of the globe. I have never yet heard it raised in the House or elsewhere that a civil servant who gets a pension is disqualified on any residential basis in 2119 any part of the globe, and not necessarily within the Empire. It may be argued that this kind of social insurance is not on quite the same basis as the pension given to a civil servant. I suggest that that is on the same basis. We are discussing a contributory scheme. I have never heard any civil servants discussing pensions in relation to service and emoluments who have not argued that the pension is taken into account in fixing his emoluments and that, in fact, the pension which the civil servant gets is received because he has contributed to it in regard to salary during his service to the State. There is a very close analogy between the principle of giving a pension to a civil servant and the principle of giving a pension to another member of the community who, in industry or otherwise, has served the State equally as well as the more favoured member of the community who has served in the Civil Service. Will the Minister explain what is the practice in the case of a Civil Service pension and the case of a pension in the fighting service. We are entitled to some better explanation. What difficulties are experienced, and what are the grounds for suggesting that we cannot adopt the same practice in regard to ordinary members of the community
§ Captain ARTHUR EVANS
I did not hear the views expressed by the Minister of Health, but there seems to be some force in the arguments advanced in support of the Amendment. This is a contributory scheme, and we are telling the people of this country that they are entitled to these pensions as a right. We cannot continue to do that if we say, "You must not do this or that. You must live as we want you to do, and not as you yourself want to live." There is some difficulty in regard to a person who is resident overseas and not in a British Dominion; but there is no reason that can be advanced why a pension should not be paid to a person who is resident within the British Empire. It would be practical to suggest that the payment of the pension should be made quarterly to those persons who are not resident in Great Britain. There could be no objection taken to that course by the person who has paid contributions and become entitled to a pension. I know of Army officers who are resident in 2120 Egypt, Canada, and South Africa, who have their pensions sent out to them. There is no reason why the people, who are affected by this Bill, who have paid their contributions, and have become entitled to the pension as a right, should not receive the pension when they go to the Dominions.
I have endeavoured to give serious answers to serious arguments, but I must admit that the tone of the first two speakers on this Amendment did not strike me as entirely serious, and I did not feel called upon to repeat at length the arguments which were put forward on the Committee stage, but as the matter has been taken up in other quarters more seriously—
On a point of Order. The right hon. Gentleman is generally so courteous, that I must ask him to withdraw what he has just said. Every word that I said was meant to be serious. There was nothing flippant in it. When the right hon. Gentleman suggests that one was not serious, it is an unfounded insinuation.
When the hon. Member undertook to inform us what was the truly Imperial spirit, I must admit that I could not take that seriously. [HON. MEMBERS: "Why not?"]
§ Mr. HARRIS
I happen to be a son of the Empire, and I know as much about the Empire as the right hon. Gentleman. My mother was born out there, and my father was a settler out there, and I have lived many years in the Dominions The right hon. Gentleman has no right to make an insinuation of that kind.
Does the right hon. Gentleman think that his remark in regard to the hon. Member for West Middlesbrough (Mr. T. Thomson), who served throughout the War, is entirely courteous?
Does the right hon. Gentleman consider that he is the only Member of the House who has the interests of the Empire at heart? Whenever the Empire is mentioned, it seems to be like a red rag to a bull to the right hon. Gentleman and incites him to all sorts of indiscretions, which only delay the consideration of the Bill.
If hon. Members below the Gangway are so anxious to be known as the Imperial party, I hope the right hon. Gentleman will not take that credit away from them.
I will proceed with what I was about to say. I have been asked what is the actual effect of the Clause. I have been asked whether the result of the Clause will be that if a man or a woman who is entitled to a pension go abroad for a short period, they will be deprived of their pension. That is not the effect of the Clause. The pension cannot be paid to them while they are abroad, but if they come back again within three months, they can then draw the whole of the arrears which have accumulated during their absence.
That question is raised on another Amendment, and therefore I have not discussed it. The effect of the Clause is that temporary absence does not deprive them of anything, except that they do not get the pension until they come back. The term "Great Britain" does not include Northern Ireland. [An HON. MEMBER:" Or the Channel Islands?"] Those questions were answered in Committee, when we had an extensive lesson in geography from an hon. Member opposite.
§ Mr. SPENCER
Does the right hon. Gentleman suggest that paragraph (b) is related to paragraph (a)? They can be read together, so that if a person goes abroad to live he will not fee entitled to a pension, and if he remains abroad Longer than three months he will not be able to draw anything at all.
The first part of paragraph (a) says that no pension can be paid to a person or in respect of a person while that person is abroad. The second paragraph says that if they do not draw the money within three months after the date on which it becomes payable, they cannot get it. Therefore, if a person goes abroad, and comes back within three months, that person can get the whole of the pension which has accumulated during the three months, but if that person goes abroad and remains abroad six months, he or she can only, when he or she comes back, get three months' pension.
2122 The hon. Member for Hillsborough (Mr. A. V. Alexander) asked me why we make a distinction between the contributors under this Bill and civil servants who are entitled to pensions, and men who have been engaged in the forces. Surely, he will see that on the practical side of administration there is a big difference between the two cases. In regard to the rights of the people concerned, they are laid down in the Bill, and it is not for other people to say what their rights are, other than those which are actually laid down in the Bill. Those rights are, for practical reasons, subject to certain restrictions, inherent in the scheme, and there is no question of any highway robbery.
May I point out to the hon. Member that in the cases of which he speaks the pensions are fixed in amount. They are not subject to conditions, and are not subject to change. Therefore all that has to be done is to find someone to whom the pension has to be paid. That is a different thing from the pension payable under this Bill. We have been discussing various conditions in which the pension ceases or changes. Take the case of the widow who has children under 14 years of age, and is entitled to a pension. How can we in this country keep track of what is happening to those children in some distant part of the Empire; it may be hundreds of miles from the nearest railway, and completely out of touch with this country altogether? It is impossible for us to ensure the carrying out of the conditions laid down in this Bill with regard to those people who are so far away from us.
Again, take the case of the widow whose pension ceases when she remarries. How are we to find out whether she remarries or not in a distant Dominion? It is on those points that it becomes impracticable to carry this scheme beyond the shores of this island, and it is therefore only open to us to say that where a Dominion brings in a scheme which is similar in its terms to this we shall be only too glad to make reciprocal arrangements, under which people who have contributed in that country will be able to get paid in this, and people who have contributed in this country will be able to get the benefits to which they will be entitled in that country through the Government of that country.
The right hon. Gentleman is confusing in his explanation what will be the law and what is really a moral right. There may be something in what he says about the difficulty in tracing, after they have left this country, the recipient of pensions whose continued receipt of a pension would depend on various circumstances. Surely, if he has a moral right because of his contributions, then, if he goes away from a place where he can get the pension in practicable circumstances, there ought to be some surrender value or something of that nature allowed.
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER (Captain FitzRoy)
I must remind the House that we are no longer in the Committee stage, and that hon. Members cannot speak more than once.
I wished to put a very important point, which I would like the right hon. Gentleman to answer, as to the promise of regulations which was made by his hon. Friend.
I am sure that my hon. Friend did not promise any regulations. I have looked into what my hon. Friend said, as reported in the OFFICIAL REPORT, and I have been unable to read any such promise. He said that he would look into the matter.
§ Mr. BROAD
The right hon. Gentleman has shown that there is some objection with regard to the handling of this matter, so far as widows and orphans are concerned. No doubt, there is a great deal in that, but he has not dealt with the position from the point of view of the old age pensioner whose pension is not conditioned on anything except the fact of being alive, and it is in those cases that hardship arises. We may not expect many widows to emigrate with their children, but we do know that a great many of our young men and women are being encouraged to go to our Colonies and settle there. As they go on, they desire their old folk to come and spend their declining years with them. There is no more difficulty in paying their pensions quarterly than in paying the ex-service man who has gone abroad. It is only a question of a certificate of 2124 identification, and I hope that the Minister will give way on this point.
I have been given one illustration of this in connection with pre-War pensioners. An ex-police sergeant with a pre-War pension has a son in Canada. That son invited the old man and his wife to go out there and see him. While there the mother had an accident and she was unable to come home, but the man had to come home again to get his pension, and so for three years those old folk have been separated. The old lady is over in Canada and the old gentleman is over here. That is the sort of thing we want to provide for. I hope the right hon. Gentleman will give way so far as the old age pensioners are concerned. In such cases there are none of the difficulties which he raises. This is a very serious Amendment, and if it comes to a question of treating the matter with hilarity I am sure that the Under-Secretary could very well be called to account by his principal as to the hilarity with which he is treating this matter, because he has been laughing all the time. If the Minister himself will deal with this matter, and not make these reflections from side to side, which take up so much time, we shall get down to the issue involved and get on with our business.
§ Mr. LAWSON
I think that the House will agree that there is a good deal in the argument that it would be very difficult in the case of a widow going abroad to ascertain whether she has been married or not and so on. But that difficulty does not apply to other cases. I happen to know that in the payment of pensions of ex-officers the matter has been arranged and there is no difficulty. Apart from that I do think the right hon. Gentleman must come to the conclusion that if he cannot make arrangements for paying these pensions in other countries, not alone in the Dominions but outside them, then he ought to make a serious attempt to meet the suggestion which has been put forward that he should give a surrender value or that he should commute the pension. The Minister of Pensions will tell him that when men go overseas they make arrangements and so very often a man has something to start with on the other side.
Then there is the question raised by my hon. Friend, that more and more you have families emigrating from this country 2125 particularly to the Dominions. There are those who say that there are too many people to find employment here, and those in responsible positions are always saying that the greater part of the million who are unemployed are not likely to get employment in this country. It is a serious state of affairs. Emigration is being considered more and more. I would suggest to the right hon. Gentleman, in view of the arguments which have been put forward, that he should at least in another place endeavour to make the arrangements necessary to give effect to some system of commutation of these pensions, if he cannot make arrangements for their payment abroad.
I quite realise the difficulty of the Minister in regard to the general concession to the general public when they go abroad, but I would ask him to consider whether it is still not too late to do something with regard to the ex-service people and the civil servants, because I do think that they are in a very different position from those who are engaged in industry. As a rule they go abroad temporarily, but it is possible that, when they have been abroad for a number of years, they may bring out their wives and families. In many cases, assisted passages are given by the Services or the Civil Service. If such a person dies on service abroad, is it possible in cases where the wife and family remain abroad to pay some commutation allowance. I do not see that there is any great administrative difficulty because possibly there would he some pension from the Department concerned, but such a provision as is suggested would remove a certain criticism which might now be applied to the scheme in regard to persons who are employed by the State. Persons who emigrate to the Dominions and who are really starting a new life, take into consideration all the various facts, but those in the Services or the Civil Service who go abroad under the conditions I have described, do not emigrate to start a new life, but go abroad in the service of their country with the intention of returning.
§ Mr. GRIFFITHS
Is the hon. and gallant Member in order in discussing the position of civil servants and members of the other Services on this Amendment?
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER (Captain FitzRoy)
I have not observed the hon. and gallant Member to be out of order.
I do not profess to be acquainted with all the intricate details of this Bill, but I am speaking more especially with regard to those Service people who contribute to these pensions. Candidly I am not quite clear as to whether civil servants come in, but if they do, in so far as they do come in, they ought to be treated as persons in the other Services are treated. I ask the Minister to consider the special circumstances of those who are employed by the State under the conditions I have indicated, and to see if he could not arrange to have a commutation arranged such as has been suggested. In the conditions I have mentioned it would be merely adding to what these persons are already getting from their Department.
Periodically we hear of groups of children being taken through the Dr. Barnardo's homes to the Dominions. I take it that in the future pensions will be payable in respect of many of these children who are orphans. If such children are emigrated in batches to Canada and other Dominions, it does not appear that the Bill as it stands contains any provision in regard to them. It is a rather serious point, and I ask the Minister if he has given any attention to it?
§ Mr. SAMUEL ROBERTS
If a pensioner were to take a. Cook's tour for a week on the Continent and during that week were to fall ill, and if he were to be detained for some time in a hospital on the Continent, would the Ministry deprive such a person of a pension? I raise this question because a young girl who took a Cook's tour for a week to Paris and who was laid up with rheumatic fever for three months has been refused sick benefit.
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER (Captain FitzRoy)
The hon. and gallant Member has already spoken, and as this is the Report stage of the Bill he has exhausted his right.
My previous intervention was not to make a speech, 2127 but merely to ask a question, and I sat down immediately I had asked the question. I submit that does not exhaust my right.
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER
I would again ask hon. Members to bear in mind that we are not now considering the Bill in Committee.
§ 9.0 P.M.
§ Sir K. WOOD
In rising to reply to the questions which have been put, may I first assure the hon. Member who alluded to what he termed my levity, that I was not in any way commenting on any part of the proceedings in this House on the occasion to which he refers. I was endeavouring to fortify myself for the evening by reference to some other matters entirely unconnected with this Bill. As regards the children who are taken out of the country under the auspices of Dr. Barnardo's Homes, naturally they will be provided for by the institution which takes them, and I do not think any case of hardship arises there.
Supposing they had remained in this country would there not have been pensions in respect of them?
§ Sir K. WOOD
I can conceive a case where an order of the Court has been made transferring the custody of the children to Dr. Barnardo's Home and that case I think would be met. But if it were decided to take the children away then no doubt adequate arrangements would be made by those in charge of the home to maintain them abroad. I think, so far as the children are concerned, there can be no hardship.
§ Sir K. WOOD
So far as the young lady who went to Paris is concerned what happens to her is that if she comes back she can claim the three months arrears and no more, and I do not think that is an unreasonable condition. I suggest that hon. Members have not appreciated the difficulties of administration as regard recipients who are abroad. One hon. Member suggested that not only people in the British Dominions but even persons in foreign countries should be paid. I am not now raising any question of international policy or Imperial policy, but I 2128 suggest to the hon. Member that he would have great difficulty if he had to administer this scheme for one group of people in Belgium, another group in France, a third group in the Dominions, and so on.
§ Mr. SPENCER
Why could not the person in a foreign country satisfy the British Consul that he was the person entitled to the money?
§ Sir K. WOOD
He might satisfy the British Consul, but take the case of a person in receipt of a pension who went to some remote part of Canada. To what officer could you possibly delegate the duty of saying that the conditions of this Bill were complied with?
§ Sir K. WOOD
The conditions which apply so far as old age pensions are concerned are exactly the same conditions as those contained here.
§ Sir K. WOOD
I must answer one question at a time. So far as I am concerned, I do not see at present how it is possible to devise a system by which we could see that the obligations and conditions of the scheme were carried out in all the different parts of the world. It is impossible. Another question was put to me about commutation and surrender value. If you are to have commutation and surrender value, you must have them at the expense of the fund— the other contributors to the scheme have to pay for that. We must have regard to the interests of the whole fund, and if people do go abroad and make up their minds to do so, knowing that this is a condition of the scheme, they must abide by their own decision. I am looking forward to a time when, particularly in our own Dominions, similar schemes will be possible, and we are taking power to make reciprocal arrangements with any Dominion which institutes a scheme such as this, so if there is a scheme let us say in Canada, giving the same or better benefits we shall be able under this Measure to transfer—
§ Sir K. WOOD
I say that we have made a provision by which we can make the necessary transfer as between our own scheme and schemes working in conjunction with our own. I think that is the true solution of a difficulty of this kind. I appreciate the points which have been put, but I venture to say that, after hearing a long discussion, I hope the great majority will agree that the administrative difficulties are too great, and that we must look forward to solving this matter at a time when other countries and Dominions make similar schemes in order that we may make reciprocal arrangements.
Can the hon. Member point to a single difficulty that would be experienced in satisfying himself that an old age pensioner, who emigrated, was still alive and, therefore, entitled to receive his pension?
With regard to the argument of the Parliamentary Secretary. I am reminded of a discussion in this House two years ago in connection with a scheme which had been formulated and really engineered by the party opposite. That was a scheme for the emigration from this country of young persons under 17 years of age. We protested against that, and every Member opposite guaranteed to this House that there would be a follow-up scheme and that, although these young persons under 17 were emigrated to Australia and were 400 miles from a railway station or from any small township, they would be able to trace these children, keep an eye on them, and see that they were guaranteed fair treatment. Why have they changed when it comes to a question of paying pensions to children who may emigrate? The Parliamentary Secretary has not replied to the point raised by my hon. Friend in connection with the emigration of children from Dr. Barnardo's Homes. It is true that these children have been provided for in the past, but they have been provided for by the generosity of people—
When these children are emigrated abroad, it is stated that they are to be deprived of the pensions for which their parents have paid, and I 2130 was trying to prove that it is not impossible to follow up these children or to pay the pensions to those children who are entitled to receive them. I may point out that the objection to this proposal is going to out away some of these schemes in connection with emigration. The Salvation Army emigrate whole families. They have schemes whereby they have arranged at the present time for the emigration of widows with families, and there are many families in which there are four children over 14 years of age, who are able to go and take their place in the Colonies, with a mother to care for them going along with them, but there are children under 14 years of age. If a family has emigrated by the assistance of the Salvation Army, they are going to lose the pension for the children, and the widow will lose the pension also. I do not think we can be taunted—at least, I am not going to accept a taunt that I am not as good a believer in Empire as any Member opposite. From the moment I entered this House, I have been a member of the Labour group that is interested in Empire development, and I am going to make the claim that you are going to stand in the way of helping those who would get work for children emigrating abroad if you do not accept the Amendment. I trust that some action may be taken by the Government, if they will not accept the Amendment, to get some alteration which will give some benefit to those who emigrate abroad, and—I will be frank—that they will not steal from them the benefits for which their parents paid when they happened to be alive.
Dr. VERNON DAVIES
So far as I understand it, the Ministry have no desire to get out of their obligations to pay this money. It is simply a question of difficulty of administration. The people in this country have to prove to the satisfaction of the Ministry that they are entitled to this fund. Would it not be possible to ask the people who go abroad to still provide that proof, and to throw the onus upon them? If they could prove to the Ministry their entitlement, I think they ought to get the money. It is not that the Government wishes to deny it, but by throwing the onus of proof on the people themselves, it would relieve the Ministry of all trouble and give the people, I should think, a very great deal of trouble.
I entirely agree with the last speaker. It seems to me that if anyone has contributed to a scheme, and takes the trouble to keep in touch with the authorities, that person is entitled to a pension under this Bill. Assuming that he cannot keep in touch, I admit there is that difficulty; but seeing that this is a contributory scheme, I do not understand why the Government could not agree to earmark the pension until such time as the person entitled to it is able to come forward and prove his or her claim. It seems to me, if I may say so with great respect to the Government, that it is a monstrous suggestion to make that anyone who has paid into the scheme should not be entitled to receive the benefits under the scheme, merely on the ground that he or she has left the kingdom. It seems to me wholly inequitable and wrong, and I must say, reading this Clause, that I am not at all in agreement with it. It may be that the side-note, "Residential qualification," makes the position clearer, but if you do not rely on that side-note, I am by no means certain that the Clause as drawn bears the interpretation placed upon it by the right hon. Gentleman, who, I am sorry to see, is not in his place at the moment to hear what I have to say on this subject. This is a contributory scheme, and it is, to my mind, monstrously unfair to suggest that anybody who leaves the kingdom, and who is ready and willing to keep in touch with the authorities, should be prevented from drawing his or her pension. As far as I am concerned, I am not in agreement with the right hon. Gentleman on this Clause.
The Under-Secretary mentioned in his reply that the only method and the only hope of getting some payment for these people, who, for one reason or another, may be compelled to emigrate to the Colonies—and I do not know whether he included foreign countries also—was that the Colonies should have some equivalent scheme in operation. I made an interjection, and asked if that would apply to the Colonies who either now have or in the future may originate a non-contributory scheme.
Would it apply to such a country as the United States, where, I believe, mothers' pensions of some description are already initiated? Would 2132 it not be possible to have a scheme of agreements between a country like that and ourselves, even though their scheme is non-contributory? I think it might be worked out on that basis, and if there is anything behind what the Undersecretary says, in view of the fact that the United States in any event have a mothers' pension scheme, this benefit might be arranged with them to be paid to our people who emigrate there, and to any other countries which have a similar scheme, whether contributory or non-contributory. The Under-Secretary made a, lot of fuss about the question of administrative difficulties. Would it not be possible to put the onus on anybody who goes out to our Colonies, or even to foreign countries, of proving that they are obeying and abiding by the conditions laid down in this Bill? If they do not provide the proof, it may be possible that the Government may have some reasonable grounds for refusing to pay the pension. But surely if they can provide proof they ought to have the pension. There will be those to whom they can testify, such as magistrates or other officials in the Colonies, men that can be trusted, and in constant touch with various authorities. The thing can be done from that point of view; but that the Parliamentary Secretary should think of administrative difficulties standing in the way is not quite good enough. These people have paid for their pensions and they ought to have them.
The basis of the arguments of hon. Members opposite has been that by virtue of the fact that this is a contributory scheme these people have a right to their pension. There is no question of charity, no question of destroying their morale by giving them a gift from the State. The thing is one they have paid for, say they, and they have a right to it. But the moment the question of difficulty comes up in another country and that the people concerned shall have their rights, the difficulties are so great that it cannot be done! After all, hon. Members, including hon. Members on the Front Bench opposite, say that our Civil Service and our different Departments of State are wonderfully effective, and the idea is that they can get over any number of difficulties— almost insuperable difficulties. Surely if that is so, the difficulties presented by 2133 this Clause are not so insuperable but what they can be surmounted very easily if the will to surmount them is behind it all. I think the will is not behind the Government. I was going to say that the "excuse" that has been made—perhaps that is not quite the right word: let me say the "reason" given by the Parliamentary Secretary for not accepting the Amendment to this Clause is too thin for any intelligent Member of this House to accept. There is no will behind it. Probably they think that if these people do not get their pensions it will enable the Bill to be on a better financial footing than otherwise would be the case, and at the expense of the poor unfortunate people who have paid for the pension, and are denied it. I think the Parliamentary Secretary will find it is not well to let drop the wishes of the House— not of one party—because since this Clause has been discussed nearly everybody who has taken part in it has expressed the same feeling as on the Liberal and Labour Benches. In view of that fact, I think they would be wise, even at this late hour, to promise to do something to meet the arguments that have been put forward.
Sir ALFRED BUTT
I am extremely sorry that earlier in this Debate hon. Members above the Gangway accused the Minister and the Parliamentary Secretary of treating this matter in a way it should not be treated. I think it will be agreed that hitherto we have had nothing but great consideration and patience from the Minister and the Parliamentary Secretary. That, however, is a reason why I hope the Parliamentary Secretary, who is now on the Front Bench, will himself appreciate that there is in the speaking on all sides of the House the feeling that what is admittedly unjust and immoral cannot be justified merely because of administrative difficulties. Those who have spoken have emphasised the fact that administrative difficulties can be overcome if the onus of proof is put upon the claimant to prove the justice of his claim. That might apply with great force to those who reside in the Colonies. I am one of those—and I do not think I stand alone in this House—who think that part of our difficulties in regard to unemployment can be overcome by encouraging emigration. I think it is deplorable that we 2134 should be discussing a Bill where we seem to be putting up difficulties in regard to the emigrants from this country. I should like to remind the Parliamentary Secretary that the Minister has admitted the principle that a claimant may be away for three months and still come back and draw his pension in full. I suggest that, having regard to the discussions which have taken place in this House, there should certainly be a method, so far as the Dominions are concerned, that while putting the onus of proof upon the claimant, facilities should be given by this Bill and by the Government to enable any claimant to get what is due to him.
The House has many times heard speeches on the other side of the House about the great necessity of linking up and cementing the Empire. I have been sitting here wondering why all that view has been lost sight of in the discussion now before the House. If there is any way of loosening the cement that joins the Empire it is by making those who go to other parts feel a hatred towards this country for robbing them. It is not a question of their doing what they like in the matter. It is a question of being compelled to pay, and then: "if you dare to emigrate"—which they are always being asked to do—your country forgets that you have paid. That is the shoddy finance upon which this Bill is based: the robbery of the orphan of his 7s. 6d. a week and of anybody else in order to keep up the shoddy finance of this Bill. Now I want to speak in regard to what was said previously. Speaking in the Debate on Tuesday, 14th July, the Parliamentary Secretary asked himself a question Which I am now putting to him. He said:I am impressed with two matters which I shall mention, and I think we shall have to see what can be done. I am impressed with the case, say, of a soldier maintaining his wife abroad as in some cases happens, and we will say he dies. What is the position of his widow?"—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 14th July, 1925; col. 1201, Vol. 186.]Further on the hon. Gentleman said:There is a Clause 34, which does give power to the Minister to remove difficulties in such cases as I hope this may be."— [OFFICIAL REPORT, 14th July, 1925: col. 1201, Vol. 186.]This we are now discussing as being insuperable! The hon. Gentleman 2135 said then that this Clause 34 gave power to remove these difficulties. If that Clause does give power, why is it being stated now that the difficulties are insuperable? The logic of the whole position comes to this: These Clauses in the Bill have been badly drafted, or those drafting them have been compelled, for financial reasons, to change their mind. However honestly they may have started out to do the work, they have got this alternative of robbing these people. That seems to be the logic, so far as the change is concerned. It may be that the Parliamentary Secretary has got some way out of this. I should like to see him perform on the subject, in order to get this matter squared up, as between the two parties I have mentioned.
Where is the justification for any hon. or right hon. Gentleman one day talking about the greatness of Empire, and yet, when it comes to a few shillings, to say, in effect, to the people abroad, that however they may feel towards us, we do not care for them, and do not mind doing something to keep up this shoddy finance of the Bill. We have had before the House the question of the emigration of children. What was the position of hon. and right hon. Gentleman opposite? I will not waste the time of the House reiterating or reminding them. I think they have sufficient memory to remind themselves of the fact. Let them try to explain their attitude away, how they are now standing and looking the other way! If you want to get sound finance, if you want to be able to go to the country, and say that you at least expressed your moral sense of responsibility to the wife of the service man who dies, the orphan who is going abroad; if you want to say you used your moral sense at all, then you are bound to change those things. What an awful and inglorious position it is for men claiming to be such highly-skilled business men to say that we cannot make a little arrangement; that when somone goes abroad, we cannot keep in touch. Why? Cook's tours would give you a piece to attach to your passport that would carry you to the end of your life. You are making us in opposition feel ashamed of you for the absolute lack of business capacity, and I hope the Parliamentary Secretary will 2136 take the twist out of his statements. I would like to see him walking the straight line.
§ Lieut.-Commander ASTBURY
I feel it very difficult to accept this Clause, and it makes it no easier for us on this side of the House to listen to the language of those speaking in favour of the Amendment, and to hear such words as "robbery."
§ Lieut.-Commander ASTBURY
My objection to this Clause is the same objection I have raised on two other Clauses, and it is that this is not a. non-contributory Bill. It is a contributory Bill, and those who have paid money have a perfect right to receive that money when they become entitled to it. If any of us are insured in commercial companies, because we went abroad, or anything happened, that company would not be able to come to us and say, "Because you have gone abroad, we cannot trace you, and we refuse to pay."
§ Lieut.-Commander ASTBURY
The Parliamentary Secretary tells me it depends on the conditions of the policy-Let me say that I should not be so foolish as to accept a policy that contained such restrictions.
§ Sir K. WOOD
Most of the conditions of the policies of companies in this country are that people may not go abroad.
§ Lieut.-Commander ASTBURY
I might reply to my hon. Friend. [An HON. MEMBER: "What did he say?"] I know what he said, and if hon. Members opposite will allow me, I will reply. If you insure yourself for life, it is for the British Isles. If you want to go, say, to the East, you pay a higher premium. I do not think that is pari passu with the case here. I quite admit that the administration of tracing all these people and paying pensions to them would be 2137 not only extremely difficult but, I must confess, I do not see how it is possible. What I do think is that there would be no difficulty in providing that when anyone went abroad their pensions should be commuted. Ex-service men get their pensions commuted if they are going abroad and want to use the money to set up in business abroad, and I do not see any reason why pensioners in this country should not have their pensions commuted. I may add that it is quite impossible to give a widow a pension of 20s. up to the age of 70, and then to withdraw from her 10s. per week. The logical and inevitable result of increasing the widows' pensions would be that we would also have to increase the old age pensions. Therefore, you would add to the millions I have mentioned, double the whole cost of existing pensions. I trust the Minister will do something between now and when the Bill reaches another place, or when it is in another place, to delete this provision, or vary it in some way, so that a man or woman who has paid contributions to this scheme gets money value.
I am sure the House has had the greatest sympathy with the Minister when actuarial difficulties have prevented the adoption of Amendments to this Bill. Where actuarial difficulties exist, even the best Amendments must sometimes give way. But it is a totally different business when the difficulty is only administrative. I feel the House has very little sympathy with the argument put forward by the Parliamentary Secretary. Administrative difficulties exist only to be got over, and I think this Clause as it stands represents the Departmental mind and not the Cabinet mind. I would like to see the Parliamentary Secretary apply his well-known resourcefulness and mental agility to getting rid of the provision that when a man or woman has passed the contributory stage and leaves Great Britain to go to the Dominions he or she will not lose the benefits under this Bill. The hon. Member for Springburn (Mr. Hardie) touched upon the contrast that this Clause makes with the arguments in favour of migration. I entirely agree with him. I think it is absurd that we should urge the country to treat the Dominions and the Mother Country as one, and then, when we are confronted by a simple 2138 administrative difficulty of finding out whether Mrs. "X" is still a widow or Mr. "Y" is still alive that we should be told that the administrative difficulty is so great that the pension cannot be paid. It is a complete contrast with all those views about the Empire which are expressed, and properly and sincerely expressed, by our party, and I urge the Parliamentary Secretary, even at this time, to reconsider this Clause.
I cannot believe the administrative difficulties are very great. For example, a war pensioner going to India continues to get his pension. I understand, because I was dealing recently with a case of this kind, that it is up to him to communicate with the pension authorities at home, and that if he fails to do so over a certain period his pension drops. Surely some provision analogous to that, though perhaps slightly less rigid, could be adopted When a man or woman goes to the British Dominions, where the central and local administrations are very much the same as our own, it is absurd to say that the administrative difficulties are so great that pensions for which contributions have been paid must come to an end. I agree that if it were a case of continuing the contributions the question would be very different, and I would not press my hon. Friend on that point; but here, ex hypothesi, the contributory period is over and all that remains is for them to receive the fruit of their contributions. It seems to be so foolish, so shortsighted, so typical of the Departmental mind to say that the pension cannot be received because there may be some little trouble over the identification of those who have gone to those parts of the world where so many of our fellow countrymen have settled.
I wonder why we do not oftener hear speeches like those to which we have been listening from the Government side. I am somewhat surprised at the line taken by the Parliamentary Secretary, as the Government have already got over the difficulty in the case of men who are receiving pensions from the various Departments. I know hon. Members of this House who have been in receipt of pensions from the Government, and I have read of their being out of the country for a considerable period for reasons of health, but I have never 2139 heard that their pensions were stopped during the time they were away. If pensions can be paid in the case of Civil Service pensioners, or of Army or Navy pensioners, why cannot we get over the administrative difficulties in the case of these people who have been paying week by week for their pensions? I recall the case of men who are sent to Malta. The Admiralty requires a number of its men, middle-aged men, to go out to Malta for periods of two or three years, and they go also to Gibraltar and to Hong Kong. If it happens that only one of their parents is alive, they like to take that parent with them, because the family may never have been separated. Under this Bill, if those people in the Admiralty service care to take out their old parents the pension they are in receipt of will be stopped. Reference has been made by the hon. Member for Springburn (Mr. Hardie) to Cook's tourists. Hon. Members on the other side sometimes remind us of the trade unions. Trade unions have branches in various parts of the world. I deal with branches in Gibraltar, Malta, Simon's Town, Hong Kong and Bermuda. If the trade unions can get over the difficulty of distributing their benefits there, surely the Ministry of Health is not going to put itself in a secondary position to the trade unions? I trust, after the appeal that has been made to the Parliamentary Secretary by his own party, and after he has heard how the pensioners from other Departments can be paid, no matter what part of the world they are in, that he will grant this concession to people who are recipients of pensions under this Bill.
§ Major GLYN
I do hope the Parliamentary Secretary will consider the representations that have been made to him. It seems to me to be a comparatively simple matter. As a great many Members have said, under a contributory scheme there are rights attaching to the benefits, and I think none of us can deny it. There may be overwhelming difficulties in supervising the administration of the scheme overseas, but I do not see any difficulty in a man of 60 or 55 who has gone overseas to settle with the younger members of his family being allowed to commute his pension. That would be some concession, at any rate.
§ Sir K. WOOD
The other contributors to the scheme have to be. considered. Any surrender value or any commutation has to come out of the funds of the scheme.
§ Major GLYN
I quite agree, but, after all, the individual member has subscribed, and he is making a sacrifice. It may not be actuarially sound, or anything else, but if we are going to make this scheme a real thing, and prevent its retarding migration, this small concession as to commuting a pension at the time of departure overseas ought to be considered most carefully.
§ Mr. CLYNES
I rise to ask the Parliamentary Secretary whether, after having listened to the Debate during the last hour or so, he does not recognise that the House is quite unanimous in its appeal to him to modify his attitude on the Amendment? Every speaker, from whatever part of the House he has risen, has spoken in support of this Amendment or the alternative of commutation. It clearly has suggested itself to the House as a reasonable and equitable provision to have in a Bill of this kind. It may be that the Parliamentary Secretary feels some difficulty in receding from the position taken up by the right hon. Gentleman in charge of the Bill, and by himself, in the earlier stages of the Debate, but he must now feel that he would be doing a real injustice to those who are entitled to the rights and to the benefits under this Bill if he deprived them of those benefits merely because they went to reside in some other part of the Empire. I suggest that it would be advisable to have the Debate carried on for just a short time longer in order that the right hon. Gentleman in charge of the Bill could be informed of the unanimous feeling of the House, and in the hope that a somewhat more reassuring statement will be made to us.
I would like to ask the Parliamentary Secretary how many people are likely to be affected by this proviso, and, further, whether the Dominion Governments could not be consulted to see if administrative difficulties could not be overcome? I feel very strongly on the subject of Empire migration, and I think that the party of the Parliamentary Secretary would do everything in their power to encourage every right-minded 2141 type of person to migrate, even at the cost of any small loss which might accrue from this concession. I think we should have some information showing whether these difficulties could not be overcome.
I would press the Parliamentary Secretary to give this matter due consideration. Great injustice is going to be done if this Clause is allowed to remain, and I feel prompted to ask what saving is likely to be effected by retaining it. I feel that this provision is an oversight, that due consideration was not given to the effect of it upon the increasing number of old folk who are going to the Dominions year after year. The easy means of travel and the short time occupied in getting to the Dominions are an additional inducement to them to go with their sons and daughters who may have settled there. The House ought to give due consideration to that fact, and the Ministry of Health ought to be prepared to accept what I feel to be the undoubted desire of the House.
The question which is exercising the minds of hon. Members of this House is one which has given them very deep thought during the progress of this Bill. I agree with the Parliamentary Secretary that there are administrative difficulties in paying these pensions week by week or month by month, and I see the possibility of people wandering about for a considerable period and coming back when they have got six months or 12 months in arrears. On the other hand, it must be remembered that there are periodical payments due to people travelling in distant parts of the world, and those difficulties are got over sometimes by private institutions. I think the Minister could get over the difficulties, not by having to pay these pensions week by week or every quarter, but he might adopt the suggestion that there should be commutation of the pensions which have become due. The Parliamentary Secretary has suggested that the surrender value would have to be paid by the other contributors to the scheme, but is that so? Surely the actuary has reserved a lump sum to provide for the time when these pensions become due. A lump sum is required to purchase annuities for people at the age of 50, 60 or 65 for a number of years, and other sums are required for children. When these things have been valued under this scheme, at the end of 2142 five or ten years the Government must ask whether they have sufficient in hand, and whether they will have, sufficient to purchase these annuities as they fall due.
Under the war pensions scheme commutation has not been found difficult to carry out, and it meets very much the same class of difficulties which arise in this case. Members of pensions committees know that we constantly receive application from men who desire to settle in Canada or Australia, and they require a sum of money to pay their passages and to leave their families on a satisfactory footing until they start work abroad. Even that difficulty has been got over, and I suggest to the Minister that the administrative difficulties of paying these pensions at different periods can be got over by commutation for a cash surrender value. It is evident that the actuary has provided the finance of this Bill on the basis that all persons in this country who qualify are going to receive their pension, and it will be in the nature of a windfall if a number of persons are persuaded to leave this country and settle in our Dominions. Let us hope that the condition of trade here will be so good that we shall not need our people to emigrate, and for these reasons I ask the Minister to reconsider this question.
Mr. RHYS DAVIES
I desire to appeal to the Minister to reconsider his position in regard to this Amendment. During his absence from 15 to 20 speakers, on all sides of the House, have been appealing in the same way, asking that this Amendment should be adopted. I will put one or two considerations before the Minister. I feel sure the argument he will use on this occasion will be exactly the one he used when this Bill was before the House in Committee when we discussed this Clause, and it was that, because this scheme was associated with the National Health Insurance, it would be impossible to administer this Amendment. I want to put one point, which I hope the Minister of Health will note. This Bill differs in the provision of pensions from the benefits that are provided under the National Health Insurance Act; and I cannot see that the comparison carries any weight, because whether a man receives benefit or not, he is insured. He may receive medical benefit when he dons not receive 2143 cash benefits. The people under this Bill have no chance, of insurance of that kind, most of them will have to wait until they reach the age of 66, and they will have contributed to a fund which ought to help them when they reach that age.
Take the case of the person who pays into the fund from the age of 16 to 65, and he desires to emigrate to one of the Dominions. I do not know of any argument against that person being able to have a commutation of the amount due to him. I do not think it would be very expensive. I would like to ask if anyone can say how many persons would fall into the category of which I have been speaking. In view of the unanimity which has been shown on this point I urge the right hon. Gentleman to do something in this direction, and accept this Amendment. I would like to remind him that we have now dropped the contention that the pension should be paid to persons wherever they go in any part of the world. The Amendment is now confined to the British Empire. When we appeal to a Conservative Government on that ground I think they ought to take serious notice of our arguments.
§ Major Sir BERTRAM FALLE
If this is a question of commutation it is a much larger one than this particular Act, because it would affect immediately the two great Services. In the Army no man is allowed to commute at less than 2s. or 3s per day. The Navy is almost in the same position, and no naval man can commute at less than 14s. If the Navy and the Army men, whose pensions are thoroughly well earned, are not allowed to do this why should the old age pensioner be allowed to commute his pension which is 10s. This is a question which opens a very wide door. It is not simply commuting the old age pension, but if you commute a 10s. pension you would have to allow both Services to commute at 10s. as well. It has been found that it is a very great mistake to allow the service men to commute pensions below 2s. per day.
-In the absence of the Minister of Health, this House seems to have come to a unanimous decision on this point on every side, because the same 2144 view has been expressed by hon. Members above the Gangway, on the Liberal benches, and amongst the friends and followers of the Government. No less than 10 Conservative Members have spoken in favour of the Amendment and against the exclusion of these pensioners who have gone abroad from the benefits of this scheme. The main ground on which the claim has been based is that this is not a. non-contributory scheme in regard to which we could have laid down regulations of this kind, but it is a contributory scheme, and to withhold what is due to these pensions because they have gone to a different part of the British Empire is quite wrong. That is a feeling which is not restricted to one quarter of the House. I am sure that the right hon. Gentleman, if he had been here would have seen that Members were conducting this discussion, not with the object of wasting time or of scoring points, but to present strongly the claims of those who find it necessary to go to some other part of the Empire. My hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary, in the course of an interruption, suggested that in the insurance institutions of this country, when a man goes abroad his policy becomes null and void. I have as large an experience of life insurance at the present moment as anyone in this House. I am interested in one of the largest of the offices. I can only say that the hon. Gentleman's statement is news to me.
§ Sir K. WOOD
Other conditions had to prevail. I am fully aware of the extensive duties which the right hon. Gentleman performs, and I can tell the House that in connection with his own office other conditions have to prevail in the case of people who go abroad.
The office with which I am connected pays very large sums away every year in the way of annuities of the nature of pensions for which contributors have paid contributions. I do not know of a single instance of an office where the annuity is cancelled merely because the man or woman has gone from this country to some other part of the British Empire. We know from what has been said to-night that there can be no ground for withholding this benefit from contributors for actuarial reasons. I am sure that the Minister cannot claim that 2145 this is necessary in order that the rest of the scheme may be solvent. If that were so, it would be a very severe condemnation of the scheme. The only argument put forward by Ministers in opposition to this proposal, is that it is administratively impossible. While the right hon. Gentleman was away from the House a speech was made by an hon. Member who administers the funds of a large trade union, with beneficiaries all over the world. He is able to let them have their benefits; he is able, through his organisation, to distribute the benefits, and I venture to say that no mistakes are made by his union in doing it and that they have not made their scheme insolvent. What is possible for a trade union ought surely to be possible for a great Government Department.
The other point that has been pressed, very naturally, is that if this course is persisted in by the Government, they will be striking a serious blow at the cause of emigration. Empire settlement is of the greatest moment to us, not only on sentimental but on economic grounds. Every inducement that we can offer to those who go abroad to feel that they are carrying with them the full rights of citizenship of the Empire, should be encouraged. I recognise the difficulty in which the Minister is placed owing to the Rules of the House. He cannot speak again without leave. Even if he agree with the views expressed without a single exception in every quarter of the House, I am afraid that he cannot, owing to the procedure, make an alteration of this kind in another place without infringing the privileges of this House. I hope, therefore, that the right hon. Gentleman will ask for the leave of the House now, in order that he may speak again and assure us that he is prepared to fall in with a universal wish.
§ 10.0 P.M.
I can, of course, speak only with the leave of the House, but in the circumstances, seeing that when I spoke before the House was very much emptier than it is now, I hope I may be allowed to repeat some of the things which I said then. If will be recognised that I have every possible inducement to sympathise with the purpose of this Amendment, and to accept it if I can. I do not like to have hon. Members suggest that we are taking away 2146 something for which contributors have paid and for which they ought to receive the benefits to which they have been led to expect that they were entitled. Still less do I like to have it suggested that we are doing anything which would hinder the free passage between this country and the Dominions of those who may desire to find better scope for their activities abroad. Therefore, I have every inducement to say, "Yes, I accept this Amendment." But I cannot do so, because I cannot find how it is possible administratively to work a provision of that kind. [HON. MEMBERS: "Ask the trade unions."] Someone says the trade unions are working on these lines. I do not know what the conditions are in those cases, or what are the circumstances. Someone else said that it was possible to pay pensions to civil servants and their dependants when they settled abroad. I pointed out that in that case the pensions were fixed and the abode of the pensioner was known. Obviously, there was no difficulty in cases of that kind.
In this case we are not dealing with fixed' pensions, but with pensions which vary according to the circumstances. Take the case of a widow, which I mentioned before. The pension ceases if she re-marries. The allowances to her children vary according to the age of the children, and they cease at a certain age. All these points require "touch" between the administrative machine and. the individual concerned. It is points like that which make it absolutely impossible to undertake the responsibility for the payment of benefits under the conditions of the Bill to people who may be in quite remote parts of the world, separated by long distances from civilisation, out of reach and out of touch. An hon. Member suggested that if that were so, we might substitute for the proposal of the Amendment a surrender value. I wonder whether hon. Members have thought out what that means. Take the case of a widow in receipt of a pension, of 10s. which is to cease when she remarries. What are you to do with her when she goes abroad? Are you to give her the surrender value? Suppose that she comes back here and re-marries. She then has both the surrender value and the marriage.
Hon. Members must see that there are; very serious difficulties in giving a 2147 surrender value in such cases, even apart from financial considerations. I say, further, that if you were to begin giving surrender values to people who went abroad, I do not see how you could stop at the British Empire; you would ho obliged to give it to those who went abroad to other parts of the world You would then find that you would get a good many other classes of cases to which you would be asked to give the surrender value. That would wreck she scheme. We have no fund with which to pay surrender values, and payments would be made at the expense of the other contributors or of the solvency of the scheme. I am making this statement, not out of a desire to score in debate, but because there are practical difficulties in the way of the proposal, and I cannot accept the Amendment.
§ Mr. LUNN
I am not a little astonished at the Minister's argument with regard to the difficulties of administering this scheme for anyone who goes to any part of the British Empire. I think his argument is very thin indeed. We have bridged the gulf very much indeed between the Dominions and the Mother Country in recent years. As I happen to be a member of the Overseas Committee, I am astonished at what he says in regard to dealing with people of this kind. I do not think there is any difficulty of any kind in providing that his Department could be in touch with anyone who leaves this country and goes to any part of the British Empire. Knowing there are thousands of people who want to go to the British Empire, he is, as a Tory Minister, taking a step to stop these people, and I think he, in their interests, should take steps to remove this difficulty and not put another block in their way.
Sir CLEMENT KINLOCH COOKE
As I have not been here during the whole of the Debate, I cannot follow all the arguments that have been used. As far as I can remember with regard to the pre-War pensioners, this difficulty was overcome. It was found possible to give pre-War pensioners their pensions if they left this country. I venture to think it would be at least worth while trying to see if it be possible to overcome this administrative difficulty and see whether, 2148 for these widows who migrate to parts of the British Empire, it will not be possible to overcome these difficulties that stand in the way.
Mr. T. WILLIAMS
When the right hon. Gentleman told the House that his only objection to responding to the general call that has been made to him is the question of administrative difficulties, various interjections were made. He ignored them all. I should like to ask him if he will tell us what administrative difficulties stand in the way of permitting an old-age pensioner who migrates to any part of the Dominions to receive his old age pension in case he joins one of his children who have gone out under one of the migration schemes. It seems to me that payment, instead of being paid weekly, could be paid monthly or quarterly as the case may be. Through your own councils you could devise ways and means and suitable means of payment for old-age pensioners who have gone over to live with members of their family.
Regarding the children, one can readily see that difficulties will arise here and there, but will the right boa. Gentleman deny that the Secretary of State for the Colonies is persistent in telling the House that in the case of children who go over under various emigration schemes, constant attention is paid to them by some organisation set up by this country and the Dominion to which they emigrate. If they can be visited for purposes of seeing that the conditions under which they work are reasonable, then obviously some machinery can be used for paying the pension when they go abroad. With regard to the widow, she may be a very elusive creature, and there may be difficulties. I hope we shall see something very different from the exhibition we saw-on Wednesday night, when those Members of the Government who spoke in favour of an Amendment voted against it. I hope they will express their real feelings in support of the Amendment inside the Lobby, unless the right hon. Gentleman responds much nearer to the Amendment than he has done.
§ Question put, "That those words be there inserted in the Bill."
§ The House divided: Ayes, 135: Noes, 253.2111
|Division No. 307.]||AYES.||[8.2 p.m.|
|Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West)||Bromley, J.||Davies, Ellis (Denbigh, Denbigh)|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff. Cannock)||Brown, James (Ayr and Bute)||Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)|
|Alexander, A. V. (Sheffield, Hillsbro')||Buchanan, G.||Day, Colonel Harry|
|Ammon, Charles George||Cape, Thomas||Dennison, R.|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Charleton, H. C.||Duncan, C.|
|Baker, J. (Wolverhampton, Bliston)||Clowes, S.||Dunnlco, H.|
|Baker, Walter||Cluse, W. S.||Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty)|
|Barker, G. (Monmouth, Abertillery)||Clynes, Rt. Hon. John R.||Edwards, John H. (Accrington)|
|Barnes, A.||Collins, Sir Godfrey (Greenock)||England, Colonel A.|
|Barr, J.||Compton, Joseph||Fenby, T. D.|
|Batey, Joseph||Connolly, M.||Forrest, W.|
|Beckett, John (Gateshead)||Cowan, D. M. (Scottish Universities)||Garro-Jones, Captain G. M.|
|Benn, Captain Wedgwood (Leith)||Crawfurd, H. E.||Gibbins, Joseph|
|Broad, F. A.||Dalton, Hugh||Gillett, George M.|
|Bromfield, William||Davies, Evan (Ebbw Vale)||Greenall, T.|
|Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne)||Macdonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Spencer, G. A. (Broxtowe)|
|Grenfell, D. H. (Glamorgan)||MacLaren, Andrew||Stamford, T. W.|
|Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||March, S.||Stephen, Campbell|
|Groves, T.||Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.)||Sutton, J. E.|
|Grundy, T. W.||Murnin, H.||Taylor, B. A.|
|Guest, J. (York, Hemsworth)||Oliver, George Harold||Thomson, Trevelyan (Middlesbro. W.)|
|Guest, Dr. L. Haden (Southwark, N.)||Paling, W.||Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton, E.)|
|Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton)||Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan)||Thurtle, E.|
|Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Hardie, George D.||Ponsonby, Arthur||Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. C. P.|
|Harney, E. A.||Potts, John S.||Varley, Frank B.|
|Hayday, Arthur||Purcell, A. A.||Viant, S. P.|
|Hayes, John Henry||Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)||Wallhead, Richard C.|
|Henderson, Rt. Hon. A, (Burnley)||Riley, Ben||Walsh, Rt. Hon. Stephen|
|Henderson, T. (Glasgow)||Ritson, J.||Warne, G. H.|
|Hirst, G. H.||Roberts, Rt. Hon. F. O.(W. Bromwich)||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)|
|Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Robertson, J. (Lanark, Bothwell)||Watts-Morgan, Lt-Col. D. (Rhondda)|
|Hudson, J. H. (Huddersfield)||Robinson, Sir T. (Lanes., Stretford)||Webb, Rt. Hon. Sidney|
|Hutchison, Sir Robert (Montrose)||Robinson, W. C.(Yorks, W. R., Elland)||Wedgwood, Rt. Hon. Josiah|
|John, William (Rhondda, West)||Scrymgeour, E.||Westwood, J.|
|Johnston, Thomas (Dundee)||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)||Whiteley, W.|
|Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Simon, Rt. Hon. Sir John||Wiggins, William Martin|
|Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)||Sinclair, Major Sir A. (Caithness)||Williams, C. P. (Denbigh, Wrexham)|
|Kelly, W. T.||Sitch, Charles H.||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Kennedy, T.||Slesser, Sir Henry H.||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Lansoury, George||Smillie, Robert||Windsor, Walter|
|Lawson, John James||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)||Wright, W.|
|Lee, F.||Smith, H. B. Lees- (Keighley)||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Lindley, F.W.||Smith, Rennie (Penistone)|
|Livingstone, A. M.||Snell, Harry||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Lunn, William||Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip||Mr. Percy Harris and Major Hore-|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel||Colfox, Major Wm. Phillips||Harvey, G. (Lambeth, Kennington)|
|Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James T.||Cope, Major William||Haslam, Henry C.|
|Ainsworth, Major Charles||Couper, J. B.||Hawke, John Anthony|
|Alexander, E. E. (Leyton)||Courthope, Lieut.-Col. Sir George L.||Henderson, Capt. R. R. (Oxf'd, Henley)|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.||Crook, C. W.||Henderson, Lieut.-Col. V. L. (Bootle)|
|Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid W.||Crooke, J. Smedley (Deritend)||Henn, Sir Sydney H.|
|Ashmead-Bartlett, E.||Crookshank, Col. C. de W. (Berwick)||Henniker-Hughan, Vice-Adm. Sir A.|
|Astbury, Lieut.-Commander F. W.||Crookshank, Cpt. H.(Lindsey, Gainsbro)||Herbert, S.(York, N. R., Scar. & Wh'by)|
|Astor, Viscountess||Cunliffe, Joseph Herbert||Hilton, Cecil|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Curzon, Captain Viscount||Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Dalziel, Sir Davison||Hogg, Rt. Hon. Sir D.(St. Marylebone)|
|Balniel, Lord||Davidson, J. (Hertf'd, Hemel Hempst'd)||Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard|
|Banks, Reginald Mitchell||Davidson, Major-General Sir John H.||Holt, Captain H. P.|
|Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Davies, A. V. (Lancaster, Royton)||Homan, C. W. J.|
|Barnen, Major Sir Richard||Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil)||Hopkins, J. W. W.|
|Barnston, Major Sir Harry||Davies, Sir Thomas (Cirencester)||Horlick, Lieut.-Colonel J. N.|
|Beamish. Captain T. P. H.||Dean, Arthur Wellesley||Howard, Capt. Hon. D. (Cumb., N.)|
|Beckett, Sir Gervase (Leeds, N.)||Drewe, C.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry Cavendish-||Edmondson, Major A. J.||Hudson, H. S. (Cumb'l'nd, Whiteh'n)|
|Bethell, A.||Everard, W. Lindsay||Hume-Williams, Sir W. Ellis|
|Betterton, Henry B.||Fairfax, Captain J. G.||Hurst Gerald B.|
|Birchall, Major J. Dearman||Falle, Sir Bertram G.||Hutchison, G. A. Clark (Midl'n & p'bl's)|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Fermoy, Lord||Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S.|
|Bowyer Capt G. E. W.||Fielden, E. B.||Jackson, Sir H. (Wandsworth, Cen'l)|
|Brass, Captain W.||Finburgh, S.||Jacob, A. E.|
|Brassey, Sir Leonard||Fleming, D. P.||Jephcott, A. R.|
|Briggs, J. Harold||Foxcroft, Captain C. T.||Joynson-Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Fraser, Captain Ian||Kennedy, A. R. (Preston)|
|Brocklebank, C. E. R.||Gadie, Lieut.-Col. Anthony||Kidd, J. (Linlithgow)|
|Brooke, Brigadier-General C. R. I.||Ganzoni, Sir John||King, Captain Henry Douglas|
|Broun-Lindsay, Major H.||Gates, Percy||Knox, Sir Alfred|
|Brown, Maj. D.C.(N'th'l'd., Hexham)||Gibbs, Col. Rt. Hon. George Abraham||Lamb, J. O.|
|Buckingham, Sir H.||Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John||Lane-Fox, Colonel George R.|
|Bullock, Captain M.||Glyn, Major R. G. C.||Little, Dr. E. Graham|
|Burman, J. B.||Goff, Sir Park|
|Burney, Lieut.-Com. Charles D.||Grace, John||Loder, J. de V.|
|Burton, Colonel H. W.||Greene, W. P. Crawford||Looker, Herbert William|
|Butler, Sir Geoffrey||Greenwood, William (Stockport)||Lynn, Sir R. J.|
|Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)||MacAndrew Charles Glen|
|Campbell, E. T.||Guest, Capt. Rt. Hon. F. E. (Bristol, N.)||McDonnell, Colonel Hon. Angus|
|Cassels, J. D.||Gunston, Captain D. W.||Macintyre, Ian|
|Cecil, Rt. Hon. Sir Evelyn (Aston)||Hacking, Captain Douglas H.||McLean, Major A.|
|Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton||Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)||Macmillan, Captain H.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Ladywood)||Hall, Vice-Admiral Sir R. (Eastbourne)||McNeill, Rt. Hon. Ronald John|
|Charteris, Brigadier-General J.||Hammersley, S. S.||Maitland, Sir Arthur D. Steel-|
|Christie, J. A.||Hanbury, C.||Makins, Brigadier-General E.|
|Clarry, Reginald George||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Manningham-Buller, Sir Mervyn|
|Clayton, G. C.||Harland, A.||Margesson, Captain D.|
|Cockerill, Brigadier-General G. K.||Harrison, G. J. C.||Meller, R. J.|
|Milne, J. S. Wardlaw-||Radford, E. A.||Styles, Captain H. Walter|
|Mitchell, S. (Lanark, Lanark)||Raine, W.||Sugden, Sir Wilfrid|
|Mitchell, W. Foot (Saffron Walden)||Ramsden, E.||Tasker, Major R. Inigo|
|Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.||Rawlinson, Rt. Hon. John Fredk. Peel||Thompson, Luke (Sunderland)|
|Moore, Sir Newton J.||Rawson, Alfred Cooper||Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)|
|Morden, Col. W. Grant||Rice, Sir Frederick||Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell-|
|Moreing, Captain A. H.||Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch'ts'y)||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Morrison-Bell, Sir Arthur Clive||Ropner, Major L.||Waddington, R.|
|Murchison, C. K.||Ruggles-Brise, Major E. A.||Wallace, Captain D. E.|
|Nall, Lieut.-Colonel Sir Joseph||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)||Warner, Brigadier-General W. W.|
|Nelson, Sir Frank||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)||Warrender. Sir Victor|
|Neville, R. J.||Sandeman, A. Stewart||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)||Sanders, Sir Robert A.||Wells, S. R.|
|Nuttall, Ellis||Shaw, R. G. (Yorks, W.R., Sowerby)||White, Lieut.-Colonel G. Dairymple|
|Oakley, T.||Shaw, Capt. W. W. (Wilts., Westb'y)||Williams, Com. C. (Devon, Torquay)|
|O'Connor, T. J. (Bedford, Luton)||Sheffield, Sir Berkeley||Williams. Herbert G. (Reading)|
|O'Neill, Major Rt. Hon. Hugh||Shepperson, E. W.||Wilson, Sir C. H. (Leeds, Central)|
|Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William||Sinclair, Col. T. (Queen's Univ., Belfast)||Wilson, R. R. (Stafford, Lichfield)|
|Pennefather, Sir John||Smith, R. W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)||Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl|
|Perkins, Colonel E. K.||Smithers, Waldron||Wise, Sir Fredric|
|Perring, William George||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)||Wolmer, Viscount|
|Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)||Spender Clay, Colonel H.||Womersley, W. J.|
|Pielou, D. P.||Sprot, Sir Alexander||Wood, B. C. (Somerset, Bridgwater)|
|Plicher, G.||Stanley, Col. Hon. G. F.(Will'sden, E.)||Wood, E. (Chest'r, Stalyb'dge & Hyde)|
|Pilditch, Sir Philip||Stanley, Hon. O. F. G. (Westm'eland)||Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W.)|
|Pownall, Lieut.-Colonel Assheton||Storry Deans, R.||Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hon. Sir L.|
|Preston, William||Stott, Lieut.-Colonel W. H.|
|Price, Major C. W. M.||Strickland, Sir Gerald||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Major Hennessy and Lord Stanley.|
|Division No. 308.]||AYES.||10.12 p.m.|
|Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West)||Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton)||Robertson, J. (Lanark, Bothwell)|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Robinson, W. C. (Yorks, W. R., Elland)|
|Alexander, A. V. (Sheffield, Hillsbro')||Hardie, George D.||Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter|
|Ammon, Charles George||Harney, E. A.||Saklatvala, Shapurji|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Harris, Percy A.||Salter, Dr. Alfred|
|Baker, J. (Wolverhampton, Bliston)||Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon||Scrymgeour, E.|
|Barker, G. (Monmouth, Abertillery)||Hayday, Arthur||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)|
|Barnes, A.||Hayes, John Henry||Sinclair, Major Sir A. (Caithness)|
|Barr, J.||Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley)||Sitch, Charles H.|
|Batey, Joseph||Henderson, T. (Glasgow)||Slesser, Sir Henry H.|
|Beckett, John (Gateshead)||Hirst, G. H.||Smillie, Robert|
|Benn, Captain Wedgwood (Leith)||Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)|
|Broad, F. A.||Hudson, J. H. (Huddersfield)||Smith, H. B. Lees- (Keighley)|
|Bromfield, William||Hutchison, Sir Robert (Montrose)||Smith, Rennie (Penistone)|
|Bromley, J.||Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath)||Snell, Harry|
|Brown, James (Ayr and Bute)||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip|
|Buchanan, G.||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Spencer, G. A. (Broxtowe)|
|Butt, Sir Alfred||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Stamford, T. W.|
|Cape, Thomas||Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)||Stephen, Campbell|
|Charieton, H. C.||Kelly, W. T.||Sutton, J. E.|
|Clowes, S.||Kennedy, T.||Taylor, R. A.|
|Cluse, W. S.||Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M.||Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton, E.)|
|Clynes, Rt. Hon. John R.||Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)|
|Compton, Joseph||Lansbury, George||Thurtle, E.|
|Connolly, M.||Lawson, John James||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Crawfurd, H. E.||Lee, F.||Varley, Frank B.|
|Dalton, Hugh||Lindley, F. W.||Viant, S. P.|
|Davies, Evan (Ebbw Vale)||Lowth, T.||Wallhead, Richard C.|
|Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)||Lunn, William||Walsh, Rt. Hon. Stephen|
|Day, Colonel Harry||MacLaren, Andrew||Warne, G. H.|
|Dennison, R.||March, S.||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)|
|Duncan, C.||Montague, Frederick||Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)|
|Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty)||Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.)||Webb, Rt. Hon. Sidney|
|Fenby, T. D.||Murnin, H.||Westwood, J.|
|Fisher, Rt. Hon. Herbert A. L.||Naylor, T. E.||Whiteley, W.|
|Garro-Jones, Captain G. M.||Oliver, George Harold||Wiggins, William Martin|
|Gibbins, Joseph||Paling, W.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Gillett, George M.||Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan)||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Greenall, T.||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne)||Ponsonby, Arthur||Windsor, Walter|
|Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)||Potts, John S.||Wright, W.|
|Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Purcell, A. A.||Young, E. Hilton (Norwich)|
|Groves, T.||Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Grundy, T. W.||Riley, Ben|
|Guest, J. (York, Hemsworth)||Ritson, J.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Guest, Dr. L. Haden (Southwark, N.)||Roberts, Rt. Hon. F. O.(W. Bromwich)||Sir Godfrey Collins and Mr.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel||Brown, Maj. D. C. (N'th'l'd., Hexham)||Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil)|
|Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James T.||Buckingham, Sir H.||Davies, Sir Thomas (Cirencester)|
|Ainsworth, Major Charles||Bullock, Captain M.||Dawson, Sir Philip|
|Alexander, E. E. (Leyton)||Burman, J. B.||Dean, Arthur Wellesley|
|Applin, Colonel R. V. K.||Burton, Colonel H. W.||Dixon, Captain Rt. Hon. H.|
|Ashmead-Bartlett, E.||Butler, Sir Geoffrey||Drewe, C.|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Edmondson. Major A. J.|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Campbell, E. T.||Edwards, John H. (Accrington)|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Cecil, Rt. Hon. Sir Evelyn (Aston)||Elveden, Viscount|
|Balniel, Lord||Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton||England, Colonel A.|
|Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Ladywood)||Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Weston-s.-M.)|
|Barnett, Major Richard W.||Charteris, Brigadier-General J.||Everard, W. Lindsay|
|Barnston, Major Sir Harry||Christie, J. A.||Fairfax, Capain J. G.|
|Beamish, Captain T. P. H.||Clarry, Reginald George||Falle, Sir Bertram G.|
|Beckett, Sir Gervase (Leeds, N.)||Clayton, G. C.||Falls, Sir Charles F.|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry Cavendish-||Cobb, Sir Cyril||Fielden, E. B.|
|Bethell, A.||Cockerill, Brigadier-General G. K.||Finburgh, S.|
|Betterton, Henry B.||Colfox, Major Wm. Phillips||Forrest, W.|
|Birchall, Major J. Dearman||Cooper, A. Duff||Foxcroft, Captain C. T.|
|Bird, Sir R. B. (Wolverhampton, W.)||Cope, Major William||Fraser, Captain Ian|
|Blades, Sir George Rowland||Couper, J. B.||Gadle, Lieut.-Col. Anthony|
|Blundell, F. N.||Courthope, Lieut.-Col. Sir George L.||Ganzoni, Sir John|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Crook, C. W.||Gates, Percy|
|Bowyer, Capt. G. E. W.||Crooke, J. Smadley (Deritend)||Gibbs, Col. Rt. Hon. George Abraham|
|Boyd-Carpenter, Major A.||Crookshank, Col. C. de W. (Berwick)||Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John|
|Brass, Captain W.||Crookshank, Cpt. H.(Lindsey, Gainsbro)||Goff, Sir Park|
|Brassey, Sir Leonard||Cunliffe, Joseph Herbert||Gower, Sir Robert|
|Briggs, J. Harold||Curzon, Captain Viscount||Grace, John|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Dalkeith, Earl of||Greene, W. P. Crawford|
|Brocklebank, C. E. R.||Dalziel, Sir Davison||Greenwood, William (Stockport)|
|Brooke, Brigadier-General C. R. I.||Davidson, J. (Hertf'd, Hemel Hempst'd)||Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)|
|Broun-Lindsay, Major H.||Davidson, Major-General Sir J. H.||Grotton, Colonel John|
|Grotrian, H. Brent||Loder, J. de V.||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)|
|Guest, Capt. Rt. Hon. F. E. (Bristol, N.)||Looker, Herbert William||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)|
|Gunston, Captain D. W.||Lynn, Sir R. J.||Sandeman, A. Stewart|
|Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)||Mac Andrew, Charles Glen||Sanders, Sir Robert A.|
|Hall, Capt. W. D'A. (Brecon & Rad.)||Macdonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Shaw, R. G. (Yorks, W. R., Sowerby)|
|Hammersley, S. S.||McDonnell, Colonel Hon. Angus||Shaw, Capt. W. W, (Wilts., Westb'y)|
|Hanbury, C.||Macintyre, Ian||Sheffield, Sir Berkeley|
|Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||McLean Major A.||Shepperson, E. w.|
|Harland, A.||Macmillan, Captain H.||Sinclair, Col. T. (Queen's Univ., Belfast)|
|Harrison, G. J. C.||McNeill, Rt. Hon. Ronald John||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Harvey, G. (Lambeth, Kennington)||MacRobert, Alexander M.||Spender Clay, Colonel H.|
|Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)||Maitland, Sir Arthur D. Steel-||Sprot, Sir Alexander|
|Haslam, Henry C.||Makins, Brigadier-General E.||Stanley, Col. Hon. G. F.(Will'sden, E.)|
|Hawke, John Anthony||Manningham-Buller, Sir Mervyn||Stanley, Lord (Fylde)|
|Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M.||Mason, Lieut.-Colonel Glyn K.||Stanley, Hon. O. F. G. (Westm'eland)|
|Henderson, Capt. R. R. (Oxf"d, Henley)||Meller, R. J.||Steel, Major Samuel Strang|
|Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.||Milne, J. S. Wardlaw-||Storry Deans, R.|
|Henn, Sir Sydney H.||Mitchell, S. (Lanark, Lanark)||Stott, Lieut.-Colonel W. H.|
|Hennessy, Major J. R. G.||Mitchell, W. Foot (Saffron Walden)||Strickland, Sir Gerald|
|Henniker-Hughan, Vice-Adm. Sir A.||Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.||Styles, Captain H. Walter|
|Herbert, S.(York, N. R., Scar. & Wh'by)||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)||Sugden, Sir Wilfrid|
|Hilton, Cecil||Moore, Sir Newton J.||Thompson, Luke (Sunderland)|
|Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.||Moore-Brabazon, Lieut.-Col. J. T. C.||Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)|
|Hogg, Rt. Hon. Sir D. (St. Marylebone)||Morden, Col. W. Grant||Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell-|
|Hohler, Sir Gerald Fitzroy||Moreing, Captain A. H.||Tinne, J. A.|
|Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard||Murchison, C. K.||Tryon. Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Homan, C. W. J.||Nall, Lieut.-Colonel Sir Joseph||Waddington, R.|
|Hope, Capt. A. O. J. (Warw'k, Nun.)||Nelson, Sir Frank||Wallace, Captain D. E.|
|Hopkins, J. W. W.||Neville, R. J.||Warner, Brigadier-General W. W.|
|Hopkinson, A. (Lancaster, Mossley)||Newman, Sir R. H, S. D. L. (Exeter)||Warrender, Sir Victor|
|Horlick, Lieut.-Colonel J. N.||Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G. (Ptrsf'd.)||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Howard, Capt. Hon. D. (Cumb., N.)||Nuttall, Ellis||Wells, S. R.|
|Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)||Oakley, T.||Wheler, Major Sir Granville C. H.|
|Hudson, R. S. (Cumberl'nd, Whiteh'n)||O'Connor, T. J. (Bedford, Luton)||White, Lieut.-Colonel G. Dairymple|
|Hume, Sir G. H.||O'Neill, Major Rt. Hon. Hugh||Williams, Com. C. (Devon, Torquay)|
|Hume-Williams, Sir W. Ellis||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William||Williams, C. P. (Denbigh, Wrexham)|
|Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer||Pennefather, Sir John||Williams, Herbert G. (Reading)|
|Kurd, Percy A.||Perkins, Colonel E. K.||Wilson, Sir C. H. (Leeds, Central)|
|Hurst, Gerald B.||Perring, William George||Wilson, M. J. (York, N, R., Richm'd)|
|Hutchison, G. A. Clark (Midl'n & P'bl's)||Peto, Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)||Wilson, R. R. (Stafford, Lichfield)|
|Inskip, Sir Thomas Walker H.||Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)||Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl|
|Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S.||Pielou, D. P.||Wise, Sir Fredric|
|Jackson, Sir H. (Wandsworth, Cen'l)||Pownall, Lieut.-Colonel Assheton||Wolmer, Viscount|
|Jacob, A. E.||Preston, William||Womersley, W. J.|
|Jephcott, A. R.||Radford, E. A.||Wood, B. C. (Somerset, Bridgwater)|
|Joynson-Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William||Raine, W.||Wood, E. (Chest'r, Stalyb'dge & Hyde)|
|Kidd, J. (Linlithgow)||Ramsden, E.||Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W.)|
|King, Captain Henry Douglas||Rawlinson, Rt. Hon. John Fredk. Peel||Wood, Sir S. Hill- (High Peak)|
|Knox, Sir Alfred||Rentoul, G. S.||Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hon. Sir L.|
|Lamb, J. Q.||Rice, Sir Frederick|
|Lane-Fox, Colonel George R.||Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch'ts'y)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Leigh, Sir John (Clapham)||Robinson, Sir T. (Lanes., Stretford)||Captain Douglas Hacking and|
|Little, Dr. E. Graham||Ropner, Major L.||Captain Margesson.|
|Locker-Lampson, G. (Wood Green)||Ruggles-Brise, Major E. A.|
§ Mr. HARRIS
I beg to move, on page 22, line 21, to leave out the word "three," and to insert instead thereof the word "six."
It is still a fact that there are people who have responsibilities in almost every part of the civilised world. We are still an island people and our adventurous nature takes us to all parts, not only of the Empire but of the world. It may be that a man dies in China or some distant land and his widow, owing to financial difficulties, goes to reside in another country. Some months elapse and she goes to claim the pension which her husband has contributed to and to which she is entitled by his contributions and by this Bill. Owing to the fact that three months have elapsed, her claim is disallowed. In a complicated Measure of 2152 this kind many things may arise. There is the question of illness. The hon. Member for Hereford (Mr. S. Roberts) instanced the case of a person insured under the Health Insurance Acts, resident in Paris, being struck down by a serious illness, staying in Paris for over three months and then forfeiting his rights. A similar case might arise in exactly the same circumstances under this Act. and because of the lapse of three months a woman might find herself deprived of money to which she was entitled by the contributions of her husband, purely because of circumstances quite outside her control. It is always a difficult thing to fix a reasonable period, but three months seems unnecessarily short. I suggest that six months would meet the needs of the case 2153 and would prevent any injustice. I think the Minister, having turned down the last Amendment, might, make this wry small concession. I do not believe it would interfere in any way with the financial calculations of the Act. It. would be very unfortunate if this Bill was to be based in its finance in any way on the supposition that many persons would fail to put in their claims within three months. I think this is a. very small concession, which would show that the right hon. Gentleman was desirous to meet all reasonable claims and to remove any possible sense of injustice.
Mr. T. THOMSON
I beg to second the Amendment.
I wish to assure the right hon. Gentleman that whatever ho may think of our remarks on the previous occasion we are as earnest and as serious in moving this Amendment as we were on the last, and I hope it will meet with more sympathetic consideration. I should like to ask the right hon. Gentleman whether a legal right and a moral right can be terminated by a lapse of time of three months, or even for that matter of six months. What would he think of any ordinary insurance company if they attempted to repudiate their liabilities because a claim was not made within three months? In the light of our experience in dealing with the administration of pensions under the Ministry of Pensions and the Old Age Pensions Act, many of us must know of cases where there has been delay in making claims, and on account of that delay there has been great difficulty in getting payment. The right is there, whether the claim is made in three months or six months. In case of sickness, a considerable time may elapse beyond the three months, so that the claim cannot be made. In equity, I hope that the Minister will make this concession.
The hon. Member who moved the Amendment admitted that on administrative grounds it is necessary to have some limitation to the time within which claims can be made. He suggests six months. We have put down three months. If we had put down six months, he would have suggested 12 months. It may well be a matter of opinion what should be the precise period to be inserted in the Bill. We have followed the precedent of the Old Age Pensions Act, 1911, which laid down the 2154 period of three months, and I do not see why, and I have not heard any argument to show why, we should change that.
The point raised by the right hon. Gentleman does not answer the issue so far as this Bill is concerned. It is true that in the Old Age Pensions Act 1911, a period of three months was inserted. That was not a contributory scheme. This is a contributory scheme.
It would not meet all I would like to see, but six months would be quite as good as three months, and much better in certain cases. Take an aged couple, old age pensioners, who desire to visit a son or daughter in Australia. It will be impossible for that to be done without their losing the old age pension under this scheme. If six months were allowed, and three months were occupied in completing the return journey, that would give them a chance of spending three months with their children who have gone out to build up the Empire and to provide the currants and raisins on which Imperial preference is given. I hope the right hon. Gentleman, will realise that three months is too short a period. The party opposite have always claimed that they are the party who want to build up the Empire. They want to see the sons of Empire growing raisins in Australia, and some old people may wish to see their sons growing those raisins in Australia. On these and other grounds, I hope the Amendment will be accepted.
§ Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY
There is only one point I would add to the excellent speech just delivered. The Old Age Pensions Act was a very simple Measure compared with this. It dealt with people who had reached the age of TO, whereas this Bill deals with widows, orphans and old age pensioners. I think the Parliamentary Secretary agrees with me on this matter, and I hope he will bring his powers of persuasion to bear upon his chief. The analogy is not complete. There is a very good case for making it six months instead of three. We are considering the time it takes to reach the. Antipodes and to come back, and three months is too short a time.
I support the Amendment. It is time that some protest was made against the habit which is growing up of establishing Statutes of Limitation in favour of the Government as against other classes of the community. The principal Statute of Limitations lays down six years as the period within which a debt may be recovered. That has been reduced in the case of ex-soldiers to three years, and now we have a proposal to have a Statute of Limitations against these old age pensioners with a period of three months. This gives an opportunity to the right hon. Gentleman to meet the arguments which he found it administratively impossible to meet before. Everything that could be adduced in favour of the previous Amendment can be adduced in favour of this, but the administrative difficulties which prevented the right hon. Gentleman from accepting the former Amendments do not operate to prevent him from accepting this Amendment. It is a
§ monstrous thing to have these old age pensioners who have paid for their pensions deprived of them after the period of three months. It is a debt due to them from the State, just as much as the pension given to the ex-Lord Chancellor is a debt due to him by the State, and he can go away to the South of France and spend three happy months there, while the old age pensioner who goes to visit his son is Canada is heavily mulcted by being deprived of the money which is duo to him from the State. The right hon. Gentleman should make the concession which is asked for. There is no defence on this point,. He had a better defence on the previous Amendment which, if it had not been for the very rigorous whip applied by my right hon. Friend, would have resulted in the defeat of the Government.
§ Question put, "That the word 'three' stand part of the Bill."
§ The House divided: Ayes, 263; Noes, 130.2159
|Division No. 309.]||AYES.||[10.35 p.m.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel||Clarry, Reginald George||Gates, Percy|
|Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James||T. Clayton, G. C.||Gibbs, Col Rt. Hon. George Abraham|
|Ainsworth, Major Charles||Cobb, Sir Cyril||Gilmour, Lt.-Col, Rt. Hon. Sir John|
|Alexander, E. E. (Leyton)||Cochrane, Commander Hon. A. O.||Glyn, Major R. G. C.|
|Applin, Colonel R. V. K.||Cockerill, Brigadier-General G. K.||Goff, Sir Park|
|Ashmead Bartlett, E.||Colfox, Major Wm. Phillips||Gower, Sir Robert|
|Astbury, Lieut.-Commander F. W.||Cooper, A. Duff||Grace, John|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Couper, J. B.||Greene, W. P. Crawford|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Courthope, Lieut.-Col. Sir George L.||Gretton, Colonel John|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Crook, C. W.||Grotrian, H. Brent|
|Balniel, Lord||Crooke, J. Smedley (Derltend)||Gunston, Captain D. W.|
|Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Crookshank, Col. C. de W. (Berwick)||Hacking, Captain Douglas H.|
|Barnett, Major Sir Richard||Crookshank, Cpt. H. (Lindsey, Gainsbro)||Hall, Lieut.-Col, Sir F. (Dulwich)|
|Beamish, Captain T. P. H.||Cunliffe, Joseph Herbert||Hall, Capt. W. D'A. (Brecon & Rad.)|
|Beckett, Sir Gervase (Leeds, N.)||Curzon, Captain Viscount||Hammersley, S. S.|
|Betheil, A.||Dalkeith, Earl of||Hanbury, C.|
|Betterton, Henry B.||Dalziel, Sir Davison||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry|
|Birchall, Major J. Dearman||Davidson, J.(Hertf'd, Hemel Hempst'd)||Harland, A.|
|Bird, Sir R. B. (Wolverhampton, W.)||Davidson, Major-General Sir J. H.||Harrison, G. J. C.|
|Blundell, F. N.||Davies, A. V. (Lancaster, Royton)||Harvey, G, (Lambeth, Kennington)|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Davies, Maj. Geo. F.(Somerset, Yeovil)||Harvey, Majors. E. (Devon, Totnes)|
|Bowyer, Capt. G. E. W.||Davies, Sir Thomas (Cirencester)||Haslam, Henry C.|
|Boyd-Carpenter, Major A.||Dawson, Sir Philip||Hawke, John Anthony|
|Brass, Captain W.||Dean, Arthur Wellesley||Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M.|
|Brassey, Sir Leonard||Dixey, A. C.||Henderson, Capt. R. R. (Oxford, Henley)|
|Briggs, J. Harold||Dixon, Captain Rt. Hon. Herbert||Henderson. Lieut.-Col. V. L. (Bootle)|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Drewe, C.||Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.|
|Brocklebank, C. E. R.||Edmondson, Major A. J.||Henn, Sir Sydney H.|
|Brooke, Brigadier-General C. R. I.||Elliot, Captain Walter E.||Hennessy, Major J. R. G.|
|Broun-Lindsay, Major H.||Elveden, Viscount||Henniker-Hushan, Vice-Adm. Sir A.|
|Brown, Maj. D. C. (N'th'l'd., Hexham)||England, Colonel A.||Herbert, S.(York, N. R., Scar. & Wh'by)|
|Buckingham, Sir H.||Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Weston-s.-W.)||Hilton, Cecil|
|Bullock, Captain M.||Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer.)||Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.|
|Burman, J. B.||Everard, W. Lindsay||Hogg, Rt. Hon. Sir D. (St. Marylebone)|
|Burton, Colonel H. W.||Fairfax, Capain J. G.||Hohler, Sir Gerald Fitzroy|
|Butler, Sir Geoffrey||Falle, Sir Bertram G.||Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard|
|Butt, Sir Alfred||Palls, Sir Charles F.||Holt, Captain H. P.|
|Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Fielden, E. B.||Hope, Capt. A. O. J. (Warw'k, Nun.)|
|Cecil, Rt. Hon. Sir Evelyn (Aston)||Finburgh, S.||Hopkins, J. W. W.|
|Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton||Forrest, W.||Hopkinson, A. (Lancaster, Mossley)|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Ladywood)||Foxcroft, Captain C. T.||Horlick, Lieut.-Colonel J. N.|
|Charteris, Brigadier-General J.||Fraser, Captain Ian||Howard, Capt. Hon. D. (Cumb., N.)|
|Christie, J. A.||Gadie, Lieut.-Col. Anthony||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)|
|Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer||Ganzoni, Sir John||Hudson, S. S. (Cumberl'nd, Whiteh'n)|
|Hume, Sir G. H.||Murchison, C. K.||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer||Nall, Lieut.-Colonel Sir Joseph||Spender Clay, Colonel H.|
|Hurd, Percy A.||Nelson, Sir Frank||Sprot, Sir Alexander|
|Hurst, Gerald B.||Neville, R. J.||Stanley, Col. Hon. G. F.(Will'sden, E.)|
|Hutchison, G. A. Clark (Midl'n & P bl's)||Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)||Stanley, Lord (Fylde)|
|Inskip, Sir Thomas Walker H.||Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G.(Ptrsf'd)||Stanley, Hon. O. F. G. (Westm'eland)|
|Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S.||Nuttall, Ellis||Steel, Major Samuel Strang|
|Jackson, Sir H. (Wandsworth, Cen'l)||Oakley, T.||Storry Deans, R.|
|Jacob, A. E.||O'Connor, T. J. (Bedford, Luton)||Stott, Lieut.-Colonel W. H.|
|Jephcott, A. R.||O'Neill, Major Rt. Hon. Hugh||Strickland, Sir Gerald|
|Joynson-Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William||Oman, Sir Charles William C.||Stuart, Crichton-, Lord C.|
|Kidd, J. (Linlithgow)||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William||Styles, Captain H. Walter|
|King, Captain Henry Douglas||Pennefather, Sir John||Sugden, Sir Wilfrid|
|Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Perkins, Colonel E. K.||Thompson, Luke (Sunderland)|
|Knox, Sir Alfred||Perring, William George||Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)|
|Lamb, J. Q.||Peto, Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)||Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell-|
|Lane-Fox, Colonel George R.||Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Leigh, Sir John (Clapham)||Philipson, Mabel||Waddington, R.|
|Lister, Cunliffe-, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip||Pielou, D. P.||Wallace, Captain D. E.|
|Little, Dr. E. Graham||Pownall, Lieut.-Colonel Assheton||Warner, Brigadier-General W. W.|
|Loder, J. de V.||Preston, William||Warrender, Sir Victor|
|Lynn, Sir R. J.||Radford, E. A.||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|MacAndrew, Charles Glen||Raine, W.||Wells, S. R.|
|Macdonald, R. (Glasgow, Cathcart)||Ramsden, E.||Wheler, Major Sir Granville C. H.|
|McDonnell, Colonel Hon. Angus||Rawlinson, Rt. Hon. John Fredk, Peel||While, Lieut.-Colonel G. Dairymple|
|Maclntyre, Ian||Rawson Alfred Cooper||Williams, Com. C. (Devon, Torquay)|
|McLean, Major A.||Rentoul, G. S.||Williams, Herbert G, (Reading)|
|Macmillan, Captain H.||Rice, Sir Frederick||Wilson, Sir C. H. (Leeds, Central)|
|McNeill, Rt. Hon. Ronald John||Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch'ts'y)||Wilson, M. J. (York, N. R., Rtchm'd)|
|Mac Robert, Alexander M.||Robarts, Samuel (Hereford, Hereford)||Wilson, R. R. (Stafford, Lichfield)|
|Maitland, Sir Arthur D. Steel-||Robinson, Sir T. (Lancs., Stretford)||Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl|
|Makins, Brigadier-General E.||Ropner, Major L.||Wise, Sir Fredric|
|Manningham-Buller, Sir Mervyn||Ruggles-Brise, Major E. A.||Wolmer, Viscount|
|Margesson, Captain D.||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)||Womersley, W. J.|
|Mason, Lieut.-Col. Glyn K.||Rye, F. G.||Wood, B. C. (Somerset, Bridgwater)|
|Meller, R. J.||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)||Wood, Rt. Hon. E. (York, W. R., Ripon)|
|Mitchell, S. (Lanark, Lanark)||Sandeman, A. Stewart||Wood, E. (Chest'r, Stalyb'ge & Hyde)|
|Mitchell, W. Foot (Saffron Walden)||Sanders, Sir Robert A.||Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W.)|
|Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.||Sanderson, Sir Frank||Wood, Sir S. Hill- (High Peak)|
|Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. H. (Ayr)||Shaw, R. G. (Yorks, W. R., Sowerby)||Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hon. Sir L.|
|Moore, Sir Newton J.||Shaw, Capt. W. W. (Wilts., Westb'y)||Wragg, Herbert|
|Moore-Brabazon, Lieut.-Col. J. T. C.||Sheffield, Sir Berkeley|
|Morden, Col. W. Grant||Shepperson, E. W.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Moreing, Captain A. H.||Sinclair, Col. T. (Queen's Univ., Belfast)||Major Sir Harry Barnston and|
|Morrison-Bell, Sir Arther Clive||Skelton, A. N.||Major Cope.|
|Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West)||Grenfell, D. H. (Glamorgan)||March, S.|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Montague, Frederick|
|Alexander, A. V. (Sheffield, Hillsbro')||Groves, T.||Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.)|
|Ammon, Charles George||Grundy, T. W.||Murnin, H.|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Guest, J. (York, Hemsworth)||Naylor, T. E.|
|Barnes, A.||Guest, Dr. L. Haden (Southwark, N.)||Oliver, George Harold|
|Barr, J.||Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton)||Paling, W.|
|Batey, Joseph||Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan)|
|Benn, Captain Wedgwood (Leith)||Hardie, George D.||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.|
|Broad, F. A.||Harney, E. A.||Ponsonby, Arthur|
|Bromley, J.||Harris, Percy A.||Potts. John S.|
|Brown, James (Ayr and Bute)||Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon||Purcell, A. A.|
|Cape, Thomas||Hayday, Arthur||Richardson, R. (Hougbton-le-Spring)|
|Charleton, H. C.||Hayes, John Henry||Riley, Ben|
|Clowes, S.||Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley)||Ritson, J.|
|Cluse, W. S.||Henderson, T. (Glasgow)||Roberts. Rt. Hon. F. O.(W. Bromwich)|
|Compton, Joseph||Hirst, G. H.||Robertson, J. (Lanark, Bothwell)|
|Connolly, M.||Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Robinson, W. C.(Yorks, W. R., Elland)|
|Crawfurd, H. E.||Hudson, J. H. (Hudderfield)||Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter|
|Dalton, Hugh||Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath)||Saklatvala, Shapurji|
|Davies, Evan (Ebbw Vale)||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Salter, Dr. Alfred|
|Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Scrymgeour, E.|
|Day, Colonel Harry||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)|
|Dennison, R.||Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)||Sinclair, Major Sir A. (Caithness)|
|Duncan, C.||Kelly, W. T.||Sitch, Charles H.|
|Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty)||Kennedy, T.||Slesser, Sir Henry H.|
|Edwards, John H. (Accrington)||Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M.||Smillie, Robert|
|Fenby, T. D.||Lansbury, George||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)|
|Fisher, Rt. Hon. Herbert A. L.||Lawson, John James||Smith, H. B. Lees- (Keighley)|
|Garro-Jones, Captain G. M.||Lee, F.||Smith, Rennic (Penistone)|
|Gibbins, Joseph||Lindley, F. W.||Snell, Harry|
|Gillett, George M.||Lowth, T.||Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip|
|Graham, D. M. (Lanark, Hamilton)||Lunn, William||Spencer, G. A. (Broxtowe)|
|Greenall, T.||Macdonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Stamford, T. W.|
|Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne)||MacLaren, Andrew||Stephen, Campbell|
|Sutton, J. E.||Walsh, Rt. Hon. Stephen||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Taylor, R. A.||Warne, G. H.||Windsor, Walter|
|Thomson, Trevelyan (Middlesbro, W.)||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)||Wright, W.|
|Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton, E.)||Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)||Young, E. Hilton (Norwich)|
|Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)||Webb, Rt. Hon. Sidney||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Thurtle, E.||Westwood, J.|
|Tinker, John Joseph||Whiteley, W.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Varley, Frank B.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.||Sir Godfrey Collins and Sir Robert|
|Viant, S. P.||Williams, C. P. (Denbigh, Wrexham)||Hutchison.|
|Wallhead, Richard C.||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
Question, "That the Debate be now adjourned," put, and agreed to.