HC Deb 21 October 1920 vol 133 cc1047-8

asked the Minister of Pensions if he is aware that discharged soldiers and sailors are now applying for parish relief; is he aware that they were fit men when they joined the forces; and will he see that they receive proper pay and thus avoid the trouble of seeking rate aid?


The pension awarded to a discharged disabled man has, under the Royal Warrants and Orders in Council, to be assessed in accordance with the degree of his disablement, and I have no authority to award a pension except in accordance with this assessment. But I may point out that any man who considers that his assessment for pension does not adequately represent the extent of his disablement is, under present arrangements, entitled to appeal and to have his case reviewed by a Medical Appeal Board and by the Ministry.


Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us how many of these people are on the rates?


I cannot say that. I would like to point out that the Ministry of Pensions is, in my judgment legitimately, generous to all the men to whom disablement has been assessed.


May I ask whether the right hon. Gentleman is aware that Medical Boards are turning many men away without pensions who are clearly suffering as the result of their service, and whether any order has gone out to the Medical Boards on this subject, with a view to turning men away?


I know that my hon. Friend wrote me a most pathetic letter the other day. I would point out, however, that the supreme appeal tribunal is not under my jurisdiction at all. It is appointed by the Lord Chancellor, and really reconsiders any decisions which have been come to by my Board.

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