73. Sir F. HALL
asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether he is aware that a test action known as the United Post Office Workers v. Rex is now pending in the High Court; whether this action relates to arrears of war bonus for all categories of ex-service single men and Royal Engineers (special section) who enlisted after 7th September, 1915; and whether, in view of the nature of this case and the interest it has for so many ex-service men, he can state when a decision is likely to be given?
§ 79. Sir L. WORTHINGTON-EVANS
asked the Postmaster-General when he expects the cases of the men in the special sections will be decided finally?
Mr. F. HALL (Lord of the Treasury)
I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Postmaster-General to Question 73 and to answer at the same time the similar question asked by the right hon. Member for the Colchester Division of Essex. My right hon. Friend is aware that a number of Petitions of Right are about to be lodged; that the preliminary arrangements have been made through the solicitors acting for the staff; and that the Petitions have been designed with a view to ascertaining the position of certain civil servants who claim that they are entitled to War bonus in addition to the civil pay granted to them during their War service. The date upon which a final decision will be obtained depends on factors over which my right hon. Friend has no control, and a reliable forecast of the date cannot be given. I can only say that the Court will be asked to expedite the hearing as much as possible.
§ Mr. SPEAKER
The hon. Member can hardly expect anybody else to say what was in the mind of the Member who put down Question 79.
Is it not a fact that the Union of Post Office Workers is one of the specially-favoured trade unions of this country?