HC Deb 09 May 1934 vol 289 cc1081-2
31. Mr. D. GRAHAM

asked the Minister of Health if he has had any applications for widows' pensions from widows of men who have paid employers' contributions to health insurance for such a number of years as would have entitled them to pension if their husbands had been employés instead of employers; is he aware that many men in this category, because of the long-continued depression, have been compelled to go out of business and have left their widows in poor circumstances; whether any action, by regulation or otherwise, has been taken by his Department to deal with such cases; and, if not, will he introduce legislation to remove what appears to be a just grievance in the minds of persons affected?


As regards the first and second parts of the question, it is believed that some applications from widows in the category referred to have been received. As regards the third part, action of the kind indicated is not possible within the existing scheme. As regards the last part, my right hon. Friend cannot undertake to introduce legislation on the lines suggested as there is no margin in the present contribution for employed persos available for the payment of pensions to persons other than the employés and their dependants.


Is the hon. Gentleman aware that quite a number of applications have already been received, and does he not think the time has come to deal with the matter?


The insurance scheme is for employés, and not for employers.