HC Deb 06 August 1940 vol 363 cc1-3
2. Mr. Dobbie

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is now in a position to make a statement in regard to the Government's intention as to the degree of allowance they are prepared to make to the foster-mother of a young soldier, who makes an allotment to her for the purpose of keeping a home for his younger sister; and whether such child will rank for an allowance as the dependant of the soldier?

The Secretary of State for War (Mr. Eden)

Dependant's allowance for a foster-mother or a sister is admissible under exactly the same conditions and at the same rates as for a mother or any other dependant. Not more than one dependant's allowance can be issued in respect of any one soldier.

9. Mr. Mathers

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is now in a position to extend the concession in respect of Army allowances for adopted children to cover the case of children not legally adopted, but who have been maintained as part of a soldier's household before his enlistment, and are wholly dependent upon such maintenance?

Mr. Eden

The Service Departments normally only admit for "regulation" awards children who are legitimate or legitimated children or step-children of the soldier or his wife, or children who have been legally adopted. During the war, this provision has been extended to cover illegitimate children of the soldier or his wife born before their marriage, who are in fact being brought up as members of the household, and for whom no payment is being received from any other source. I am considering whether any extension is necessary.

Mr. George Griffiths

Do I understand the Minister to say that, if an illegitimate child has not been adopted although the husband of the wife is now serving, a wife can get an allowance? I have been trying to get one for five months and cannot get it, although, of course, it is not for myself.

Mr. Eden

The hon. Gentleman will appreciate that his formula is a little bit difficult to follow.

Mr. Griffiths

May I have a word with the right hon. Gentleman before he leaves to-day?