HC Deb 04 April 1944 vol 398 cc1789-90
11. Sir John Wardlaw-Milne

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is now in a position to state the decision of the Government regarding the financial provision to be made for members of the Forces on demobilisation, in view of the fact that there are a number of men already involved who are suffering hardship from want of financial assistance to enable them to engage in their former civilian activities.

Sir J. Grigg

I would refer my hon. Friend to the passage in the Prime Minister's broadcast on 26th March in which he explained that he was not in favour of disclosing our plans for demobilisation at the present time.

Sir J. Wardlaw-Milne

While quite appreciating the point of the Prime Minister's statement, may I ask my right hon. Friend does he not think there are distinct hardships for men who are demobilised at the present time, owing to illness or disabilities which prevent them from continuing in the war? Is it not very hard on those men if no financial provision is made for them, and if they have to wait until the end of the war before they can start their ordinary occupations?

Sir J. Grigg

While not necessarily agreeing with the suggestion of my hon. Friend, I can say that it certainly is a question which we have very much in mind.

Mr. Petherick

Is my right hon. Friend not aware that the time these gratuities are needed is on discharge, and not necessarily after the war?

50. Viscount Hinchingbrooke

asked the Prime Minister whether a bonus will be given to members of the Armed Forces on demobilisation in order to place them in the same position as civilians who have saved out of the comparative high wages being earned in industry; and, if so, what will be the approximate amount of this bonus.

The Prime Minister (Mr. Churchill)

His Majesty's Government do not consider the present as being a timely occasion for discussing the demobilisation plans.