HC Deb 02 May 1944 vol 399 cc1194-5
46. Miss Ward

asked the Prime Minister, in view of the fact that the White Paper on Service Pay and Allowances still leaves anomalies uncorrected, if he will appoint a Select Committee to examine the whole position and make recommendations.

Mr. Attlee

No, Sir. If the hon. Lady is referring to the large number of minor questions which were raised in the course of the recent discussions on Service pay and allowances, these are being examined as expeditiously as possible by the Departments concerned, and any changes which are found to be necessary or desirable will be made.

Miss Ward

In view of the fact that this was an informal committee, has a complete note been taken of all the points raised?

Mr. Attlee


Mr. Bellenger

As this informal committee did not deal with innumerable anomalies which arise in the Service and other Departments, how is it possible for Parliament to exercise any control or give any assistance to Service Departments unless we have some machinery for doing it?

Mr. Attlee

The machinery is there. If my hon. Friend will send in any particular instance to the Service Department, it will be looked into.

Mr. Gallacher

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there is a very strong feeling amongst the mothers of serving soldiers and that they are now beginning to organise? Are we to wait until there are demonstrations all over the country?

47. Mr. Kendall

asked the Prime Minister what steps have been taken to fulfil the promise made in the White Paper on Service Pay and Allowances in respect of women in the Forces; and when the increases are brought into operation will they be made retrospective to the first pay day nearest to 1st May 1944.

Mr. Attlee

So far as pay is concerned, increases have already been authorised corresponding to those for the men, but at the usual two-thirds rate. In the case of widows who are eligible, by reason of their service with the Forces for children's allowances, certain details are now being worked out. The answer to the second part of the hon. Member's Question is Yes, Sir.

48. Commander Sir Archibald Southby

asked the Prime Minister whether he is prepared to reconsider the rates of allowances for children of men serving in the Forces set out in the Command Paper 3521, with a view to the allowance for each child being increased to 15s.

Mr. Attlee

No, Sir.

Sir A. Southby

While thanking the right hon. Gentleman for his answer, and for the concessions regarding pay and allowances which have been generally appreciated, may I, as a member of conference which discussed the matter with the Government, ask him whether he is not aware that the higher figure for children's allowances was asked for because it is impossible under existing conditions adequately to feed, clothe and maintain a child on 12s. 6d.? Will he therefore ask the Prime Minister whether he would be prepared to receive further representations on this point?

Mr. Attlee

No, Sir. These matters have been fully considered.