§ 41. Mr. Vernon Bartlett
asked the Minister of Pensions whether he is aware that civilian pensioners in many categories have received increases in their pensions in view of the increased cost of living; and why no such increase has been awarded in the pensions payable to disabled officers and men of the last war.
§ The Minister of Pensions (Sir Walter Womersley)
If, as I assume, the hon. Member is referring to increases granted under the Pensions Increase Act, 1944, to oertain classes of civilians in respect of service to the State or local authority, the position is that increases, corresponding broadly to those under the Act, have, in fact, been provided for certain ex-members of the Forces who are receiving pensions for service. This does not, however, afford grounds for revising the rates of disablement pensions of the last war which are based on a cost of living figure actually higher than that obtaining today.
§ Mr. Bartlett
Is not my right hon. Friend aware that the cost of living index is a very misleading index indeed, and does not at all fit the case?
§ Sir W. Womersley
This House agreed to a Royal Warrant that provided an automatic increase with the increase in the cost of living, and the figure supplied by the Ministry of Labour is the only one by which we can go.