HC Deb 17 February 1948 vol 447 cc966-7
8. Mr. Norman Bower

asked the Minister of Pensions if he is aware that Mr. George Oliver, of 5, Greenway, Pinner Hill, who has been in receipt of a disability pension of £1 10s. 8d. per week since 1945 has only been able to do a few weeks' work during the last two years and has had to expend his entire savings of £300 in order to maintain himself and his family; and if, in view of the foregoing circumstances, a 100 per cent. disability pension, which was awarded to him on 1st January, 1948, will be made retrospective to the date on which he was originally awarded a pension.

Mr. Buchanan

I am extremely sorry there has been delay in dealing with Mr. Oliver's case. A substantial sum in respect of arrears of treatment allowances has now been paid to him, and his pension assessment will be reviewed immediately he leaves hospital.

9. Miss Jennie Lee

asked the Minister of Pensions if he is aware that the sole income of Mr. Arthur Richards, of Wolverhampton, a seriously disabled ex-airman, is £2 11s. 6d. a week plus a wife's allowance of 16s.; and if he will take action in the matter.

Mr. Buchanan

I have seen a recent newspaper account of an interview with the pensioner's wife in which these amounts were quoted, but my hon. Friend will be glad to learn that in fact Mr. Richards has since May, 1947, been receiving from my Department by way of disablement pension and wife's allowance, constant attendance allowance and unemployability supplement, a total of £6 7s. 8d. a week.

Miss Lee

I am grateful to the Minister for his reply, from which I notice that the sum of the income is almost double. Will my right hon. Friend do anything in his power to prevent these Press reports which cause a great deal of distress, and which I do not think the journalists would write deliberately if the House impressed upon them that such reports are a treacherous disservice to ex-Service men?

Mr. Buchanan

We get a good deal of this. My attention was called to this matter. I thought the sum terribly insufficient, and went into the matter. It is a bit hard—not on me, because I am used to knocks, and have given them—but on officials who are doing a decent job and doing it kindly. I would say that my officials, when they are doing well, as in this case, are deserving of praise from all of us, and deserve to be upheld. Of course, we are all of us prepared to criticise them if and when they do anything wrong.

Back to
Forward to