HC Deb 16 February 1961 vol 634 cc1732-3
3. Mr. Montgomery

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proposals he has for paying compensation to any person who suffers injury by going to the aid of a police officer.

Mr. R. A. Butler

The payment of compensation ex gratia to persons who suffer injury or loss while assisting the police is a matter for police authorities in the first instance. If my hon. Friend has any evidence that the present practice is not working satisfactorily, I shall be glad to consider it.

Mr. Montgomery

I thank the right hon. Gentleman for that reply. Does he not feel that it is iniquitous that anybody who goes to the assistance of a police officer and suffers injury as a result gets no compensation? As the Government are considering matters of this kind at present, will he reconsider his decision, because I believe that my suggestion would be of great value to the police and a great help in preserving law and order?

Mr. Butler

I have a two-fold answer for my hon. Friend. First, there is a later Question about the general question of compensation for victims of crime. Secondly, the Home Office has frequently paid police grant on expenditure incurred by police authorities in paying compensation to persons who have suffered injury. That is why I wanted my hon. Friend to bring instances to my attention in case we could apply this practice.