HC Deb 27 March 1912 vol 36 cc561-2W

asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he is aware of the feeling in Ireland adverse to old age pensioners being deprived of their pensions by the fact of undergoing treatment in union hospitals, which in most rural portions of Ireland are the only available institutions, while on the other hand recognising the reasonableness of the ratepayers being paid 4s. weekly for their maintenance, leaving 1s. of the pension available for their personal use, subject to power on the guardians' part to take less than 4s. where, for special reasons, more than 1s. weekly is reasonably needed for a pensioner's private purposes; whether he is aware that the present administration of the Old Age Pensions Act in this respect, is causing dissatisfaction; whether he will explain why the burden of maintaining in illness a person who when in health is entitled to the old age pension falls on the ratepayers and the payment of the pension is terminated; and whether, having regard also to the hardship arising in many cases under the new Act by old age pensioners, when deprived of their pensions through admission to union hospitals, being unable after leaving hospital to obtain the pension again till a new claim has been made and investigated and a meeting of the subcommittee held to sanction the same, often involving several weeks' delay, and seeing that the disqualification alleged to arise in such cases has never been decided by any Court of Law to legally exist, he will take steps to meet the wishes felt in Ireland with regard to the question of union hospital treatment and old age pensions?


I would refer the hon. Member to the reply given to the question asked on this subject by the hon. Member for North Londonderry on the 6th March.


asked the President of the Local Government Board if he will state why the claim of Joseph Anderson, of 2, Kew Villas, Bemerton, Salisbury, to an old age pension has on appeal to the Board been disallowed, seeing that he is over seventy-two years of age and, having resided continuously in the United Kingdom since January, 1901, and was absent therefrom for a continuous period of less than three months in 1900, complies with the provisions of Section 3 (2) (e) of the Old Age Pensions Act, 1911?


I understand that the claimant has resided in the United Kingdom since January, 1901, but I have no evidence to show that he was resident here in 1900. Consequently the provision to which the hon. Member refers would not appear to apply in this case.