HC Deb 02 November 1916 vol 86 cc1848-50W

asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office whether he will state the grounds upon which separation allowance is refused to Hubert O'Connor, father of No. 933, Corporal H. O'Connor, 12th Battalion King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, in view of the fact that prior to enlistment he was accustomed to receive from his son from 15s. to £l per week?


This claim was very carefully considered by the Appeals Committee presided over by my right hon. Friend the Member for North Sv. Pancras, with the result that the claimant failed to establish dependence prior to enlistment.


asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office, whether a series of resolutions passed by the Corporation of the City of Glasgow has been submitted to the Army Council urging that the scale of separation allowances should be revised in view of the prevailing high prices, that separation allowances be granted in respect of apprentices who had nearly finished their apprenticeship and students who had nearly completed their education and would already have been contributing to their parents' support, that separation allowance should not be suspended while the person in respect of whom it is payable is temporarily under treatment in a rate-aided institution for infectious disease, and that the full separation allowance, including allotment, should continue to be paid after the death of the soldier for the period of the War at least; and whether it is proposed to take any action?


Yes, Sir. My right hon. Friend has already undertaken to consider the reassembling of the Select Committee which dealt with these matters, and no doubt, if reassembled, it will review the question mentioned in the resolutions.


asked the Secretary for War (1) whether he will have the case of Private R. Smith, No. 10035, late 15th Lancashire Fusiliers, inquired into; whether he is aware that he has a wife and nine children, and was discharged on 12th October, 1916, having been wounded on 1st July; that his wife's separation allowance has been stopped, while he has received no allowance or pension of any kind; and (2) whether he will have the case of Corporal J. W. Burrows, late 15th Lancashire Fusiliers, No. 20629, inquired into; whether he is aware that he had bad attacks of bronchitis owing to the damp when in camp during training; whether he was discharged as medically unfit; and whether some pension or allowance will be made to him?


I am making inquiries into these two cases, and will let my hon. Friend know in due course the result.


asked the Secretary of State for War whether his attention has been called to the case of Mrs. M'Shane, the widowed mother of Corporal H. M'Shane, No. 4 Mountain Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery, now in Egypt, who has had eleven years' service, also of a daughter, whose husband is now in the Army in France, also of Private Edward M'Shane, of the Grenadier Guards, who died of wounds on 23rd September, 1916, also of William M'Shane, now in the Army Service Corps in Egypt, also of J. M'Shane, who has been wounded and discharged from the King's Liverpool Regiment; whether he is aware that this widow's only income is 8d. a day from the son in India, and that the War Office allege they are precluded from making any allowance or allotment, owing to the fact that prior to the War Mrs. M'Shane was not a widow and not then dependent upon her sons; and whether he proposes to take any action in the matter?


I cannot trace W. M'Shane from the particulars given, but there does not appear to be any claim in respect of the other sons. Under the recommendation of the Select Committee, separation allowance is only given to dependants on account of dependence which, existed before the War or enlistment. The case appears to be one for the consideration of the Statutory Committee.


asked the Secretary to the Local Government Board what arrangements exist for ensuring that subcommittees appointed by the war pensions committees adequately carry out their work; and when are such sub-committees expected to issue reports on their activities?


It rests with the local committee appointing sub-committees to satisfy themselves that the subcommittees are adequately carrying out the powers and duties delegated to them by the local committee, who are authorised by Section 2 (9) of the Act of 1915 to make such delegation subject to any restrictions or conditions they may think fit. They can require such reports from them and at such times as they may deem desirable. I may add that the Inspectors of the Statutory Committee are always ready to afford any advice or assistance in their power to local committees and their sub-committees in the discharge of their functions.