§ Sir K. WOOD
asked the Minister of Pensions whether he is giving consideration to the claim of the salaried officers in the Ministry to permanent establishment in Government service?
Representations, in the sense indicated, have been received from the Ministry of Pensions Salaried Officers' Association. The matter is, however, one affecting the whole of the Civil Service, and must be considered in that light. I would refer the hon. Member to the reply given on this subject 2593W by my hon. Friend the Financial Secretary to the Treasury to the hon. Member for Oxford (Mr. Gray) on the 6th instant.
asked the Minister of Pensions what reductions were made in the staff of the Ministry at Sanctuary Buildings during each quarter of the year 1923; and what was the number in each grade?
Established Staff. Male. Female. Quarter ending Quarter ending 31st March, 1923. 30th June, 1923. 30th Sept., 1923. 31st Dec, 1923. 31st March, 1923. 30th June, 1923. 30th Sept., 1923. 31st Dec, 1923. Superior Grades. Increase 7. Nil * Increase 23. * Increase 9. Increase 1. Decrease 1. Decrease 1. Decrease 1. Clerical Grades. Increase 7. Increase 7. Decrease 2. Increase 11. Decrease 1. Increase 1. Increase 1. Increase 2. Typing Staff — — — — Increase 3. Increase 7. Increase 9. Decrease 1. Minor Grades. Increase 4. Nil Nil Nil Established Staff—Net Increase 85.
Temporary Staff. Male. Female. Quarter ending Quarter ending 31st March, 1923. 30th June, 1923. 30th Sept., 1923. 31st Dec, 1923. 31st March, 1923. 30th June, 1923. 30th Sept., 1923. 31st Dec., 1923. Temporary Officials. Decrease 4. Decrease 9. Decrease 3. Increase 5. Decrease 2. Decrease 3. Decrease 1. Decrease 1. Graded Clerks. Decrease 21. Decrease 15. Decrease 5. Increase 13. Decrease 13. Nil Decrease 1. Decrease 3. Typing Staff — — — — Increase 1. Decrease 8. Decrease 13. Increase 2. Minor Grades. Decrease 6. Decrease 3. Decrease 1. Increase 2. Decrease 12. Nil Nil Nil Temporary Staff—Net Decrease 101. Net Decrease during 1923 in total number of Staff= 16. It should be noted that during the latter half of 1923 sections of work formerly performed at Chelsea were transferred with their staffs to Sanctuary Buildings. * The posts filled were authorized under the Regrading Schemes with effect from 1st April, 1922, and in a number of cases the duties had previously been performed by officers of lower rank in receipt of allowances.
§ Mr. B. SMITH
asked the Minister of Pensions whether the Financial Assistant Secretary reports direct to the Minister on matters concerning finance, accounts division, and pension issue office; whether the Director-General of Medical Services2594W
It is not practicable, owing to the very numerous grades involved, to give within reasonable limits the detailed information desired by the hon. and gallant Member, but the figures contained in the following table, which show the net quarterly increases and decreases in the main categories of the staff during 1923, may, perhaps, serve his purpose:
has direct access to the Minister and full control of the medical branch; whether the Director-General of Awards has direct access to the Minister and full control of the awards branch; whether the Inspector-General has direct access to the Minister 2595W and full control of local administration; and whether he proposes to report to the Treasuary pool certain officers of the secretariat for employment in other branches of the Civil Service?
The arrangements for the control and organisation of the Ministry of Pensions follow the lines adopted in other large Departments of State. The heads of the Divisions referred to in my hon. Friend's question are responsible to me through the Permanent Secretary for the proper control of the work of their respective branches, and I personally consult them whenever I conside it necessary to do so. It is not clear to me what officers are referred to in the last part of the question, but my hon. Friend may rest assured that I will miss no opportunity of promoting efficiency and economy in administration.
§ Mr. SMITH
also asked the Minister of Pensions whether there is any Regulation in his Department which prohibits members of the staff communicating with the Press; whether his attention has been called to an alleged interview with Sir George Chrystal, Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Pensions, which appeared in the "Westminster Gazette" on the 8th March, 1924; and whether, if, as alleged, the statements were made by the Permanent Secretary, it is proposed to take disciplinary action in the matter?
There is such a Regulation, and its object is to prevent un authorised communications being made to the Press. The interview to which reference is made in the latter part of the question was given on my behalf and with my express authority.
§ Captain W. BENN
asked the Minister of Pensions whether the premises at 122, George Street, Edinburgh, which are at present occupied by the Pensions Ministry, are to be taken over by the Scottish Board of Health; if so, what alternative accommodation is to be provided in Edinburgh for the Pensions Ministry; and, if not, is it intended to keep these premises in the occupation of the Pensions Ministry?
§ Mr. JOWETT
There is no proposal to move the Ministry of Pensions from 122, George Street at the moment. A move of this nature may, however, take place whenever the Ministry of Pensions staff2596W diminishes to a point which would render it desirable to utilise the premises to better advantage by housing in them another Department.