HL Deb 19 March 2001 vol 623 cc130-1WA
Lord Dubs

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What plans they have for the Armed Forces Pension Scheme and the Joint Ministry of Defence/Department of Social Security Compensation Review. [HL255]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean

We are pleased to announce that the emerging findings of these reviews are being published today for public consultation. We appreciate that both reviews are taking longer than originally intended, but they have raised complicated issues and we are determined that we should find the right package of benefits appropriate for our Armed Forces in modern society.

The review teams have carried out detailed analysis of the current arrangements and the options for modernisation. They have set out options in each area, working closely with the services personnel staff. The next stage in the review process is to seek the views of individual service personnel, ex-service and widows organisations and the general public. This will include wide circulation of material describing the proposed changes, both in hard copy and on a range of web sites. We will also be going out to interested organisations to explain our proposals, answer any questions and seek views. Because of the complexity of the proposals we have allowed over four months for consultation. After this time we will publish a summary of the responses and consider how to take the package forward in the light of them.

Copies of the consultation documents will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses and will also be available on the MoD website. The Joint Compensation Review consultation document will also be available on the DSS War Pensions Agency website.