Auxiliary Police.

Oral Answers to Questions — Ireland. – in the House of Commons on 16th February 1922.

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Colonel NEWMAN:

55.

asked the Chief Secretary whether he is aware that, owing to their being paid by cheque on the Bank of Ireland, demobilised members of the Auxiliary Division, Royal Irish Constabulary, have to submit to a delay of over a week before they can get the money due to them, and of the arbitrary deduction of Income Tax from the amounts due and the difficulty and delay experienced in getting a refund; and what action does he propose to take in the matter?

Photo of Mr Hamar Greenwood Mr Hamar Greenwood , Sunderland

The only practicable method of payment in these cases, since personal payment is impossible, is by cheque, and as payment is made from Dublin the cheques are drawn on the Bank of Ireland. The next and final payment is due not later than 31st March, and cheques will be posted in time to enable clearance to be made before that date. As regards the second part of the question, income Tax is assessed and deducted from the pay of these ex-cadets as in the case of all other public servants. If there is any complaint as to the amount deducted it is promptly investigated, and if a refund were found to be due it would be made at once. I am informed, however, that no such case has arisen.

Colonel NEWMAN:

56.

asked the Chief Secretary whether he is aware that the Inspector-General, Royal Irish Constabulary, was able to promise to demobilised members of the Auxiliary Division preferential treatment in the recruiting for the new police force which is being raised for service in Palestine, but that only single men of the Auxiliary Division are being taken; and, if married men agree to serve in this force without extra pay or emoluments of any sort, will he make representation to the recruiting authorities that preferential treatment shall also be accorded to them?

Photo of Mr Winston Churchill Mr Winston Churchill , Dundee

The main reason for which it is desired to constitute the force primarily from unmarried men is that there is no accommodation for men's wives in Palestine. I may add that, if, as the hon. and gallant Member suggests, separation allowance is not to be paid the men would have difficulty in contributing to the support of their absentee wives and families.

Colonel NEWMAN:

Suppose these men are willing to take the risk? Why should they not be allowed?

Photo of Mr Winston Churchill Mr Winston Churchill , Dundee

I was not aware that any absolute bar had been imposed, but I think it is important that every one joining the force should know there is no accommodation for women and children out there.