Irish Indemnity Act.

Oral Answers to Questions — Agriculture. – in the House of Commons on 12th July 1923.

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Photo of Mr John Muir Mr John Muir , Glasgow Maryhill

55.

asked the Home Secretary if he can now say if the tribunal set up under the Restoration of Order Ireland (Indemnity) Act, 1923, has yet started work; and, if so, how many claims for compensation have come before it?

Photo of Sir Douglas Hogg Sir Douglas Hogg , St Marylebone

I have been asked to reply. No meeting of the tribunal has yet been held. Notice has been given of a preliminary meeting on the 20th of this month, at which it is intended to consider and announce the procedure of the tribunal. It follows that no claims for compensation have yet come before it.

Photo of Mr John Muir Mr John Muir , Glasgow Maryhill

Is the period which has passed from the passing of the Act till the preliminary meeting of the Committee to count as time during which claims are eligible for presentation?

Photo of Mr Arthur Greenwood Mr Arthur Greenwood , Nelson and Colne

Is the right hon. and learned Gentleman aware that certain of these men are now out of work and on the poor-rates?

Photo of Sir Douglas Hogg Sir Douglas Hogg , St Marylebone

I have no information concerning the last supplementary question. To the first supplementary question, the answer is that the time for lodging claims depends upon the passing of the Act. I think the period was three months after the passing of the Act. The question of when the tribunal meets to consider claims, of course, does not affect that time at all. Once the claim is lodged the applicant is protected, even if the claim is not heard until much later.

Photo of Mr Arthur Greenwood Mr Arthur Greenwood , Nelson and Colne

Does the right hon. Gentleman not realise that these men are not protected if out of work, and that the weeks are passing by before they can lodge their claims?

Photo of Sir Douglas Hogg Sir Douglas Hogg , St Marylebone

I do not realise anything of the kind. The question of whether or not the claim is barred depends on whether or not the claim is lodged within three months after the passing of the Act. Any claim that is lodged now, or may have been lodged at any time since the passing of the Act, is a claim which will be considered, so long as it is lodged within three months of the passing of the Act.

Photo of Mr Samuel March Mr Samuel March , Poplar South Poplar

Is any provision made to support these people while they are waiting for the tribunal to deal with their cases?

Photo of Sir Douglas Hogg Sir Douglas Hogg , St Marylebone

No; I do not know of any provision to support men waiting to have their cases considered.

Photo of Mr Samuel March Mr Samuel March , Poplar South Poplar

They have to go to the guardians, I suppose?

Photo of Mr John Muir Mr John Muir , Glasgow Maryhill

Is the right hon. Gentleman not aware that many of these persons who were deported and may be considering making applications have been waiting until they knew that the Committee was actually set up, which was only a matter of a fortnight ago, and that it depends on the first sitting to fix the procedure when the claims may be heard?

Photo of Sir Douglas Hogg Sir Douglas Hogg , St Marylebone

I am not aware of that, but the Committee has been set up already and its constitution has been announced. If they are waiting until the preliminary meeting, they will have ample time before the three months period elapses, as from the beginning of June.