HC Deb 05 August 1925 vol 187 cc1344-5
30. Colonel Sir ARTHUR H0LBR00K

asked the Minister of Labour whether his attention has been called to a statement, made by an official of the Ministry of Labour at the Tower Bridge Police Court last week, that a man making £1,000 a year from a business under management could draw unemployment pay if he were a motor driver out of a job; whether he is aware that out-of-work miners in South Wales, while running small farms and keeping live stock, have at the same time been drawing unemployment benefit; and will he take steps for an immediate amendment of the regulations to protect the Unemployment Fund from such abuses?


asked the Minister of Labour whether his attention has been drawn to a case at the Tower Bridge Police Court on Wednesday last the 29th ultimo, in which a man was prosecuted and sent to prison for false pretences, in that he had been drawing the dole, with allowances for his wife and children, since March last while conducting, at the same time, with his wife, a profitable grocery business, the man having claimed the dole on the ground that he was unable to obtain work as a motor driver, which was his registered occupation when he left the Army in 1921; and whether, in view of the evidence of the official from the Labour Ministry to the effect that the man was entitled to continue to draw the dole if not engaged on his registered occupation, such steps as are necessary may be taken to prevent a continuance of this practice in the future?


Certain condensed Press reports of the replies given by an official to the magistrate in the case referred to have given rise to misapprehension. The rule on the subject, as laid down in Section 7 (2) (a) of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1920, is that ordinarily a person following any occupation from which he derives any remuneration or profit is disqualified for benefit; the only exception is that a person may without being so disqualified continue to carry on a subsidiary employment, outside his ordinary working hours, bringing in not more than a pound a week or 3s. 4d. a day.

Lieut.-Colonel WATTS-MORGAN

Has the Minister been able to find a reply to that part of Question 30 which refers to miners in South Wales keeping farms and drawing unemployment relief 1


No, Sir.

Lieut.-Colonel WATTS-MORGAN

It is not true.


It is very publicly stated in the newspapers. [HON. MEMBERS: "The Daily Mail!"]


I would ask hon. Members not to ask questions too lightly on statements which appear in the newspapers.