HC Deb 18 March 1925 vol 181 cc2248-9
36. Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

asked the Minister of Labour if he is aware of the grievance existing among dock labourers at the Regulations which lay down that a man not signing as unemployed on the day after the holidays loses benefit for all the days of the holidays, even although seeking work during the holidays and unable to obtain it, and that if he works half a day after the holidays he loses all the days' benefit of the holidays, and there is little inducement, therefore, for him to seek work on that day; and whether he has now considered this matter with a view to improvement?


I have not been able to trace any rule which would have the effect suggested in the question.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there is no such thing as holidays where men are casually employed and that on Good Friday the Employment Exchanges are close. The men present themselves for employment, but if they do not sign twice on the day they present themselves there is no record kept, and that means that, Saturday being the only recognised holiday, it does not count, and Monday is a bank holiday. Under the circumstances will he make some alteration?


I think perhaps what the hon Member is referring to—I could not hear everything quite clearly—is the Regulation that applies to men on part time and dock labourers, which is that, where you have a public holiday, they will get unemployment benefit for the period of the holiday provided they are unemployed for 12 days either immediately preceding or after, or partly preceding and partly after, which meets the general case as regards any unfairness as regards holidays as regards dockers and short timers. If there is any special question in addition to that, if the hon. Member, or the hon. Member who put the question, will communicate with me, I will look into that as well.