§ Paragraph 1 of Part I. of the First Schedule to the Unemployment Insurance (No. 2) Act, 1924, as amended by Section Three of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1925, shall have effect as if the words "after the first week" were omitted.— [Mr. Short.]
§ Brought up, and read the First time.
§ Mr. SHORT
I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
This Clause involves the abolition of the waiting period. Having regard to the concession made by the Minister last week, when I moved another Amendment, I am hopeful that he will extend his generosity to me on this occasion. I can assure him that my motive is well-intentioned. The Bill has had a very good response, and there is much heartburning among Tory back-benchers, for many of them, I feel, realise that, in consequence of the introduction of this Bill, they will fail to enter Parliament after the next General Election. Consequently, I am extending to the right hon. Gentleman an opportunity to retrieve his position. I am inviting him merely to do something generous, and he will then be able to go down to the country and say that, although he introduced this Unemployment Insurance Bill, although he reduced benefits and created a new class of young person, although he gave, them a statutory right of benefit, but surrounded it with barbed wire entanglements and many disqualifications, yet he did accept a new Clause moved by myself which will increase the comfort and well-being of insured contributors.
Under the provisions of the law, when an insured contributor falls out of employment, he has to stand for a whole week before he can secure benefit. There may have been some justification for the provision of a waiting period in the early stages of unemployment insurance legislation. In 1911 the scheme was confined 1039 to some 2,250,000 workers, a small number of trades and industries were affected, and the risks in the trades covered were fairly great. We had little or no experience, and what experience we had was founded on the administration of trade unions. It is true that a small number of trade unions with their limited contributions had a waiting period, and I think it might be said that the waiting period in their case and in the early stages of unemployment insurance was justifiable, but in the case of many trade unions unemployment benefit was paid from the first day of unemployment if the period of unemployment extended over any period or for a definite period in the rules. But the present scheme has materially altered that. We have now something in the nature of a universal employment scheme, and the basis of a waiting period is the assumption that when an insured contributor goes oat of employment he is in a position financially to stand for a week. I challenge that assumption.
We have had six or seven years of continuous unemployment, with never less than 1,000,000 unemployed. Almost every working class home has been afflicted with the consequences of unemployment. Further, the workers have never received, and do not receive to-day, more than a subsistence wage, and wages have been reduced to an alarming extent, the reduction being somewhere in the neighbourhood of £10,000,000 per week. Those in employment have in many cases been, compelled to work short time. The cost of living during this unhappy period has been exceptional, and to-day it is 67 per cent. above the pre-War rate. The chief increase has been in the price of food, which on 1st September rose from 57 per cent. above pre-War to 61 per cent. on 1st October. The price of coal rose from 70 per cent. on 1st September to between 70 per cent. and 75 per cent. on 1st October. Winter is approaching, and there are no signs of any fall, particularly in the price of coal, the tendency, indeed, being towards an increase. The restoration of the gold standard has had an economic effect on the finances of the workers. We are told by Mr. Keynes that the mere restoration of the gold standard reduced every pound of the wages of the workers by 2s. The value of money today is very low as compared with its pre-War value, £1 being worth somewhere in 1040 the neighbourhood of 12s., so that a wage of £2, which, I am told, is the weekly wage of more than 2,000,000 people, is today worth only something in the neighbourhood of 24s.
Is it seriously contended that the working class, who have gone through this unprecedented period, in which such serious blows have been struck at their standard of life, have any surplus, have any bank balances or other reserves to fall back upon when they lose their employments It is a fantastic fallacy to assume that the great mass of the working class have any means whatsoever, because their resources have been drained to the utmost limit. Many of them are in debt—to the grocer, to the tailor, to the doctor. In my constituency many of them are paying off loans which they received from the Poor Law Guardians. I say with a full sense of responsibility that even when they are in employment there is an option upon their week's wages before they can have what they have earned for their own benefit. How do these people exist? Many of them have no means and have to go to the Poor Law Guardians. For proof of that we have only to read the evidence submitted to the Blanesburgh Committee. I will read two short extracts, beginning with Question 876. This is the evidence of the representatives of the Association of Poor Law Unions:Then in paragraph 7 you advocate the abolition of the waiting period, and in paragraph 8 the abolition of the gap period, I think?—The gap has gone. We say there we are very glad it went, and hope it will not come back.877. As regards the waiting week, does not that assume the normal insurable person will have no reserves whatever to fall back upon?—The point is mentioned here because of the number of people who come to the guardians in consequence of having to wait a week. We get an appreciable number in excess of what we used to get when the three days' waiting period was operating and it is rather a long time especially under present conditions for people to exist without assistance.878. Of course, your guardians investigate these cases very thoroughly?—Yes.879. And they have come to the conclusion that a week is too long?—Yes, the guardians, speaking generally, have very adequate staffs for investigation and they go very carefully into the cases that come before them, and they do not grant relief unless they are satisfied that the assistance is absolutely necessary.Here is a further extract from page 100, beginning at Question 919: 1041Does the present method mean that the assistance of the guardians is applied for by men who would manage without for three days but who cannot manage for a week?—I think it means that conclusively.920. Have you any figures to justify that? —I have had some figures supplied to me from the unions tabulated at the end of the memorandum. In Birmingham, within three months, there were 1,280 cases, in Bristol, 654 cases, in Manchester, 638 cases, in West Derby, 797 cases, all cases coming to the guardians in consequence of the waiting period being one week.I would call the attention of the Parliamentary Secretary to that very definite statement of cases coming to the guardians in consequence of the waiting period being one week.921. I take it you do not suggest that these returns give a complete list of all the areas where the burden thrown on the local rates has been particularly heavy?-— No. That statement probably does not represent half the number, but those selected are in most cases unions that have been for a long time in very distressed circumstances, where there has been the largest percentage of persons in receipt of relief, and I have added to those unions two or three big towns. It is not intended to be an exhaustive statement of necessitous areas.I ask the Committee to listen to this next question, remembering that it was in August, 1925, that the right hon. Gentleman increased the waiting period from three to six days.922. It shows that at the end of December, 1925, the numbers of insured persons in receipt of relief were 510,000, giving a proportion per 10,000 of the population of 132. The comparative figures for December, 1924, were 333,000 and the proportion per 10,000 of the population 87. That shows, does it not, that there are 180,000 more insured persons and their dependants on the relief roll than there were 12 months ago?—Yes.Those figures are very alarming, and very illuminating. They prove conclusively, on evidence which cannot be tampered with, evidence which we, at any rate, do not provide, that these great local areas are having thrust upon them as a result of this waiting period a burden which ought to be carried by the Fund itself or by the State. Of course I shall be told that what is asked for in the Amendment will cost too much. That is always the reply. We never have any money for the unemployed or for the poor, or to fight poverty or disease or to remove anxieties from the homes of the people, though we find plenty of money to squander in other directions. To reduce 1042 the waiting period from a week to three days would cost £3,000,000, we are told by the Blanesburgh Committee; to abolish the waiting period altogether would cost £6,000,000. We have to remember, however, that if we abolish the waiting period we should remove all those unemployed workers from the Poor Law, and the saving in Poor Law expenditure must be counted as a set off against the £6,000,000. The reduction of the burden on the local areas would be reflected in a reduction of local rates, and that would be an encouragement to the revival of trade; an impetus would be given to trade and commerce and employment. There would be no need to increase the contributions of either employers or of workpeople in order to provide this £6,000,000—or rather less, if we take into account the saving on Poor Law expenditure.
The right hon. Gentleman has made some savings on this Fund. He has made a saving by reducing the rate of benefit from 18s. to 17s. It is slight, but there is a saving. He has made a saving by the creation of a young persons' class and by reducing their benefits from 10s. to 8s., though I admit that, by an Amendment which he has tabled, those benefits ought to be slightly increased. He has made a saving by reducing the benefits of young boys and girls. There is a pool out of which he could provide the benefits I am advocating by the abolition of the waiting period. I go further than that, and say that the right hon. Gentleman owes this Fund something. Since August, 1925, when he extended the waiting period from three days to a week, he has saved a large sum of money. That saving has been going on for two years. It is difficult for me to estimate the exact amount, but on the assumption that it would cost £6,000,000 to abolish the waiting period we can say he has saved at least £6,000,000. In my opinion, he ought to be ready to return that money to the insured contributors.
On the ground of economy the Chancellor of the Exchequer has reduced the grant to the Unemployment Insurance Fund, an act which was never justified. This waiting period creates a real hardship in the homes of the people, and it may operate more than once in any given 12 months. It transfers financial burdens from the Unemployment Insurance Fund to the Poor Law guardians, 1043 it increases the difficulties of necessitous areas, and it increases the difficulties of local authorities. We ought not to cast these burdens on our depressed local areas. If we have an Insurance Fund we ought to face up to these liabilities and responsibilities. I cannot be accused of wanting to upset the actuarial soundness of the scheme, because there is no actuarial basis, and it has been acknowledged that in a short time Parliament will be confronted with another Bill on similar lines. Seeing that we are now catering for 11,750,000 persons, seeing that we are bringing in all those great trades and industries, we ought to be willing to relieve insured contributors of this hardship and free them from the liability of having either to go to the Poor Law or live for a week without the necessities of life.
§ 6.0 p.m.
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of LABOUR (Mr. Betterton)
The hon. Gentleman who has moved this New Clause asks us, for the first time, I think, in the history of unemployment insurance, to abolish the waiting period altogether. That is a claim which, as far as I know, has not been made hitherto by anybody. It certainly was not made by those who were speaking on behalf of the trade union movement before the Blanesburgh Committee, because what they asked for was definitely a three days' waiting period, instead of six days. This is what the Committee say:We urge, also, that the waiting period shall be reduced to three days as under the Unemployment Insurance (No. 2) Act, 1924, and that where benefit is payable it should date from the first day of unemployment.Therefore, the claim which is now being made by the Mover of this Amendment is quite new. Shortly, the history of this matter has been that, except when the waiting period was three days for a short period in the year 1921, and for a period of about 12 months under the Act introduced by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Preston (Mr. T. Shaw), the period has always been six days, and to ask us to make this change now is making an entirely new claim. The hon. Member for Wednesbury (Mr. Short) referred to some of the evidence given before the Blanesburgh Committee, and 1044 he read out certain questions and answers. The Blanesburgh Committee have considered these points and in their Report they say:We may say at once that, though we have given to these suggestions very full consideration, we have decided to recommend that the present rules remain unchanged.If hon. Members will refer back to paragraph 124, the opinion of the Committee will be found to be conclusive that there should be, at any rate, some waiting period, because they say:Everybody who is unemployed is out of work for one day, fewer for two days, fewer for a week or a month. The number of those who have at a given time been out of work for a prolonged period, as we have already seen in another connection, bears quite a small proportion to the total number of the unemployed. If the unit of employment is the day, as at present, some odd days on which no work is available are quite common, especially in certain trades. These are not proper subject-matter for insurance.Those are the conclusions to which the Committee came, after hearing the evidence given, including the evidence referred to by the hon. Member for Wednesbury. Therefore it is quite clear that to abolish the waiting period altogether would simply mean that you would be including in this scheme the men moving from one job to another, who are not in any sense unemployed persons at all. It is quite true that the cost would be something considerably over £6,000,000, and that in itself is quite prohibitive. I am afraid I should be going beyond the Rules of Order if I attempted to answer the arguments of the hon. Member, but no doubt other points can be argued on the next Amendment. For a number of years we have continually extended what we know as the continuity rule, and we have made it much easier for the period of six days to be fulfilled. Consequently, the waiting period of six days is very different from what it was when the continuity rule was less generous. I will not develop this argument any further at the moment, but I will do so when the next Amendment is moved. This Amendment is inconsistent with any principle of insurance, and we cannot accept a proposal for the abolition of all waiting periods, because that would be tantamount to saying that if a man is going from one 1045 job to another, or is unemployed only for a single day, he should be entitled to benefit under this scheme.
§ Mr. T. SHAW
I read the meaning of the passage quoted by the Parliamentary Secretary quite differently.
§ Mr. BETTERTON
I read the whole of the paragraph. The right hon. Gentleman suggested dating back the payment to the first day, but that is an entirely different point. What the trade unionists recommended in their memorandum, which was placed before the Blanesburgh Committee, was that there should be a waiting period of three days, and if that is served then they would date the benefit back to the first day. Now this Amendment proposes that the waiting period should be abolished altogether, and there is no question of serving three days, or even one day.
§ Mr. JOHN BAKER
I have been wondering how far the Parliamentary Secretary is justified in using an argument in which he does not believe. In reply to the hon. Member for Wednesbury (Mr. Short) he quoted the evidence that was submitted on behalf of the Trade Union Congress before the Blanesburgh Committee. The Parliamentary Secretary got the Minister to accept that, and if he is not now prepared to say, "I agree with it," has he any right to use that as a reason against the abolition of the waiting period? I do not think the Parliamentary Secretary has a right to use what is commonly known as a "try-on." We are now dealing with a very serious problem, the supplying of food to those who have no means of getting any food other than applying for Poor Law relief. We have had evidence given before the Blanesburgh Committee read out by the hon. Member for Wednesbury showing that in a large number of cases men who have lost their employment have had to apply for Poor Law relief within one week.
It is not a question whether the nation ought to expend this money or not. The real question is whether we should expend the money as Poor Law relief or as unemployment pay. Personally, I prefer that this money should be spent as unemployment pay, and I take this view for many reasons. Here we have a contributory scheme, and all citizens who pay taxes contribute towards that 1046 scheme. All the workmen who are insured persons under the scheme also pay towards the cost of the scheme, and I suggest that the men who pay a full quota towards that scheme ought to have some right to say under what conditions the scheme should be worked, and consequently they are asking for the waiting period to be abolished. If the employers of the country only knew their business as well as they think they know it, then they would be backing up the trade unionists and the insured workers in their effort to get unemployment pay started as soon as possible after dispensing with the services of the men in order that those men might be kept in good condition for work in the future. The only effect of driving these men on to Poor Law relief means that they have to live on the lowest standard of subsistence that a Christian country dare permit itself to adopt. The only effect of this course is to undermine the health, and consequently the skill, of the workers, and all this tends to make them inefficient.
There is not a Member sitting on the benches opposite who possesses a motor car who expects it to run without petrol, although the whole lot of hon. Members opposite seem to think that a workman can live without food. Of course he cannot, and if employers take a real interest in industry and efficiency they should treat their workpeople just as they are compelled to treat their own boilers in a factory, because they know if they stop shovelling coal into the furnace they will get no steam to drive the engine. Why not supply food to the human engine? If employers cut short the supply of food, they will have to pay for it in the long run. As a matter of fact, we are falling behind in the race for cheap production, because we are losing our skill, and no effort is being made to retain that skill. No interest is being taken in the workpeople, and that has been demonstrated repeatedly in this House at every stage of this Measure. The Parliamentary Secretary says that by this Amendment we are asking for too much, but we are not asking for any more than the trade unions have asked for. At present trade unions pay from the first day, and that is provided for in their rules. Trade unions also pay for holidays; that is a claim we shall have to put forward, and no doubt it 1047 will surprise the Parliamentary Secretary on some other occasion. This is not a case of workpeople combining together as a trade union and building up a fund for mutual assistance when trade is bad. This is a scheme promoted by the fathers of the people, and it is promoted by the House of Commons on behalf of our race, and is an attempt to maintain it. The Minister takes the view that these men can exist for a week on nothing, and he insists that they must get over that difficulty as well as they can. Trade unionists take the view that these men should be paid for the first day if the man is out of work for a given period.
We do that for reasons which the Minister himself adduced. We are logical. Will the Minister be as logical, and back up his quotation of the evidence of the trade unions by following the example of those trade unions who pay from the first day, or will he remain where he is, keeping these men without income for a week? Their difficulty is not living for one week, because usually in industry you have to work the first week for nothing. That is called lying time. Sometimes it is a shorter period than a week, but very often it is a full week, and if you have been working regularly and lose your job, you can draw that money at the end of the period and have a little bit to tide you over the first week. But it must be remembered that you have then to work a fortnight for nothing before "you are able to get pay for your work, and it is not the first week, but the second and the third week where the difficulty comes in, if you are not going to have any unemployment pay during that period. It is all right while industry is normal, and you are working pretty well full time. Then, if the place closes down and you lose your job, you have your lying time to draw.
Most of our industries nowadays, however, are working short time, and the men have been half-starved while they were working. I wish I could get hon. Gentlemen opposite to go and live, or attempt to live, for a week or a fortnight on the wages that some of these men get for a full week's work. There are millions of men in this country now getting less than £2 a week. Where the head of the family is the only breadwinner in the house, there can be no savings out of 1048 that; they are not getting enough to keep them in physical efficiency. If the head of the family is working short time, such as had been prevalent for years past, he has had to have Poor Law relief as well as the wages that he was earning, so that he might live up to a standard of existence higher than we are providing for in this Bill. There is no room in that for cutting down, there is no room for saving. If we here are really interested in the welfare of the people of this country, we should make better provision than is being made for them in this Bill. I am going to vote for the new Clause.
§ Mr. MONTAGUE
The Parliamentary Secretary used two arguments against this proposed new Clause. The first was that, if it were carried, it would be possible for a man who was merely changing over from one job to another to get the benefit of unemployment insurance; and the hon. Gentleman's other argument against the proposal was that it was going to cost more money than the nation could afford. The first argument suggests to me that the Parliamentary Secretary, like the rest of the members of his party, fails to grasp what is really the position of many hundreds of thousands, and even millions, of the working-class people of this country. What does the hon. Gentleman mean by changing over from one employment to another? What is his idea when he uses a phrase of that character? Is it the usual thing, when a man goes from one job to another, that he must have one day, or two days, or three days out of work? Is is a necessary part of the business that that should occur? People, surely, can change over from one employment to another without any unemployment at all, but the hon. Gentleman seems to think that it is of no consequence at all, that it is merely in the natural course of things, that people changing over from one employment to another should go without wages for a day, or two days, or even three days, as the case may be.
After all, the ordinary working man, or at any rate the casual worker and the lower-paid workers of this country, cannot afford to do without a day's wages. Their money has to be spent in small amounts; it has to be spent day by day very largely; and, if they go without a 1049 day's wages, the result is that they go without a day's food, and their children go without a day's food. The light way in which the Parliamentary Secretary talks about the mere process of changing over from one job to another surely indicates that he and those who support these ideas have not the faintest notion of what really is the ordinary life of the underpaid, the lower-grade workers of the country. If it is a case of an ordinary well-employed man merely changing over from one job to another, and losing a day's work in the process, he is not going to apply for unemployment benefit, any more than he is likely to apply for Poor Law relief. He is not going to hang about for hours outside the Employment Exchange for that purpose, and his case would not affect the matter at all. We plead for the abolition of this waiting period because of the many to whom its abolition is an urgent necessity, and only those to whom it would be an urgent necessity would for one moment think of taking advantage of that Clause in an Unemployment Insurance Bill.
The hon. Gentleman's other argument, that the nation cannot afford to pay £6,000,000, does not answer the point that was put forward by the Mover, to the effect that it is not going to cost the nation £6,000,000. All the way through this question of unemployment insurance, the assumption is that, if you reduce the amount of benefit, you are going to save that amount to the nation. You are not, however, doing anything of the kind. What you are doing is simply putting people on to the Poor Law, putting them on to the rates instead of on the taxes. The point, surely, that ought to appeal to business men opposite, and to people who talk so much about the effect of taxation and rating upon industry, is that a working man who has to go to the Poor Law is a greater burden upon industry itself, through the local rates, than if he received benefit from unemployment insurance.
The nation can afford it. This nation is not a poor nation, it is not an impoverished nation. We are not taxed any more now, proportionately, than we were 100 years ago, if we take the total national income. It is all nonsense to talk about this burden of taxation. I do not advocate, and no one on this side of the Committee advocates, waste of money, or raising taxation merely for the 1050 sake of raising taxation; but we do say that, when it is a question of life, of the feeding of children, of the rearing of a future nation that will be physically, industrially, and morally fit, then for us to talk about £6,000,000 as though the nation could not afford it is altogether beside the mark. This nation can afford it. It is a wealthy nation. We can afford to throw away many millions in much less important and less remunerative ways. We press that this matter shall be dealt with in this Bill by passing this new Clause, to do away with the waiting period, and let those who pay towards unemployment insurance have a real insurance which they can depend upon whenever they are out of work.
Let it also be borne in mind that it is, after all, the workers of the country who pay the whole of it. They pay directly in the first place. If the employer pays a portion, he passes it on to the consumer. When it is thus passed on in the cost of commodities, it means that the nation is paying for it, and the nation is a working-class nation as to 95 per cent. of the population. Therefore, the workers pay the employers' share and the nation's share as well. If they do not pay in the form of direct taxation, they pay in indirect taxation in one way or another. There is no wealth that is not made by labour and by service, and those who give labour and service are those who provide what is necessary to maintain such things as unemployment insurance. The workers pay, and, therefore, we claim that the workers ought to be able to regard unemployment insurance as a real insurance, and that Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries should not come before the House of Commons with light and easy talk about changing from one occupation to another, even if it means only a day's starvation or under-feeding for children who are going to be the citizens of the future.
§ Mr. T. WILLIAMS
Although I have no hope that the Parliamentary Secretary will be moved, I should like to deal one by one with the three objections he submitted against this proposed new Clause, in order to see what substance there may be in them. In the first place, he said that to abolish the waiting period altogether, and provide unemployment benefit immediately a person falls out of work, would be inconsistent with any scheme of insurance. I should 1051 like to hear his justification for that statement, because, whether in the case of National Health Insurance, Workmen's Compensation, fire insurance, motor insurance, or any other kind of insurance, immediate benefits are available provided that the accident, ill-health, or misfortune which comes within an insurance policy can be proved. No person can receive unemployment pay until he has proved that he is out of work through no fault of his own, that he is available for work, fit for work, and anxious to have work should work be provided. It seems to me, therefore, that the argument of inconsistency with insurance is not an argument that will bear the light.
The second argument was that it would cost too much. The assumption of the Parliamentary Secretary that the nation or the Unemployment Insurance Fund cannot provide the £6,000,000 or £7,000,000 which the adoption of this Clause would necessitate, involves assuming one of two things—either that the people who are thrown out of work can manage without income from any other source, or that the persons who are denied benefit must be dependent upon some form of charity or Poor Law relief; and, as has been already pointed out, to saddle upon a district a burden which is essentially a national burden is not meeting the situation in the best possible way. People who are thrown out of work through no fault of their own must be fed, whether they receive unemployment insurance benefit or not, and, because they must be fed, because they must be maintained during the first "week, as well as during the second or the tenth week, and because the Government compel them to be contributors to an insurance scheme, Members on these benches at all events are justified in demanding that, the first day a man or woman is thrown out of work, unemployment benefit should be available for them. Unless that is the case, this insurance scheme fails to insure its members, who are obliged to be members because the Act of Parliament compels them to make weekly contributions.
The third objection submitted by the Parliamentary Secretary was based upon some evidence given before the Committee, and certain observations made by the Committee in their Report.
1052 Here, again, however, the Parliamentary Secretary is obliged to admit that the Report of the Committee indicates that, should a person be out of work for a period, he ought to be paid from the first day so long as his unemployment period covers a few weeks. That, presumably, is taken from the methods employed in the Workmen's Compensation Act, where for the first three days no payment is made unless the injured person is incapacitated for a period of a month, and should he be incapacitated for a month he is paid compensation for the first three days, which would not have been paid if he was incapacitated for a period of less than a month.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
It is perfectly true that that is not the new Clause we are submitting, but we have never agreed with the principle that a person who meets with injuries while following his normal occupation ought to be denied compensation even for the first three days, and this new Clause is absolutely consistent with the claims we have submitted when compensation Bills have been before the House. The hon. Gentleman said that if we were to give benefits from the first day a person became unemployed, moving possibly from one district to another, we should be giving money away in a reckless manner, and it would be totally inconsistent with any sort of sound logical business. Surely he must know that when a person falls out of work he is obliged to go where work is available, and the very act of moving from district to district in search of work ought to be an encouragement to the Government to provide him with unemployment pay for the days that he is out of work instead of encouraging him not to try to find work by robbing him of his first week's benefit under what is called, very wrongly I think, an insurance scheme. A man who is out of work sees an opportunity for a temporary job which may last, perhaps, a fortnight, perhaps ten days or perhaps three weeks, more or less. If he knows it is only going to last for two weeks and he is going to be called upon then to sacrifice another week's benefit, is that not encouraging him to ignore the temporary job? Are you not going to cultivate malingering by your refusal to accept this Clause? The right 1053 hon. Gentleman knows full well that in resisting it he is imposing upon the poorest section of the community—not those who belong to a developing trade, who only fall out of work perhaps once in twelve months. One week in 52 may not make a vast amount of difference, although the average workman has not got enough to keep him for a week. The people who are intermittently employed, working for ten weeks, out of work for three or four, then in work again, the people who get employment four or five different times during one twelve months, are those from whom you are robbing to the extent of the number of times they are thrown out of work. I want to cite a witness who ought to bear some weight with the right hon. Gentleman. Speaking from that Bench two years ago the Prime Minister made this statement. If we have no influence and weight with the Government at least they ought to be willing to accept the words of their own Prime Minister. Dealing with unemployment the right hon. Gentleman said:In considering unemployment there is another factor to be borne in mind. Unemployment is intermittent in most industries..… Last autumn a careful examination was made of a representative sample of the whole unemployment register, and out of a possible maximum of 125 weeks it was found that, of the males, 23 per cent. were employed for from nothing to 29 weeks; nearly 23 per cent. were employed for from 30 weeks to 59 weeks; over 23 per cent. for from 60 to 89 weeks, and over 30 per cent. for from 90 to the full 125 weeks; and except in circumstances where one big trade dominates a whole district, as does happen unfortunately in certain districts of the country, out of every hundred registered as unemployed in any month, more than 60 obtained work for some period in that month."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 29th June, 1925; col. 2072, Vol. 185.]That is the type of man whom the right hon. Gentleman is penalising by refusing to accept this Clause.
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
On a point of Order. Is not this argument bearing on the new Clause on the next page in the name of the hon. Member for West Nottingham (Mr. Hayday)?
§ Mr. T. WILLIAMS
I think the hon. Member is not quite aware which new Clause is being moved. I do not think 1054 he knows the business with which we are dealing at the moment. The figure quoted by the Prime Minister two years ago indicates that we have a fairly large body of employés who seldom, if ever, can regard themselves as having perfectly secure employment. They are intermittently employed, and every time they find themselves out of work after completing one particular job, one week's insurance benefits are taken from them. It may happen four or even 10 times in one year, and the very fact that you deprive men who are supposed to be in an insurance scheme of the benefits that the supposed insurance scheme provides for them discourages them from finding work for fear of these intermittent robberies which you are going to legalise by refusing to accept this Clause. The objection submitted by the Parliamentary Secretary, namely that it was inconsistent to provide benefits that the men are obliged to pay for, will scarcely bear a moment's examination. That the cost is too high again will scarcely bear examination, and the further argument that the Commission indicated, that there should be a waiting period is not consistent with what the Commission actually say, for they definitely declare that if a person is out of work for a number of weeks the waiting period ought to be abolished and payment ought to be made from the first day. [HON. MEMBERS: "Where?"] I have not the Report available, but my right hon. Friend the Member for Preston (Mr. T. Shaw) read out the paragraph and the Parliamentary Secretary had to agree with the statement.
§ Mr. BETTERTON
No, I am sure the hon. Member is under a quite innocent misapprehension. What I read out was a paragraph from the evidence put in by the hon. Member for West Nottingham (Mr. Hayday), the hon. Member for Nelson and Colne (Mr. Greenwood) and Mr. Ernest Bevin on behalf of the Trade Union Congress. It was their evidence, and not the finding of the Committee.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
Possibly there is a difference in the two things, but the result works out the same. The hon. Gentleman quoted one thing and my right hon. Friend quoted another.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
I am not going to be disturbed from the point I have made. This alleged Unemployment Insurance Bill fails to insure people who are obliged to contribute to it, and in no sort of insurance scheme can the Minister or the Parliamentary Secretary show us an identical scheme in operation, whether national health, workmen's compensation, fire, motor or any other insurance, with the one we are debating now, and it is because you compel people to make weekly contributions that we are justified in demanding that if they are thrown out of work through no fault of their own, benefits ought to be available from the very first day.
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
I am afraid the hon. Member did not quite appreciate why I raised the point I did. I was per fectly aware that we were discussing the new Clause which proposes the complete abolition of the waiting period. The hon. Member was illustrating the effect of the continuity rule, and as you, Mr. Hope, ruled that his remarks were not out of order, I should like to follow him on this point. The proposal is to do what, broadly speaking, no trade union does—
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
What no trade union does with regard to its own unemployment insurance scheme. I raised this point on the Second Reading, and a good many people challenged me. I had not with me any documentary evidence in support of my statement, but I have since inquired whether it was the practice of practically all trade unions not to pay for the first six days. It is true some of them, when the first six days are over, pay from the first working day, but it is equally true that most unions have a waiting period, and I think a waiting period is a reasonable thing to have for obvious reasons. According to the estimate of the Blanesburgh Committee, it would cost more than £6,000,000 a year.
§ Mr. T. WILLIAMS
I have heard the hon. Member make the same statement 1056 two or three times. Will he tell us of a trade union who have their rules affecting unemployment where a member of the union is compelled by law to make a weekly contribution?
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
I did not appreciate the point. The hon. Member was accepting my remarks as far as voluntary unemployment insurance schemes are concerned. [HON. MEMBERS: "NO!"] If that was not what he meant, I do not see the point of his interruption now. The only point of his interjection was that a trade union member need not join the out-of-work benefit part of the society. That is optional. That was his defence against my suggestion that after all trade unions have the rule we are now discussing, which it is proposed to abolish.
§ Mr. WALLHEAD
Does the hon. Member know there is no such optional clause with regard to unemployed benefit in a trade union?
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
There is no optional Clause It is all compulsory? The hon. Member has not appreciated the point of the interruption of the hon. Member for Don Valley (Mr. T. Williams). He was trying to get out of a difficulty by saying trade union membership of the out-of-work scheme was not compulsory, and because it was not compulsory they were entitled to have a waiting period, whereas in a compulsory scheme we are not entitled to have it. That is the only point of the interjection as I understand it. Let us look at it. Whether the scheme is compulsory or not, you only have a certain amount of money to play with. Broadly speaking, I suppose the income of the fund is some £50,000,000 a year. The exact amount depends on the proportion of people who are having benefit, and, if there are a lot of persons out of work, the income is somewhat less. It is now in the neighbourhood of £50,000,000 a year. What we are engaged in discussing is what is the best use to which to put this £50,000,000 a year. It is not as if the Minister or anyone else was in a position to produce the £6,000,000 a year, or rather more, that this new Clause would cost.
If this Clause be carried, according to the estimate of the Blanesburgh Committee—and I am now coming back to 1057 the point from which I was taken by the hon. Member for Don Valley—it would cost rather more than £6,000,000 a year; in other words, an eighth of the income of the Fund. This means that, roughly speaking, you are going to reduce your scale of benefits by an eighth in other directions if you are going to finance this proposal. It may be quite right to argue that this might be a wiser expenditure financially than that which is proposed in the Bill, but I ask hon. Members opposite to realise that if they carry this new Clause they must come along with a proposal in the Schedule to the effect that benefit to married man must be cut down by three shillings a week and that benefit to single men must be cut down by two shillings, or something in that proportion.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN.
Might I suggest that if the Government accept this Clause there is an alternative financial proposal. The Government can—they have full power to add to the £50,000,000—borrow £6,000,000 to finance the scheme.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
That is interesting. The proposal to borrow £6,000,000 is not a proposal to borrow £6,000,000 for one year, even if a case could be made out, but to borrow £6,000,000 yearly in perpetuity. I suggest that that is thoroughly bad finance. Most people are convinced that the obligations of the State for the moment are as high as the State can reasonably bear, having regard to the effect of taxation upon industry. I think that it is up to us to do the best we can with the money that is available and not to propose schemes which would merely add to the unemployment problem instead of giving us less unemployment.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
I cannot look up the exact amount of £50,000,000. I mentioned the sum in round figures. I was examining the reports for last year, and in round figures the income is about £50,000,000 a year. It may be £51,500,000 or £49,000,000.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
I apologise. I have been led away by interruptions and have not strayed from my own choice. The hon. Member for Don Valley referred to the hardship that you may inflict upon people 10 times a year, but surely it cannot be inflicted 10 times a year. Under the existing rule the benefit period is six weeks, and six into 52 would not go 10 times. There is rather a difference. As a matter of fact, a man can serve his maximum six times a year, and that is one of the reasons why I put down a new Clause suggesting 10 weeks instead of six weeks. After further consideration, I withdrew the Clause, not because I did not think it a proper one, but because the Minister has put down an Amendment to the Schedule in similar terms. Therefore, a considerable part of the argument used by the hon. Member for Don Valley will be swept away when that is put to the Committee.
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
No, they will not, because this is a proposal to spend £6,000,000 which cannot be found within the four corners of the finance of the scheme, whereas the proposal put forward by me, which the Minister is accepting, involves an expenditure of about £400, on which is part of the emergency margin allowed! in the Actuary's estimate. Therefore, the proposal which I made is a proposal which is financially possible, whereas the proposal we are now considering is quite impossible. I should like to take this opportunity of saying how much I appreciate the action of the Minister in accepting the Amendment which I put down and which, I believe, will remove a great proportion of the difficulty which has arisen.
§ Mr. CONNOLLY
I cannot understand the statement of the hon. Member for Heading (Mr. H. Williams) that trade unions have a waiting period in the same way as the Bill is proposing. The hon. Member made the statement several times, but I think he knows the position quite well so far as the trade unions are concerned. While most of them have a waiting period, if a man is off work for more than three or six days he goes back to the first day. There are certain 1059 exceptions. There are some unions that do not pay even if a man is off for six or 12 days or more, but, speaking broadly and generally, the trade unions pay back to the first day. I had not the privilege of listening to the Parliamentary Secretary when he was making his statement on this New Clause, but I heard £6,250,000 mentioned in the speeches of several hon. Members as the sum that would have to be taken from the Treasury to cover the payment if this New Clause were carried. This £6,250,000 has a familiar sound. I think it is the £6,250,000 that was mentioned when we were in Committee on the 1925 Bill. If it be the £6,250,000 we discussed then, I would like to remind both the Minister and the Parliamentary Secretary that that sum includes two things —not only the waiting period but the right to waiver. The figure given for the waiting period was £4,750,000, and £1,500,000 was set apart for the right to waiver. The re-establishment of the right to waiver—
§ Mr. BETTERTON
I am speaking only from my recollection. My recollection of the sum of £4,300,000 was the difference between a waiting period of six days and a waiting period of three days. I do not myself recollect that there was any Amendment moved similar to the one moved by the hon. Gentleman the Member for Wednesbury (Mr. Short) to abolish the waiting period altogether. That is my recollection; I may be wrong.
§ Mr. CONNOLLY
I may be wrong in stating £4,750,000 as against £4,300,000, but I think that the £6,250,000 mentioned to-night was the sum of £6,250,000 we discussed on the 1925 Bill and also discussed on the Economy (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill. If the Parliamentary Secretary says the difference is between three days and six days, I accept that.
§ Mr. CONNOLLY
I stand corrected. I want, in a few words, to point out to the Minister and to Members on the other side of the Committee the hardship that comes to thousands of men through the saving of that £4,300,000. We speak of a three days' and a six days' waiting period. I want to tell the Committee, as I told the Committee in 1925, that the 1060 waiting period is not really six days but 11 days. This is how it works out. Men are generally paid off on the Saturday. They sign for a full week following, then they commence again on the Monday, signing on on the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. The Employment Exchange week ends on the Wednesday. Three more days go over to the week-end, and the man draws three days' pay. That is to say, if he is off for the fortnight he gets three days' pay, which, in my opinion, makes 11 days' waiting period, and not six days. What happens at the other end? When a man starts work in the engineering shops and in the shipyards on a Wednesday, which is very often the* day on which a man does start, he works Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday of that week and the whole of the following week before he touches any money. That is 10 days at the other end of the scale; 11 days at the beginning and 10 days at the end before he receives any payment. The real hardship is that when a man is starting work or is paid off he cannot go to the guardians for relief. He is refused relief. He is regarded as a man who has immediately finished work, and therefore it is considered that he cannot be in distress. Therefore, very acute hardship is felt by a man and his family when he is paid off.
The same thing occurs when he starts work again. He has 10 waiting days, in many cases, before he gets any pay, and then, perhaps, he does not get anything like a full week on account of shortage of time, wet weather, and shortage of material. I want to put it to the Minister very seriously, that if he cannot accept the new Clause, he should certainly give serious consideration to the hardship in districts such as my own where we had 60 per cent. of unemployment when the average for the whole country was only 18 per cent. Happily this has fallen now, but these periods of starting and finishing are nightmares to some of our people. The hon. Member for Beading very cleverly pointed out that this cannot occur 10 times in a year. I want to say to him that if he experienced it once in a year it would be enough for him. I sincerely commend the suggestion to the Minister that if he cannot accept the new Clause he might give serious consideration to the Amendment which follows.
§ Miss WILKINSON
I should like to back up the plea that has been made by the previous speakers that if the Minister cannot go so far as to abolish the waiting period altogether he should restore the position that existed before the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1925. I think and everybody who had experience of the three days' waiting period felt that, although it was a definite hardship, the hardship was nothing like so acute as has existed since the three days' waiting period has been extended to one week. I feel that of all the apparently small economies obtained by the Act of 1925 there is no economy that has, as a matter of fact, produced so much hardship as the extension of the waiting period to one week. If it were only one week, it would be bad enough, but in most cases it is not one week but very nearly two weeks by the time the man actually gets his pay. I have had the matter brought to my notice very pointedly by a case in my own constituency where a man whose wife had fainted through lack of food came to see me. The man had been out of work for some time and had seven children dependent upon him, five of his own and two children of his dead brother. After several months' work he had one or two weeks of four days. Then, when he was out of work, he applied for his benefit, and he had to wait a fortnight before he got anything at all. That man had 22s. to last him for nearly three weeks. Before he actually received his benefit he had that extraordinarily small sum, plus a few loaves of bread that he had been able to get from the guardians. As the family were in such want for bread, it, of course, had to be given to the children. The man had not had any food for 36 hours. The obvious answer to that is, that the guardians exist to give relief and that this man should have applied to the guardians. But when he did apply to the guardians, they did not relieve him to the extent that was necessary for himself and the children.
In these extremely depressed areas the guardians are literally at their wits end. They have not anything like the money required to relieve all the necessitous cases that come before them. They tend naturally to take the view that, if there is a waiting period fixed by the Ministry of Labour, a man must get through somehow. If they do not take this view, it means that the rates go bounding up 1062 again, and then, there is further pressure on these badly depressed industries. I suggest that, had the Minister or his colleagues considered that things were going to remain so continuously bad, they would not have extended the period as they did in 1925, but things in these particular areas of which I have been speaking are not getting better. They are steadily getting worse, and what that means is that the physique and stamina of the people is not able to face the deprivation of this week's benefit. If you have men who are normally in full work, even if the wages are low, it is possible that perhaps one week might not do them so much harm, but here you have, not one, but hundreds of cases of men who are normally just on the very last ounce of physical strength.
I want to ask the Minister if he will consider this point. In these areas, where the only work available is very heavy, if you have men so under-nourished, it diminishes their chances of getting a job and throws more on to the public funds. It is not an economy but an extravagance to get men down to such a low standard of nourishment that they are not able to accept work or to do the work even when they get it. That is the position in many cases where you have areas of either deep depression or where casual labour is the main labour open to the men. It is an extravagance in another way, because, if the men know that they have to wait, not two or three days but nearly a fortnight, it means that they lose so much that there is a sort of discouragement to look for work. We have had many Debates in this House about what is or is not genuinely seeking work. The Blanesburgh Report has pointed out that often the only way to decide it is to decide what is in the mind of the man.
Will the Minister really blame a man in the position I have quoted? Taking the man whose case I have given, with himself, his wife and his dependants, he would receive from the Unemployment Fund 37s., or in two weeks he would receive 74s. If he got a job of four days he would receive, in fact, 22s. for the four days. Therefore the taking of that job would mean a loss to him in the fortnight of 52s. When you have a man like that, with a wife and seven children dependent on him, is he doing his duty as a father to those children if he accepts 1063 work for these four days when it means starving the children or seeing his wife fainting? You have to deal with the primitive instincts in human nature. When a man is down to this low stage, these primitive instincts are all that is left to him. and, if he knows that his acceptance of that job means privation for his wife and family, nobody can blame him if he is not there when the job arrives. This man took the job and suffered in that way. Therefore, I appeal to the Minister, if he cannot abolish the waiting period, to give very serious consideration to this Amendment which stands in my name and those of other hon. Members, and see whether it is not possible to go back to the 1925 period, and at least try it for a year so as to get us over this extraordinarily bad period. Perhaps when things are better you may be able to go back to this work again, but during this period when things are so terribly bad I want to suggest to the Minister that this £3,000,000, which is going to be saved by the waiting period being extended to a week instead of three days, is not really being saved to the public, because if it does not come from this fund it will come from other quarters, and really it is not being saved in health and stamina, but is definitely going to make it more and more difficult for men to get work. I do want to appeal to the Minister with all the earnestness of which I am capable to see if he cannot accept this Amendment.
§ Mr. WALLHEAD
I want to reinforce the plea which has been made by the hon. Member for East Middlesbrough (Miss Wilkinson) that—as the Minister has refused the Clause moved originally by the hon. Member for Wednesbury (Mr. Short)—he should accept the Amendment. Personally, I do not think that, reverting to one or two of the arguments used, the Government have really a very strong case in quoting the trade union practice as a precedent for maintaining the waiting period. After all, as I understand trade union practice, it was never assumed that the trade unions had initiated a system of insurance. It was some slight protection that they offered to their members, but they never considered it as a system of insurance, and, of course, what they were able to do was always contingent 1064 on their extremely limited income. Trade unions in the past have rendered tremendous service to the State in the work which they have done in the maintenance of unemployed men, and, while that experience may have been valuable to the Government, I do not think it is quite fair that the Government should initiate the system of what they call a statutory right to unemployment pay and say that it is maintaining the system which some of the trade unions were driven to because of sheer limitation of. funds.
I should like to point out that there is this question as to the ability of a man. to maintain himself in the initial period. Of course, if a man were earning the wages that some hon. Gentlemen opposite fondly imagine he earns, it would be a. simple proposition that he should maintain himself for the first week of unemployment, but where you have a very low average wage it is another matter. We have been told on pretty good authority recently that there are about 11,000,000 or 12,000,000 of the working population with an average wage of about 50s.a week. On the basis of to-day's prices, that is just about equal to 25s. or 26s. before the War. At any rate, it is not much of a wage on which to maintain anything for the first week out of employment. There has been in recent years, since 1920, in our industrial life not only a large amount of absolute unemployment but an exceedingly large amount of short-time worked by men in different occupations. There are trades in this country where the-period of short time has been so prolonged as to extend to years. In the mining industry, for instance, miners would be penalised under this arrangement. You can have a man working for three days and then off for three days, and then working for a week or four days and off for another three days, and so on, and he never earns a decent week's wages and cannot go for benefit and can get no Poor Law relief either. As a matter of fact, the condition of many men like that is infinitely worse than that of the man who is permanently out of work. This would apply to men in the cotton trade, the engineering trade, and many other occupations. I want to argue that this question of providing £3,000,000 is not the bugbear that the hon. Member for Reading (Mr. H. Williams) would have us assume it to be. As a matter of 1065 fact, I understand that the finance of this Bill is based on the assumption or the finding of the Departmental Committee which was set up for the purpose of arriving at what was likely to be the average amount of unemployment over a cycle. That average was assumed to be 6 per cent. As a matter of fact, the Report refers to the figure of 6 per cent. asbeing the rate employed in the estimates made for the recent Departmental Committee on the unemployment insurance scheme.Further on, in dealing with this matter, the actuary says:I estimate that if over a cycle of years the rate of unemployment experienced should be 6 percent., an average surplus of about £5,400,000 a year will arise. In these circumstances the rates of contribution may, by Section 4 (2) of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1923, be less than the 'maximum' rates; I estimate that the surplus of £5,400,000 would be sufficient to admit of reductions from the maximum of 1d. per week in both the employers' and the employés contributions.If that be correct, them the argument of the Government that it is going to cost £6,000,000 on the present rate of contributions is entirely wrong.
§ Mr. BETTERTON
Is the hon. Gentleman making his case on the* supposition that there is no waiting period or that there is one of three days?
§ Mr. WALLHEAD
I am supposing that there is no waiting period. It is assumed that the abolition of the three days' waiting period would cost £3,000,000.
§ Mr. WALLHEAD
Yes, £3,000,000. What I am quoting is the estimated surplus provided on the hypothesis on which the Bill is based, that the average unemployment for a cycle of years would be 6 per cent. That is the Actuary's estimate, and on the present contributions there would be this £5,400,000 per annum. If that be true, then the £3,000,000 is provided for over a cycle of years, and it seems to me that here, in the Blanesburgh Report and in the
§ Actuary's own submission, is the strongest argument for giving this benefit to the men who pay and of making this scheme into a real insurance fund and so give benefits to the men, almost as soon as they need them, the results of their own thrift and patience.
§ Surely the Government could see their way to do that. If one assumes that even all that is not correct and that the 6 per cent. is slightly wrong and is not quite the average—even then, taking the £3,000,000 over a cycle of years, there would still be a surplus of £2,500,000. Surely, with that surplus of £5,400,000, and granting the concession that we ask for, there is a margin big enough and safe enough to secure the Fund against any demands upon it? That is assuming the Government's estimates are correct. In face of this Report of the Actuary and his own submission of figures, as an answer to the Government's contention, I do sincerely trust that the Minister will see his way to grant this concession and to maintain the Insurance Fund in the condition in which it now stands, and which the trade unions themselves asked for in their evidence. I do not think that is an unreasonable thing to ask. The argument that the country cannot afford it cannot be sustained in view of the fact that the Actuary himself admits that the Fund can sustain it without making any demands upon the country. If there should be a few thousands one way or the other or even half a million, surely we are not going to argue that this country is so poor and so far down in its financial basis that it has to refuse this small concession to men who are compelled to pay, from whom large sums of money are raised and from whom deductions go on week after week, and who need this assistance and are in vital need of it at a very acute period of their lives. I sincerely trust that we shall do the decent thing by granting the concession contained in the Amendment.
§ Question put, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 120; Noes, 256.1069
|Division No. 433.]||AYES.||[7.17 p.m.|
|Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West)||Baker, J. (Wolverhampton, Bilston)||Bromfield, William|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Baker, Walter||Brown, James (Ayr and Bute)|
|Alexander, A. V. (Sheffield, Hillsbro')||Barker, G. (Monmouth, Abertillery)||Buchanan, G.|
|Ammon, Charles George||Barnes, A.||Charleton, H. C.|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Broad, F. A.||Clowes, S.|
|Cluse, W S.||Hirst, G. H.||Slesser, Sir Henry H.|
|Compton, Joseph||Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhlthe)|
|Connolly, M.||Hutchison, Sir Robert (Montrose)||Smith, Rennie (Penistone)|
|Cove. W. G.||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Snell, Harry|
|Cowan, D. M. (Scottish Universities)||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Stamford, T. W.|
|Davies, Ellis (Denbigh, Denbigh)||Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Silvertown)||Stephen, Campbell|
|Day, Colonel Harry||Kennedy, T.||Strauss, E. A.|
|Dennison, R.||Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M.||Sullivan, Joseph|
|Dunnico. H.||Kirkwood, D.||Sutton, J. E.|
|Edge, Sir William||Lansbury, George||Thomas, Rt. Hon. James H. (Derby)|
|Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty)||Lawrence, Susan||Thomson, Trevelyan (Middlesbro. W.)|
|Edwards, J. Hugh (Accrington)||Lindley, F. W.||Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)|
|Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer.)||Livingstone, A. M.||Thurtle, Ernest|
|Fenby, T. D.||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Aberavon)||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Forrest, W.||MacLaren, Andrew||Townend, A. E.|
|Gardner, J. P.||Maclean, Neil (Glasgow, Govan)||Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. C. P.|
|Garro-Jones, Captain G. M.||March, S.||Viant, S. P.|
|Gillett, George M.||Montague, Frederick||Wallhead, Richard C.|
|Gosling, Harry||Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.)||Walsh, Rt. Hon. Stephen|
|Graham, D. M. (Lanark, Hamilton)||Naylor, T. E.||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)|
|Graham, Rt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)||Oliver, George Harold||Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)|
|Greenall, T.||Palin, John Henry||Webb, Rt. Hon. Sidney|
|Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne)||Paling, W.||Welsh, J. C.|
|Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.||Westwood, J.|
|Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Potts, John S.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Groves. T.||Ritson, J.||Williams, C. P. (Denbigh, Wrexham)|
|Grundy, T. W.||Roberts, Rt. Hon. F. O.(W. Bromwich)||Williams, David (Swansea, E.)|
|Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton)||Robinson, W. C. (Yorks, W. R., Elland)||Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)|
|Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Rose, Frank H.||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Shetland)||Scurr, John||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Hardie, George D.||Sexton, James||Windsor. Walter|
|Harris, Percy A||Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)||Wright, W.|
|Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon||Shepherd, Arthur Lewis||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Hayday, Arthur||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)|
|Hayes, John Henry||Sinclair. Major Sir A. (Caithness)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Henderson, T. (Glasgow)||Sitch, Charles H.||Mr. Allen Parkinson and Mr. Whiteley.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel||Cecil, Rt. Hon. Lord H. (Ox. Univ.)||Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.|
|Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James T.||Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton||Galbraith, J. F. W.|
|Ainsworth, Major Charles||Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Ladywood)||Ganzoni, Sir John|
|Albery, Irving James||Charteris, Brigadier-General J.||Gates, Percy|
|Alexander, E. E. (Leyton)||Christie, J. A.||Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John|
|Alexander, Sir Wm. (Glasgow, Cent'l)||Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer||Goff, Sir Park|
|Applin, Colonel R. V. K.||Churchman, Sir Arthur C.||Gower, Sir Robert|
|Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid W||Clarry, Reginald George||Grace, John|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Clayton, G. C.||Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.)|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Cobb, Sir Cyril||Grant, Sir J. A.|
|Balniel, Lord||Cochrane, Commander Hon. A. D.||Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.|
|Banks, Reginald Mitchell||Cohen, Major J. Brunel||Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)|
|Bareclay-Harvey, C. M.||Conway, Sir W. Martin||Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John|
|Barnston, Major Sir Harry||Cooper, A. Duff||Grotrian, H. Brent|
|Beckett, Sir Gervase (Leeds, N.)||Cope, Major William||Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.|
|Bellairs, Commander Carlyon W||Courtauld, Major J. S.||Gunston, Captain D. W.|
|Bennett, A. J.||Crookshank, Col. C. de W. (Berwick)||Hacking, Captain Douglas H.|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry Cavendish||Crookshank, Cpt. H.(Lindsey, Gainsbro)||Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)|
|Berry, Sir George||Cunliffe, Sir Herbert||Hall, Admiral Sir R. (Eastbourne)|
|Betterton, Henry B.||Curzon, Captain Viscount||Hammersley, S. S.|
|Boothby, R. J. G.||Davidson, J.(Hertf'd. Hemel Hempst'd)||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Davidson, Major-General Sir John H.||Harland, A.|
|Bowyer, Captain G. E. w.||Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil)||Harmsworth, Hon. E. C. (Kent)|
|Bridgeman, Rt. Hon. William Clive||Davies, Dr. Vernon||Harrison, G. J. C.|
|Briggs, J. Harold||Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, S.)||Hartington, Marquess of|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Dawson, Sir Philip||Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)|
|Brittain, Sir Harry||Dean, Arthur Wellesley||Haslam, Henry C.|
|Brocklebank, C. E. R.||Drewe, C.||Hawke, John Anthony|
|Brooke, Brigadier-General C. R. I.||Edmondson, Major A. J.||Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M.|
|Broun-Lindsay, Major H.||Elliot, Major Walter E.||Henderson, Capt. R.R. (Oxf'd, Henley)|
|Brown. Brig.-Gen. H. C. (Berks, Newb'y)||Ellis, R. G.||Henderson, Lt.-Col. Sir V. L. (Bootle)|
|Buchan, John||Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Weston-s.-M.)||Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.|
|Buckingham, Sir H.||Erskine, James Malcolm Monteith||Hills, Major John Waller|
|Bull, Rt. Hon. Sir William James||Evans, Captain A. (Cardiff, South)||Hogg, Rt. Hon. Sir D.(St. Marylebone)|
|Burman, J. B.||Everard, W. Lindsay||Hohler, Sir Gerald Fitzroy|
|Burton, Colonel H. W.||Fairfax, Captain J. G.||Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard|
|Butt, Sir Alfred||Falle, Sir Bertram G.||Holt, Captain H. P.|
|Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Fanshawe, Captain G. D.||Hopkins, J. W. W.|
|Caine, Gordon Hall||Fielden, E. B.||Hopkinson, Sir A. (Eng. Universities)|
|Campbell, E. T.||Ford, Sir P. J.||Hopkinson, A. (Lancaster, Mosslsy)|
|Cautley, Sir Henry S.||Foster, Sir Harry S.||Howard-Bury, Colonel C. K.|
|Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City)||Foxcroft, Captain C. T.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)|
|Cayzer, Maj. Sir Herbt. R. (Prtsmth. s.)||Fraser, Captain Ian||Hume, Sir G. H.|
|Cazalet, Captain Victor A.||Frece, Sir Walter de||Huntingfield, Lord|
|Hurd, Percy A.||Moore, Sir Newton J.||Simms, Dr. John M. (Co. Down)|
|Hurst, Gerald B.||Moreing, Captain A. H.||Skelton, A. N.|
|Iliffe, Sir Edward M.||Nail, Colonel Sir Joseph||Smith, R. W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)|
|Iveagh, Countess of||Nelson, Sir Frank||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Jackson, Sir H. (Wandsworth, Cen'l)||Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)||Spender-Clay, Colonel H.|
|James, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. Cuthbert||Nicholson, O. (Westminster)||Sprot, Sir Alexander|
|Jephcott, A. R.||Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G. (Ptrsf'ld.)||Stanley, Lieut.-Colonel Rt. Hon. G.F.|
|Jones, G. W. H. (Stoke Newington)||Nield, Rt. Hon. Sir Herbert||Storry-Deans, R.|
|Joynson-Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William||Nuttall, Ellis||Stott, Lieut.-Colonel W. H.|
|Kennedy, A. R. (Preston)||Oakley, T.||Streatfeild, Captain S. R.|
|Kindersley,. Major Guy M.||O'Connor, T. J. (Bedford, Luton)||Stuart, Crichton-, Lord C.|
|King, Commodore Henry Douglas||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Perkins, Colonel E. K.||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Murray Fraser|
|Lamb, J. Q.||Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)||Sugden, Sir Wilfrid|
|Lister, Cunliffe, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip||Pilcher, G.||Sykes, Major-Gen. Sir Frederick H.|
|Little, Dr. E. Graham||Power, Sir John Cecil||Templeton, W. P.|
|Locker-Lampson, G. (Wood Green)||Pownall, Sir Assheton||Thompson, Luke (Sunderland)|
|Loder, J. de V.||Preston, William||Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell-|
|Looker, Herbert William||Price, Major C. W. M.||Tinne, J. A.|
|Lowe, Sir Francis William||Radford, E. A.||Titchfield, Major the Marquess of|
|Luce, Major-Gen. Sir Richard Harman||Raine, Sir Walter||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Lynn, Sir R. J.||Ramsden, E.||Vaughan-Morgan, Col. K. P.|
|MacAndrew, Major Charles Glen||Rawson, Sir Cooper||Waddington, R.|
|Macdonald, Capt. P. D. (I. of W.)||Reid, D. D. (County Down)||Ward, Lt.-Col. A. L. (Kingston-on-Hull)|
|Macdonald, R. (Glasgow, Cathcart)||Rhys, Hon. C. A. U.||Warner, Brigadier General W. W.|
|McDonnell, Colonel Hon. Angus||Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch'ts'y)||Watson, Rt. Hon. W. (Carlisle)|
|McLean, Major A.||Roberts, E. H. G. (Flint)||Wells, S. R.|
|Macmillan, Captain H.||Roberts, Sir Samuel (Hereford)||Williams, A. M. (Cornwall. Northern)|
|Macnaghten, Hon. Sir Malcolm||Robinson, Sir T. (Lanes., Stretford)||Williams, Herbert G. (Reading)|
|Macquisten, F. A.||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)||Wilson, R. R. (Stafford, Lichfield)|
|MacRobert, Alexander M.||Rye, F. G.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George|
|Maitland, Sir Arthur D. Steel-||Salmon, Major I.||Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl|
|Makins, Brigadier-General E.||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)||Withers, John James|
|Malone, Major P. B.||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)||Wolmer, Viscount|
|Margesson, Captain D.||Sandeman, N. Stewart||Womersley, W. J.|
|Marriott, Sir J. A. R.||Sanderson, Sir Frank||Wood, E. (Chest'r, Stalyb'ge & Hyde)|
|Mason, Lieut.-Col. Glyn K.||Sassoon, Sir Philip Albert Gustave D.||Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W.)|
|Meller, R. J.||Savery, S. S.||Woodcock, Colonel H. C.|
|Milne, J. S. Wardlaw||Scott, Rt. Hon. Sir Leslie||Yerburgh, Major Robert D. T.|
|Mitchell, S. (Lanark, Lanark)||Shaw, R. G. (Yorks, W.R., Sowerby)|
|Mitchell, W. Foot (Saffron Walden)||Shaw, Lt.-Col. A. D. Mel. (Renfrew, W.)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Mitchell, Sir W. Lane (Streatham)||Sheffield, Sir Berkeley||Mr. F. C. Thomson and Mr. Penny.|
|Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.||Shepperson, E. W.|
Question, "That the Clause be read a Second time," put, and agreed to.