§ 39. Mr. J. HUDSON (for Mr. ROBIN-SON)
asked the Postmaster-General if he is aware that at certain offices the Department does not stamp the health and pension insurance cards of auxiliary postmen working short time; what is the reason for the practice; and what steps the men are expected to take to conserve the benefits of health and pension insurance?
§ Sir W. MITCHELL-THOMSON
The employment of an auxiliary postman who works less than 18 hours a week as such is not employment within the meaning of the National Health Insurance Act, 1924. All auxiliary postmen who work as much as 18 hours a week or more for the Post Office, that is to say, over 96 per cent, of the total number, are fully insured in respect of their Post Office employment. As for the last part of the question, some of the remaining 4 per cent. may be insured in respect of other employment, and where this is not the case I understand that it is usually open to them, if they have hitherto been insured, to become voluntary contributors.
§ Mr. R. MORRISON
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that this practice makes it hard for the ex-service man who is employed as an auxiliary postman, inasmuch as he is unable to get unemployment relief, or relief from the guardians, and he is not allowed to work enough hours to get a living wage; and will he look into the question again?