HC Deb 01 May 1928 vol 216 cc1667-86

I beg to move, That an humble Address be presented to His Majesty, praying that the Regulations, dated 3rd April, 1928, entitled the Unemployment Insurance (Courts of Referees) Regulations, 1928, be annulled. I do not know whether or not I owe an apology to the hon. Gentleman in charge of this matter, as this is the third day on which this Prayer has appeared on the Paper. On the first day we thought it would not be reached; on the second day, for reasons over which we had no control, the House adjourned unexpectedly; and on this, the third day, the matter is being dealt with. I am raising the question of these Regulations for several reasons. First of all, I think it of the utmost importance, at the beginning of the operation of this Act, that the insured persons of the country should know exactly where they stand. In the past the Courts of Referees Regulations were not very important, as the number of persons who appeared before the Courts was comparatively small. They were in three categories: persons who had left work voluntarily, persons dismissed for some misconduct, and per- sons who were "not genuinely seeking work" but had a claim to standard benefit. With the passing of the new Act the Referees' Courts have taken on an entirely different function namely, to deal at some time or other with practically every insured person who is claiming benefit. At least 3,000,000 to 4,000,000 persons will have to appear before the referees' courts annually. The insured persons ought to know not only the black and white of the Regulations, but the spirit and intention of the Regulations, and what is behind the Minister's mind with the making of the Regulations. The first criticism I make is that the Regulations hitherto have not been known at all by many people.

I question if many Members of Parliament, even those who take an active part—and I am riot blaming any hon. Member; we all, in our many duties, are called on to specialise—in Unemployment Insurance matters know the court of referees Regulations at all. I question if the persons who are called on from time to time to appear before them, and the trade union officials and others who are called on to act in a judicial capacity, really know these Regulations at all well. Therefore, I think it should have been the duty of the Minister at the start to see that those Regulations, when they assumed a significance they had never assumed before, as possibly a million persons per annum more than were formerly dealt with are now deal with, were circulated and made public. Therefore, I think the Minister ought to have had those Regulations published earlier, and published in a book, booklet or pamphlet, or whatever he cares to call it. That pamphlet should have been issued explaining the Act, and these Regulations ought to have been an integral part of that pamphlet. It is no use explaining what kind of benefit a person is to get unless he or she knows when he or she is going to be disqualified the rights under which he or she can appeal. Therefore, my first criticism is that the Minister made no attempt publicly to issue these Regulations. Indeed, very few, if any, of the Members took any notice of them when they had been laid in this House for the 20 statutory sitting days. I think the Minister is entitled to be criticised for not having long before this caused these Regulations to be published in the pamphlet he issued. I hope that in any subsequent pamphlet or publication issued by his Department he will see that these Regulations are incorporated for the use of those persons who are working under the Act.

The second criticism I have to pass is that I do not know how far the appointments of the chairmen are made by the Minister. I know that under the main Act the appointment of the chairmen of those Courts of Referees are vested in his hands. Although the Act does not specify that a lawyer shall be the chairman, I know that in practice this job is practically provided for legal gentleman. Why is it that this task of being the chairmen of Courts of Referees should be confined to legal people?

I have no special disregard for legal people, but I think that a knowledge of industry ought to be indispensable to a chairman. I think that even a man who has been an employer of labour, or a man who may have been at some time an employé of a trade union, or a man who had some knowledge of the working of industry and of handling men, would be in most cases much better fitted for the task than a legal gentleman would be. Take the City of Glasgow, where I know the Courts of Referees fairly well, because, when this House is not sitting, part of my job, which I take on voluntarily—

Notice taken that 40 Members were not present; House counted; and 40 Members being present


The point I was making was that I do not know why a legal gentleman should be chosen as chairman. I hope not to pass any personal criticism on those who in the past have undertaken this task, but in my own district we have two chairmen of the Court of Referees, and a third gentleman who acts as deputy-chairman, and none of them, if I may say so, has had any experience in industry at all; and I understand, although I am not quite sure, that the same gentlemen will be acting under the new Act. None of them, with all due respect, has any firsthand knowledge of industry at all. We think that these people ought to be chosen with some regard to their knowledge of industrial conditions. I want to ask the Parlia- mentary Secretary why it is that throughout the country, practically without exception, legal gentlemen are chosen as chairmen of the courts of referees. We do not say that men should be debarred because they are lawyers, but there is a taint of patronage about the whole business, because, so far as I can gather, at any rate in my own city, the members of the courts of referees and the chairmen are very often men with political sympathies opposed to Labour, and largely sympathetic with the Conservative party. I do not think it is good that chairmen should be vested with immense powers of this kind, and that there should very often be a feeling in the mind of the insured person that it is a matter of patronage, and is given for political services and not for capacity for the job.

To return to the question of publication, I think that, in addition to publishing a booklet in future, the Parliamentary Secretary might consider whether these regulations could not be made public throughout the Employment Exchanges. It might be possible for him to have a leaflet printed, in order that the clerks might distribute it to the applicants for benefit; or at least this could be done, that every clerk in the Exchange, and every official of a trade union, could be supplied gratis with copies of the regulations for their use, in order that applicants might be well posted on the matter.

The Regulation says the members of a panel shall hold office for three years from the date of their appointment or for any other term as the Minister may direct. What is the meaning of "any other term"? Does it mean that the Minister, while laying down three years, can make it five, six or seven, or can make it shorter? It says in Sub-section (3): Provided that the Minister may at any time terminate the appointment of any member of the panel. It may be the Minister has cause to terminate their service, but anyone who undertakes duties voluntarily is entitled to know the reason his services have been terminated. I see that an applicant is entitled to be summoned to the Committee and is entitled to reasonable notice. There is no definition of what reasonable notice means, and we think the Minister ought to insert in the Regulations a definite time. He cannot object to every applicant having at least two or three days' notice.

We also ask that in a case where a trade union official or other person appears on behalf of an applicant the applicant ought to have the right of being summoned. I wrote to the Minister about the case of a person who had been disqualified for benefit by the Court of Referees. The Minister always answers with a formal letter, something like this: "Dear Sir, We have made inquiry into the case you wrote to us about, on such and such a date. We find the applicant was disqualified from benefit by the Court of Referees." He proceeds, at the end of his letter, to point out that the Minister has no control over the Court of Referees, and that their decisions are final unless the applicant is in a trade union, when he can appeal to the Umpire. While that may be true, it is not the whole of the truth. In a recent case a person was given benefit and along came the employer and said the Court of Referees was wrong, and then from some mysterious source the Court was re-summoned and its decision overturned. If the Minister says the decision of the Court is final and can only be altered in the case of an insured person who is in a trade union, that ought to apply rigidly all through. The Minister cannot argue that for one case if he is going to allow an employer afterwards to give separate evidence and have the case overturned.

What he now does is to argue to the Member of Parliament that the decision of the Court of Referees is final, but if the employer comes along and gives information after the Court of Referees has decided he is prepared to take the evidence of the employer and to say that the decision is not final and can be altered. Has a Member of Parliament or a trades union official, or someone acting for the insured person the same right as an employer to have a case reheard? I have raised these points, and I will now leave the matter to my colleague, who has a number of other points to bring to the notice of the House. I hope that the Minister in replying to these points will at least give us some sort of satisfaction on some of these points.


I beg to second the Motion.

I am sorry that we have to keep the House waiting late in order to discuss these Regulations. Perhaps hon. Members will not feel it so badly when they remember that the Regulations are to govern the conduct of the Court of Referees which will have to deal with hundreds and thousands of cases of people claiming unemployment insurance benefit. An alteration has been made that in future cases are not to be heard by the Rota Committees or by the Local Employment Committee, but that all cases in which there is a dispute with regard to benefit will be heard by a Court of Referees. When they think of the burden of unemployment and the great hardships that the unemployed have had to endure in connection with their applications for benefit, Members of this House who represent the unemployed should not worry at having to spare the time to consider these Regulations.

Coming to the Regulations themselves, I would like the Minister to give some information with regard to the Advisory Committees. I would like to know how many of these Advisory Committees are in existence. I would like him also, if he can do so, to inform me of the constitution of the Advisory Committee as far as the Employment Exchange in my own area is concerned. One of the Regulations has to do with the appointment of members of the Courts of Referees, and power is given to the Minister to dismiss any member of the Court of Referees, without warning. I can well understand that the Minister may require such powers, but if he has that power there ought to be some check. It is the old problem of the Executive and the Legislature. The Courts of Referees exercise judicial functions and a member of such a court may take an independent line in the hearing of cases and may come into conflict with the officials of the Ministry of Labour. If that member carries on his duties faithfully and gets into an uncomfortable position and his services are to be dispensed with, there ought to be some check. I do not know exactly what check might be imposed, but perhaps the Minister might see his way to amend the Regulation so that there could be an appeal by any member of the Court of Referees whose services have been dispensed with—an appeal, say, to the Umpire, who is an official quite independent of the Minister of Labour.

Possibly hon. Members who have interested themselves in the administration of unemployment insurance may have had experience similar to mine. They may have met members of their Rota Committees who have expressed the opinion that because their decisions were so often favourable to the applicants for benefit, they found that they were not being called upon very often to serve on the Rota Committee. That is not something that is purely hypothetical. I have met members of Rota Committees, the representatives of the working classes in Glasgow, on several occasions, and always at the meetings voices have been raised expressing the opinion that members of Rota Committees who showed themselves too independent in connection with their decisions found that their services were practically never required. Therefore, this is a matter of some importance, and as these Regulations in future are to affect a larger number of persons, the Minister ought to give some safeguard to members of the Rota Committees, who are giving their services. Only the chairman is a paid official; the other members are unpaid, and it is only fair that the chairman or any member of the committee should have the right of appeal to some authority if he feels that the Minister has acted unfairly in his treatment of him.

One regulation allows the Court to proceed when there is not the regulation number of members present. The regulation provides that in these circumstances the Court can only proceed if the applicant is willing. I would ask the House to remember that very often applicants for benefit are overawed by a sense of the dignity of the Court when they come before it. When they are asked if they will go on in the absence of the full number they do not know what to say. I am not going to complain of that so much now, although there may be ground for asking the Minister not to give any Court this power. But what happens is this. The Court proceeds with the case and the number of members of the Court present is an even number. The voting is equal and in such circumstances the regulations gives the chairman a second or casting vote. That regulation should be amended, so that if there is equal voting the case should be carried over to a full meeting of the Court. I think the Minister himself would agree that this would be a fairly reasonable amendment of these regulations.

If the Minister reads through the series of qualifications which are necessary for membership of the Court of Referees, he will find that they might be much more clearly stated. I am not sure that one of them would not debar anyone from membership of the Court who was not himself qualified to receive unemployment benefit. That would mean that the lawyer chairman, the trade union official, and the employer would all be disqualified. I may be wrong in my reading of this passage but certainly the qualifications are clumsily stated and regulations of this kind ought to be as clear as crystal. A case may be referred to the Court of Referees and the Court may decide that further inquiry is necessary. They may appoint one or two of their number to inquire and report. I have no objection to that, but I ask that when members of the Court of Referees make such an inquiry, a copy of their report should be sent to the applicant. He should have it 24 hours before he appears in Court. He should know what is the report and should be able to deal with it when he is putting his case before the Court. It is said in one of the regulations that reasonable notice ought to be given to the applicant of his being required to attend the Court. We suggest that a definite minimum time should be stated. While the rota committees were in operation people sometimes got notice in the morning to appear in the afternoon. That is not fair. A man may go out in the forenoon looking for work and may have to go far afield. This notice may come during his absence and cause a great deal of worry and trouble. We say that a definite minimum time should be made, say 48 hours or three days, so as to give the applicant time in order that he will know when he is to go before the committee, and will be able to give notice if he desires to ask a friend to assist him in presenting his case. The Minister may say that he will give instructions that that will be the case, but it would be better if it were put in a Regulation.

I am convinced that much trouble and a feeling of resentment is created in connection with unemployment insurance by the uncertainty with regard to matters connected with the administration. A matter of importance is that when the Court of Referees are considering their decision, the representative of the Ministry of Labour should be asked to withdraw if the applicant is asked to withdraw. The representative of the Ministry should not be in the room when the Court are considering their decision. I hope the Minister will be able to provide for that in the Regulations. I should like also that the applicant should have the decision of the Court intimated to him personally instead of being told that he would hear about it. One other point is that the applicant is entitled to know who the members of the Court are. There may be difficulties in connection with this, but I hope the Minister will be able to meet us, for the applicants should know who are the people who are sitting in judgment on them. As I understand it, the Minister is looking for the new Act to work the 30 statutory payments rule and that it will operate in such a way that after the transition period is passed, the 30 payments will in the main be sufficient to deal with most of the cases. With the operation of the rule, there will be only a comparatively small number of cases in which the genuineness of the claim to benefit will be called in question. If that be so, it seems to me that there will not be any very great difficulty in intimating who are the members of the Court who have come to the decision.

I would ask the Minister also to look at Regulation 4 (i, c), "Procedure of the Court of Referees." He will find there a reference to Section 11 (2, a) of the Act, and I would like him to explain what is the meaning of that paragraph. It does not seem to me at all clear, and I would be grateful to have an explanation of it. I hope these Regulations will be put in the Employment Exchanges and will be available for any member of the public, for any unemployed person to read for himself, so that he may know what exactly his position is. I would also suggest to the Minister that it would be a good thing if they could be put into the public libraries. After all, you want to make this Unemployment Insurance Act as efficient as possible, and you want to deal fairly and generously with the people who have to bear the burden of unemployment, and I think the points that we have brought forward to-night are worthy of the consideration of the House.


The hon. Member for Gorbals (Mr. Buchanan), in opening his remarks, said he was not quite sure whether an apology was not due to me in consequence of the fact that this Prayer had been on the Order Paper for several different days but had not been raised. So far as I am concerned, no apology whatever is needed, because I know quite well that on the previous occasions it was not in any way the fault of the hon. Member that the Prayer was not then raised. He said that his object in raising this discussion was that the fullest publicity should be given to these Regulations, because, as he rightly points out, the importance of the Courts of Referees is greatly enhanced by reason of the operation of the new Act, which came into effect about 10 days ago. With that object I entirely sympathise, because I think the greater the publicity that is given to these Regulations the better. Not only are claimants entitled to know what are the Regulations which govern the procedure of the courts, but we desire, as the hon. Members desire, that claimants should in all cases have the greatest possible confidence in the court that has to decide their claims. Therefore, I will consider, with my advisers, the best way of giving the greatest possible publicity to the Regulations themselves, and I will consider whether—in fact, I see no reason at all against it—the Regulations should not be contained in any new edition of the pamphlet to which the hon. Member referred, when such an edition becomes necessary. Apart from that, I will consider whether, either by posting them up in the Exchanges or by taking any other action in my power, I can meet the object which he has in view.

I think it would be convenient if I dealt with the various points raised in the reverse order to that in which they were put, dealing first with the last point raised by the hon. Member for Camlachie (Mr. Stephen). He asked what was the meaning of Regulation 4 (1, c) and he suggested that the Regulation needs some explanation, because, as no doubt he has noticed, it is a new Regulation. The reason it is put in is that under the new Act these cases come up for review after 13 weeks. We anticipate that in the vast majority of these cases benefit will be allowed, and it would be a waste of unnecessary work if we set out definitely that the claimants were to be given the right to be present in court when the cases are considered. I say quite definitely that under this Regulation the claimant will always have notice to attend or to be represented in the ordinary way before an adverse recommendation is made, so that he will not be prejudiced in any way if he is not present at the review of his case. Then the hon. Member asked that a claimant should be told the names of the members of the court. I think that request is a perfectly reasonable one, and I am prepared to say now that in any case where a claimant desires to know the names of the persons sitting in judgment in the court he will be told, and there will be no difficulty therefore on that point.

The next question was as to the right to be present. That, I think, is covered by the Regulation 4 (1, b), which lays down that the applicant shall be entitled to be present as well as the insurance officer when the Court is discussing its decision; either the applicant shall be entitled to be present as well as the insurance officer, or neither. That is really covered by the Regulation as it stands, because the Court has power to order all persons not being members of the Court to withdraw. The provision is, therefore, quite general and is not specially applicable either to one side or the other.


If the hon. Gentleman will allow me, this is the point: The power is general to the Committee. They may ask the applicant to withdraw or they may ask all to withdraw. What I am anxious is that if the applicant is asked to withdraw, they should compel the withdrawal of the Ministry's representative as well. The practice hitherto has been that the Ministry's representative sits on and the applicant is asked to withdraw. The Ministry's representative sits on and discusses the case with the Committee, and, as I am informed by members of the Court, influences the decision of the Court. It is for the Court of Referees to give the decision. I am anxious to get a decision that if the applicant has to go out the Ministry's representative must leave also. Both should be out or both should be in.


I should have thought the Regulation as it stands would have been sufficient. I am told there are the strictest instructions to the effect that the representative of the Ministry is in no circumstances to attempt to influence the Court. In any case it rests with the Court itself to decide and the Court has the power to order all persons to withdraw while they are discussing their decision.


I tan say that the representative of the Ministry stays in the room in the majority of cases when the applicant goes out, and uses his influence.


Clearly the Court has the power to order all persons to withdraw, and I have no doubt if it thought there was any danger of any improper use being made to influence it, that is the course it would take.


Might not the Court naturally hesitate to order an official to withdraw?


I do not think the Court would hesitate for an instant to ask anybody to withdraw. Another point raised was as to the notice of the hearing, both hon. Members asking that some definite notice should be given. The Regulations require that reasonable notice should be given and hitherto the practice has been that 24 hours' notice should be given. If we lay down any fixed time, whether it be 48 hours or three days, the result may be to delay a decision, which would not, of course, be in the interest of the applicant. I am most anxious to meet hon. Members in all parts of the House, and I will say at once that if in any place the majority of applicants—so far as we can gauge the opinion of the majority—would like longer notice, I will see that that is given, that is, in any place where it seems to be the general desire. If in Glasgow or anywhere it is the general wish of applicants to have three days' notice, I will do my best to ensure that that three days' notice is given; but my reason for not laying it down as a general rule is that I do not want to do anything which might unduly prolong the proceedings before a case could be decided.

12.0 m.

The next point was as to the report which was made under the Regulations, and it is suggested that the contents of the Report should be communicated to the applicant. I think that proposal is a fair one, and I am prepared to accept it.


Is it not a fact that the Minister has power to terminate the engagement of a member of the Court?


It is a fact that this power has been vested in successive Ministers of Labour since the year 1920, but the number of occasions on which they have exercised that power is quite infinitesimal. The whole object of this legislation is to secure the independence of the Court. If it is suggested that the action of the Minister is calculated or intended to secure the subservience of the Court, then the Minister would not be fit for his office. The present arrangement has worked perfectly well.

The next question put to me had reference to the right of the applicant to be heard by a full Court. That right is very carefully safeguarded in the Regulations, which provide that any applicant is entitled to be heard by a full Court unless he consents to be heard by a Court which is incomplete. If the Court is incomplete, it follows that there must be a casting vote; otherwise, there would be no finality.


Give the casting vote to the applicant.


Under the Regulations any dissenting member may record his dissent and give his reasons for it. That is an additonal safeguard for the reason that the finding of the Court of Referees is not a final finding, but a recommendation to the Insurance Officer which may or may not be taken to the Umpire. I was asked about the Advisory Committees appointed under the Act of 1909. They are now really the local Employment Committees. There are 330 local Employment Committees and 309 Juvenile Committees. Bridgetown has its own Committee, while Camlachie is covered by a Committee in the neighbourhood.

The hon. Member for Gorbals asked also why lawyers should usually be appointed as Chairmen, and he said, "Why not appoint either an employer or some representative of an employed person?" The answer clearly is that under Sub-section (2) of Section (1) the other two members of the Committee are representatives of the employers and of the insured persons, and the arrangements would not work so well if the Chairman also was taken from one of these two classes. From long experience in the working of the Courts of Referees, we have found that lawyers, with their experience of construing what are very complicated Acts of Parliament, have done their work well, and are most suited for the office of Chairman.


Will the Parliamentary Secretary undertake to issue an instruction that when an applicant is asked to withdraw the representative of the Ministry must also withdraw while the Court is taking a decision?


No. That is a matter for the Court of Referees themselves. The Court has power, and I am not prepared to interfere with it, of issuing any specific instructions.


Suppose the applicant is asked to withdraw and the Minister's representative is not. Will not that sort of thing go on for ever unless you alter it? A decision ought to be reached now to make both stop in the Court or both walk out.


The power of the Court is the same in regard to the one side or the other.


The Courts do not exercise it.


I am not prepared to interfere with the way in which business is conducted or to give instructions.


Where there is an incomplete Court and there is a tie for and against any decision, the question ought to be put to the applicant whether he would accept the decision of the casting vote, and if he objects the matter ought to be put back to another Court. In the way it is left now everything depends on the Chairman of the Court. If the voting is one-and-one, it is the Chairman's decision that counts, and generally that will be against the applicant.


I really do not think that suggestion is quite reasonable, because the claimant has the alternative of deciding beforehand whether he would like his case decided by the incomplete Court or the complete Court.


As I read the Clause, it is this: For the purpose of discussing this recommendation, the Court may order all persons not being members of the Court to withdraw from the sitting of the Court. I suggest that that does not give them power to do anything except what it says, namely, to order all parties to withdraw from the Court.


I want to raise again the point about the appointment of the chairman. I am not satisfied that a lawyer is the best type of person to decide this very important matter of protecting an unemployed man. With reference to the clearïng of the Court, I think if the Minister is prepared to make no other concession, he should make it clear that the Ministry of Labour representative is not a member of the Court. In my experience, he assumes the position that he is not there in a similar position to the applicant or Counsel to the Ministry of Labour, but as a clerk to the Court and as a member of the Court. It ought to be made clear that this person, acting as it were as Counsel for the Prosecution, is not a member of the Court, or a clerk of the Court, but a member of the general public. If the Ministry of Labour representative is allowed to remain, so should the claimant. As to the composition of the new Court, we have been discussing in Scottish Grand Committee a Bill for the reorganisation of offices in Scotland, and the Secretary of State for Scotland and the Lord Advocate have convinced me that in public posts the appointment of men by patronage is a very vicious one. I gather from the replies given by the Minister in the House that it is proposed to appoint this Chairman of Referees purely on the Minister's own judgment. The Parliamentary Secretary knows that I should be prepared to trust his judgment if I believed that he personally was going to see the persons who were going to be appointed, though I do not believe it is good to give a general power of that description into the hands of a Minister; but I know that the Parliamentary Secretary, not to mention the Minister, will not see the persons appointed to these posts. On whose advice is the appointment of these suitable lawyers to be made? Is it to be that of the local Conservative Association?

My postbag with reference to this matter has been rather interesting, and I want some device other than that of patronage before I am going to believe that these chairmen are neutral persons who are going to hold the balance evenly between the claimant and the Ministry, and, as will frequently be the case, between worker and employer. I would not trust, generally, the lawyer to be the detached person capable of taking a judicial point of view. I do not think his training develops that in him. I think the legal training tends to develop the partisan element rather than the judicial capacity, and, if I were looking for suitable people for appointments of this description, I would find men who had sat as Judges in legal Courts, who had been magistrates in our great cities, who had had experience in weighing evidence, who had got into the habit of detaching themselves from personal prejudices; and, having settled upon that type as a suitable type, I would then have some method of testing their capacity, and would appoint them as a result of a definite test and not as a result of favouritism. I want the hon. Gentleman to tell the House how he proposes to proceed in the making of these appointments, how these men are going to be recruited, and who is going to advise the Minister as to the appointments; and I would urge him to cut out the lawyer qualification. I believe that the lawyers have persuaded the Government in this and in other connections that every political party must always have a certain number of public appointments that they can throw into the greedy maw of the legal profession. The legal profession has persuaded the Tory party to that point of view, but I think that it is not a good one, and that it should be combated. I want to combat it here to-night, and if I cannot get satisfaction, I personally, whatever my hon. Friends may do, an strongly inclined to go into the Lobby against these Regulations.


I am sure the hon. Member will not believe that there is any truth in the suggestion that these appointments are just handed out to anyone whom the Minister desires to favour. The universal practice, since these Acts were passed—and I have myself followed it closely during the last few days—is, in England, to ask the County Court Judges in the districts

where these Courts are set up for names of persons whom they think have just the qualifications which the hon. Member would desire, and the County Court Judge sends a list of names of gentlemen who, he thinks, have those particular qualities, giving in each case the reasons why he thinks so and the qualifications of each of the gentlemen in question; and one or other of the names suggested by him is, I think I may say, always accepted by the Minister. That is in the case of England. In Scotland, the Scottish Office obtain similar information from a gentleman who, I think, is the equivalent of a County Court Judge in England, namely the sheriff substitute. I can, therefore, at once dismiss any suspicion which any hon. Member may have that these important posts are handed out by way of patronage. On the contrary, we do our utmost, by the means I have indicated, to secure the very best men for the posts.

Question put.

The House divided: Ayes, 27; Noes, 93.

Division No. 98.] AYES. [12.22 a.m.
Barr, J. John, William (Rhondda, West) Tinker, John Joseph
Brown, James (Ayr and Bute) Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd) Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)
Crawfurd, H. E. Kelly, W. T. Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)
Dalton, Hugh Kirkwood, D. Wellock, Wilfred
Dunnico, H. Lawson, John James Westwood, J.
Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton) Maxton, James Wheatley, Rt. Hon. J.
Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil) Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan) Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)
Hardie, George D. Potts, John S.
Hint, W. (Bradford, South) Shiels, Dr. Drummond TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath) Stephen, Campbell Mr. Thomas Henderson and Mr. Buchanan.
Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel Fanshawe, Captain G. D. Merriman, Sir F. Boyd
Alexander, Sir Wm. (Glasgow, Cent'l) Ford, Sir P. J. Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.
Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S. Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E. Morrison-Bell, Sir Arthur Clive
Apsley, Lord Gadie, Lieut.-Col. Anthony Neville, Sir Reginald J.
Barclay-Harvey, C. M. Ganzoni, Sir John. Penny, Frederick George
Betterton, Henry B. Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)
Birchall, Major J. Dearman Goff, Sir Park Philipson, Mabel
Bowyer, Capt. G. E. W. Grattan-Doyle, Sir N. Ramadan, E.
Boyd-Carpenter, Major Sir A. B. Grotrian, H. Brent Remer, J. R.
Bridgeman, Rt. Hon. William Clive Gunston, Captain D. W. Roberts, E. H. G. (Flint)
Briscoe, Richard George Hacking, Douglas H. Ropner, Major L.
Brittain, Sir Harry Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich) Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)
Brooke, Brigadier-General C. R. I. Hall, Admiral Sir R. (Eastbourne) Sandeman, N. Stewart
Brown, Col. D. C. (N'th'l'd., Hexham) Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry Sanders, Sir Robert A.
Buchan, John Harland, A. Shepperson, E. W.
Burman, J. B. Hartington, Marquess of Skelton, A. N.
Campbell, E. T. Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M. Slaney, Major P. Kenyon
Cope, Major William Henderson, Capt. R. R. (Oxf'd, Henley) Smith-Carington, Neville W.
Couper, J. B. Hennessy, Major Sir G. R. J. Stanley, Lieut.-Colonel Rt. Hon. G. F.
Courtauld, Major J. S. Herbert, Dennis (Hertford, Watford) Stanley, Hon. O. F. G. (Westm'eland)
Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L. Hilton, Cecil Storry-Deans, R.
Crookshank, Cpt. H. (Lindsey, Gainsbro) Hope, Capt. A. O. J. (Warw'k, Nun.) Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)
Culverwell, C. T. (Bristol, West) Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.) Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)
Curzon, Captain Viscount King, Commodore Henry Douglas Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell
Davidson, Rt. Hon. J. (Hertford) Lane Fox, Col. Rt. Hon. George R. Titchfield, Major the Marquess of
Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil) Looker, Herbert William Vaughan-Morgan, Col. K. P.
Elliot, Major Walter E. Macmillan, Captain H. Ward, Lt.-Col. A. L. (Kingston-on-Hull)
Everard, W. Lindsay Margesson, Captain D. Waterhouse, Captain Charles
Watson, Rt. Hon. W. (Carlisle) Williams, Herbert G. (Reading) Wragg, Herbert
Watts, Dr. T. Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl
Wayland, Sir William A. Womersley, W. J. TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Wells, S. R. Woodcock, Colonel H. C. Sir Victor Warrender and Captain Wallace.

It being after Half-past Eleven of the Clock upon Tuesday evening, Mr. SPEAKER adjourned the House without Question put, pursuant to the Standing order.

Adjourned at Half after Twelve O'Clock.