§ Sub-section (4) of Section five of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1927 (which amends the first statutory condition in relation to persons incapacitated for work by reason of some specific disease or by bodily or mental disablement) shall have effect as if after the word "disablement" there were inserted the words "or employed in any of the employments specified in Part II of the First Schedule to the principal Act," and as if after the word "incapacity" there were inserted the words "or if such employment as aforesaid.—[Miss Bondfield.]
§ Brought up, and read the First time.
§ The MINISTER of LABOUR (Miss Bondfield)
I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
The purpose of this new Clause is to deal with the Amendment moved by my hon. Friend the Member for Sunderland (Dr. Marion Phillips). As sick work-people are allowed an additional period before being regarded as failing to satisfy the contribution qualification, that provision is now extended to those persons who are employed in a non-insurable trade. The Section, as finally amended, will read as follows:(4) If an insured contributor proves in the prescribed manner that he was during any periods, falling within the period of two years mentioned in the first statutory condition, incapacitated for work by reason of some specific disease or by bodily or mental disablement, or employed in any of the employments specified in Part II of the First Schedule to the principal Act, the said condition shall have effect as if for the said period of two years there were substituted a period of two years increased by the said periods of incapacity, or of such employment as aforesaid, but so as not to exceed in any case four years.
§ Major ELLIOT
This new Clause raises a question of some importance, and it will be well to note here that we are making, to a certain extent, a further breach in the principle of genuine compulsory insurance. No doubt it is a good thing that every encouragement should be given to persons to find work, 1008 if it is at all possible, in any uninsured trades, but it is clear that the unsuccessful lives will tend to fall back again upon the insurance fund. There is no doubt that that process of filtration is about to take place.
§ Miss BONDFIELD
It may be so, but I do not think we should discourage people from going into domestic service or agriculture.
§ Major ELLIOT
I point it out only from the point of view of the contributors to the fund. They will find themselves, in so far as this scheme works successfully, saddled with an increasing number of bad lives. A filtration of successful lives will take place in agriculture, domestic service or other employment, and the bad lives will tend to fall back into the fund, and to that extent will tend to be a further drain upon its resources. We are not unacquainted with the subject in health insurance, and one of the difficulties of helping people to pass out and back again, or extending the principle of voluntary contributions to health insurance, is, of course, the selection of bad lives. In this case the good lives will gain success in the new line of employment into which they have entered, and the bad lives will fall back into the fund and still further drain its resources.
§ Clause added to the Bill.