HC Deb 19 February 1931 vol 248 cc1419-20

asked the Minister of Labour whether a final decision has yet been reached in the eligibility for unemployment insurance benefit of the workers locked out in the Lancashire cotton industry?


No, Sir. The Insurance Officer is submitting certain cases on appeal to the umpire, and there may be associations in other cases.


In view of the fact that the producers in the cotton industry provide the employer's contribution, the employés contribution, and the State's contribution, does not the right hon. Lady think that a decision should be reached forthwith?


asked the Minister of Labour whether her attention has been called to the case of Thomas Dodson, of 154, Holystone Crescent, Heaton, Newcastle-on-Tyne, at the Heaton Employment Exchange, No. 29,898, who was a regular contributor for Unemployment Benefit for a period of six years until a recent date when, rather than apply for the Unemployment Benefit, he commenced business for himself as a jobbing bricklayer, and, having failed and lost his capital, made application to the Court of Referees and had his claim for benefit disallowed, being thus penalised because he endeavoured to maintain himself; and whether she will give favourable consideration to this case?


I am having inquiries made and will communicate the result to the hon. Member as soon as they are complete.

23. Mr. LAWRIE

asked the Minister of Labour if the reported statement of a member of the Stalybridge Court of Referees has been brought to her notice that 600 out of 900 cotton workers in Stalybridge had been disallowed benefit for refusing to accept domestic service; and if she will inquire into this matter and state what are the facts?


My attention has been called to the Press report to this effect, and I am glad to have this opportunity of stating that it is completely erroneous. The figure of 600 was the total number of persons, men, women, boys and girls, whose claims for benefit have been disallowed in Stalybridge for all causes since 19th March, 1930. The total number of persons whose claims have been disallowed for refusing offers of employment of any sort from 19th March, 1930, to 5th January, 1931, does not exceed 53, and, of course, only some of these were refusals of domestic service.


In view of the disparity between the figures in the reply and those in the question, what steps does the right hon. Lady propose to take with the member of the Court of Referees who was responsible for the statement to which wide publicity has been given?


I propose to direct his personal attention to the matter.

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