§ 3.58 p.m.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
On a point of Order, Mr. Chairman. May I raise the question of the first Amendment on the Paper in the names of the hon. Member for Shettleston (Mr. McGovern), the hon. Member for Bridgeton (Mr. Maxton) and myself to leave out Sub-section (1)? I had hoped that the Amendment would have been called, because it raises the whole question of whether children of 14 ought to be within insurance at all. I intended to submit to you, before we came to discuss any of the conditions arising out of insurance, that we ought to discuss, first of all, the principle of whether it is wise or not to have children between the ages of 14 and 16 included in insurance at all.
§ The CHAIRMAN
I can tell the hon. Member why I am not selecting the Amendment; it is because I think that it would be better to raise this point on the question of the Clause standing part. It is our practice that the Committee discusses the details of a Clause before it discusses the principle of the Clause on the question whether the Clause as a whole should stand part.
§ 4.0 p.m.
§ Mr. COVE
I beg to move, in page 2, line 6, to leave out from "Acts" to "of," in line 7, and to insert, "in respect."
The Minister, when he introduced this Bill, made the House realise that the problem of the unemployed juvenile was one with which the Government were gravely concerned, and, apparently, from the statement of the Minister, the Government had given the matter long, anxious and, indeed, very serious consideration. After all their consideration of this problem, which is grave in its magnitude at the present moment, and 50 will become increasingly grave in the next few years, it appears that the contribution of the Government to this very serious problem is contained in this Clause. Coupled with the statement of the Minister there was the statement which we had on the previous occasion from the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education when the question was put as to whether the Government would raise the school age, and he replied quite definitely that this was the policy which the Government had accepted as far as the juveniles were concerned. There is embodied in this Clause the first provision that is necessary in order to carry out this entirely inadequate policy of the Government in relation to this major and very grave problem which lies immediately before us. It is a proposal which we, on this side, will fight for all we are worth, and will resist with every justification I believe, because it does not meet the problem which confronts us.
The House considered this question on a previous occasion. I well remember the proposal which was brought forward to insure the children, and many of us joined, some of us in opposition to our own Government, to defeat that proposal. It was eventually defeated, because at that time the House, as then constituted, felt very strongly that once we handed over the children to unemployment insurance, those who desired to maintain them in the field of education could give up any hope. It was felt very strongly in the House at that time that insurance would be an effective bar to raising the school age. Then, I well recall later on—I believe in the last Labour Government—it was suggested that the age for insurance should coincide with the school-leaving age. That, undoubtedly, is the principle of the Labour party, but we made it very clear at that time, by the words of the Clause in which that policy was involved, that it should be dependent upon the school age being raised to 15. In this proposal there is no such qualifying or limiting condition.
I think, therefore, that I am fully justified—and in this I am supported by the party for which I speak—in moving this Amendment in order to relieve the children from the payment of the contribution, for one or two very sound 51 reasons. First of all, this is not ordinary insurance. The finances of the scheme, if they are studied, are very revealing and very illuminating. I think that it can be established without a doubt that the finances of the scheme are such that the Exchequer is actually going to make a profit out of the contributions of these children. The Minister spoke as though the Government's heart were bleeding on account of their anxiety for these children. But when we come to the concrete proposals we find that they are going to make the children pay their quota in financing the junior instruction centres. We on this side say quite definitely that this is an iniquitous proposal. If the National Labour Members present were able to take an independent line this afternoon, even they would say that. If my hon. and learned Friend opposite will look into it, he will agree with me. If not, I cannot help the hon. and learned Member's intelligence and lack of application to the Measure. It is certainly true to say that the contribution which these children will pay into the Insurance Fund will be used in part to finance the junior instruction centres. We say that the Insurance Fund as a whole should not be used to finance the junior instruction centres, that none of the money going into the Insurance Fund should finance those centres and that the total financial burden should be borne by the National Exchequer.
If hon. Members will look at the finances involved, I do not think that this can be disputed. I have taken the figures from the Report of the Actuary, and I do not think what I say will be disputed by the Minister. A total contribution income of £760,000 is expected, and the expenditure on junior instruction centres will be £425,000 out of the Insurance Fund, £425,000 out of the Exchequer and £280,000 out of the Exchequer of the local authorities. The £425,000 which this Clause proposes to take towards financing the junior instruction centres is, in our judgment, an iniquitous proposal. If I am wrong, I am quite prepared to be corrected, but I have studied the Actuary's Report with more than usual care, and I find that, whereas the contributions into the fund are calculated for the period from 14 to 16 years of age, the expenditure side for these 52 junior instruction centres is calculated, not from 14 to 16, but from 14 to 18 years of age. That is not a fair way of meeting the case. If we had the matter balanced properly, there should be a balance between the same periods of time, that is, the expenditure period from 14 to 16 years of age ought to be balanced with the income period from 14 to 16. In other words, I think it is fair to remark that the Government are putting on the expenditure side in this scheme a sum round about £200,000 which ought not to be there, that instead of charging the fund with a sum of £425,000 for educating or rather—I had better be careful about words—for keeping these children in junior instruction centres, it ought to be lessened by somewhere about one-half. It is unfair to put into these finances the cost of the junior instruction centres from 16 to 18 years of age. If that is done, instead of £425,000, the figure I say should be somewhere round about £200,000.
If hon. Members will make a budget for themselves, they will find that, instead of the Exchequer having to make a grant towards the deficiency—I believe it is calculated that the deficiency on this part of the fund is about £65,000—if the ages of expenditure coincided with the ages of income, there would not be a deficiency, but there would be a profit on the fund. Therefore, I am right in my previous assertion that the Government, instead of coming forward generously and meeting this situation by throwing the cost even of the junior instruction centres where it ought to be borne, namely, on the National Exchequer, they are making an actual profit out of the Unemployment Insurance Fund. We object to it not only because of the way the scheme is financed, but we object to it also in principle. I said previously that this is not insurance. I do not know how any hon. Member, much less the Minister, whose heart, I understood, bled for these children, and who is cognisant of the tremendous problem that lies before him, can get up here and say, "We are going to take twopence from the children, and twopence from the employers and then give no insurance benefit when the children are unemployed." There is no benefit.
We have heard a great deal about the actuarial basis of the Insurance Fund having to be made sound and that it must 53 be solvent, that it must be run on an insurance basis. That has been the great plea of the Government's spokesmen, as I have understood. They have said that it is in the interests of the unemployed that the Unemployment Insurance Fund should be solvent and that it should be a real Insurance Fund. Where is the insurance here? The children will pay their contributions, but it is specifically provided that although they pay their contributions from the age of 14 to 16 no child, if unemployed, has an insurance right to unemployment benefit out of the fund. I think that fact cannot be disputed. It is true that a dependence benefit is provided, but that will come only if the parent and the child are unemployed together. Both must be unemployed. That is in the nature of a dependence benefit and as such it ought to come out of the insurance of the parent and not out of the insurance of the child. Let me put it this way. The sum for paying dependence benefit ought not to be equated against the contributions paid by the children from the age of 14 to 16. That dependence benefit ought not to come out of the contributions paid by the children. The employer and the State ought to meet the charge. The parents pay to the Unemployment Insurance Fund and out of that fund the dependence benefit ought to be paid.
In order to justify the scheme the Government say: "Look how much we are paying out." The only way that they can show that they are paying out as much as is paid is, first, by imposing a cost for juvenile instruction centres which ought not to be there, and secondly, by including the cost for dependence benefit, which ought not to be there. This is not insurance. We have had many debates during the past 10 or 12 years about raising the school age and it has often been said: "You must not give children unemployment benefit; it will demoralise them." It is terribly demoralising to have 2s., 3s., or perhaps 5s. a week unemployment benefit in the case of children, and I suppose that plea is the justification for the action of the Minister. It is proposed to make the children pay 2d. a week contribution and then to prevent them by law from having one penny benefit out of that. I have very definitely come to the conclusion, after watching the youths who have been unemployed, that it is poverty and lack 54 of income that demoralises and that there is no demoralisation in receiving actual cash benefit, especially when it has been paid for, as it is to be paid for under this scheme.
I think the Minister ought to amend the Bill in this respect. I cannot see what reason there can be for refusing unemployment benefit to an unemployed child who has paid into the Insurance Fund. What justification can there be? How can it be said that it is demoralising to the children to receive unemployment benefit? Such a statement is sheer unadulterated humbug. It has been said in the past that the payment of unemployment benefit would stop the raising of the school age and would have educational disadvantages. I cannot believe any such thing. Under this pseudo insurance scheme the Minister of Labour is coming into a field where the Board of Education, ought to be the Department concerned. The finance of the scheme does not justify itself. The general principles of equity are against this imposition. Take the children's contributions away, cut them clean out. On the ground that this is not an insurance scheme. You are making them pay money for benefits which they will not get, and the Minister of Labour is using funds for the training of these children or for the supposed saving of their moral, which ought not to be used.
§ 4.22 p.m.
§ Mr. BANFIELD
In supporting the Amendment I want to point out that it is a well-known and accepted principle that money should not be paid without a pro-rata return. I and my friends object to the payment of these twopences by the children at the age of 14, on the ground that we are unable to see that when they have paid their contributions they are going to get any benefit. The Minister has put up a case and all sorts of things are brought in to show where the money is to be spent. We are convinced that, in the main, the payment of this money with respect to the juvenile instruction centres ought not to be charged against the twopenny contributions of the children. The Government are asking children at the age of 14 to pay 2d. a week into an unemployment scheme from which they will get no benefit. It may be thought by many hon. Members that twopence is a very small amount, but from my personal experience 55 even the small sum of twopence taken out of the very meagre earnings of little children assumes a very big proportionate sum. In the constituency which I represent children at the age of 14 go to the neighbouring city of Birmingham to be employed on machines. The wages they are paid are not more than 8s., 9s. or 10s. a week. Out of that they pay fares sometimes to the extent of 3s. or 4s. a week, and meals have to be provided. Sheer economic circumstances in the majority of cases compel poor parents to send their children into the labour market at that age, and 2d. per week is to be stopped from their earnings.
Does it not seem a little mean to build up junior instruction centres out of the twopences of very poor children and their equally poor parents? I have complained and many hon. Members have complained regarding what many of us consider the shameful exploitation of the labour of young children. If the Government desire or declare that this money shall be found in respect of children between the ages of 14 and 16, surely it would not be a very great hardship if the Government found one penny and the employer the other penny. In many instances the employers so shamelessly exploit the labour of young children that I am not sure that it would not be a wise policy to compel the employers to pay the whole of the sixpence, if it was considered necessary. If the parent is unemployed and the child is unemployed at precisely the same time an allowance of 2s. may be paid to the parent in respect of the unemployed child, and it is suggested that that allowance will amount to something like £75,000 a year. It seems rather mean and paltry to charge that sum of £75,000 against the twopenny contributions of the children.
It is stated that the cost of the junior instruction centres to be charged against these twopences will be £425,000. Does it not strike hon. Members that there is something radically wrong when it is suggested in the Bill that children are to be employed at 14 years of age and that at 16 years of age they are to be thrown upon the labour market? Are they too old at 16 for industry? If so, they are presumably to go to the junior instruction centres? What are they to learn there?
§ Mr. BANFIELD
I am sorry. I suggest that the twopences of the children should not be used for financing the junior instruction centres. The general principle underlying the question of children contributing to the Unemployment Insurance Fund seems to me altogether wrong. There was a time when hon. Members opposite protested very strongly against bringing children into insurance at such an age. It would be better if the Minister would consider whether other ways and means could not be found of dealing with children entering into industry. The cool assumption that children are to be exploited at 14 years of age and thrown into the gutter at the age of 16 makes me shudder to think of the future of young persons in this country. The Committee ought to be able to find far better means of dealing with this problem than extracting twopences from the very meagre pay of children at 14 years of age. Hon. Members would scarcely credit the big proportion that the twopenny contribution assumes in hundreds of thousands of very poor homes. It will be hard to convince their parents that these children when they are out of work ought not to receive any benefit. There will be numerous complaints and protests, and these parents will be justified in declaring that the Minister has no right to extract this money from the pockets of their children and give them nothing in return. The whole method of dealing with this question is altogether wrong and I shall support the Amendment.
§ 4.31 p.m.
§ Miss HORSBRUGH
I am surprised at some of the arguments put forward by the last two hon. Members on the subject of insurance for young people. They contradict each other. First of all, objection is taken because the scheme is not real insurance, and later we are told that it would be far better if no contributions at all were paid by children between 14 and 16 years of age. These two arguments do not go well together. The interesting point put forward by the Labour party is that what is wanted is real insurance. Hitherto we have been led to believe that hon. Members 57 opposite have not been in favour of real insurance; to-day we have been informed that what is wanted is real insurance. Therefore, if I can prove that these young people are going to be brought into a scheme of real insurance I presume we shall have their wholehearted support and a withdrawal of this Amendment. It ham been said that these young people are to get no benefit, that they are being exploited. For many years those who have been interested in the problem of young people leaving school and taking up work have all been in favour of bridging the gap between the school and work by some scheme. Hon. Members may think that the school age should be raised, but I would draw their attention to the fact that the Bill we are discussing is an Unemployment Bill, not an educational Bill. I have looked carefully through it and cannot find the age of 14 mentioned, it merely refers to the time up to which parents are obliged to keep their children at full time education.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
On a point of Order. I had an Amendment on the Paper raising the issue of the school age, but you, Mr. Chairman, in a Ruling which I did not challenge, said that you could not see your way to call that Amendment as it raised the question of the school leaving age. I want to submit respectfully that the hon. Member for Dundee (Miss Horsbrugh) is now discussing the point which you would not allow me to raise, and I submit that having disallowed my Amendment which raised the issue of the school leaving age it is somewhat unfair to my Amendment if that question is to be discussed on this Amendment.
§ The CHAIRMAN
The hon. Member will realise that he made a slight slip when he said that his Amendment raised the school leaving age. I was watching the hon. Member for Dundee (Miss Horsbrugh) very carefully and although I do not think she is out of order in what she has said so far, it is clear that we cannot on this Amendment go into a general discussion on the raising of the school leaving age or the insurance age.
§ Miss HORSBRUGH
I was trying to point out that the question of the school age was not only out of order now but out of order on the Bill as a whole. It is a Bill for unemployment. The point 58 is whether this is real insurance, and whether there is some return for the twopence which the child is to pay. I think it is quite obvious that there is a return of more than the 2s. which the parent who is unemployed is to receive if the child is also unemployed. In no insurance scheme is benefit paid immediately the person enters into insurance; there is always a time of waiting. It is said that during the two years no benefit will be received except by parents who may be unemployed, but I would remind hon. Members opposite that there are benefits after those two years which are coming to the child who is insured. Under the present scheme young persons who enter at the age of 16 do not draw benefit at the age of 16, the earliest time they can draw benefit is 16 years and 30 weeks. Under the scheme in the Bill, having paid in from the age of 14, a child will be able to draw benefit at the age of 16 and will not have to wait those 30 weeks. Furthermore, when the young person has reached the age of 19 he will then come under the new scheme of the five years insurance. He will have a chance to make contributions during the five years, and should he then become unemployed he will be able to draw the longer standard benefit allowed under the Bill for those under the five years insurance scheme.
It will be a great pity if what has been said by hon. Members opposite lead people to believe that twopence is being taken from these young persons and nothing given in return. Hon. Members opposite know the facts as well as we do about insurance. They know that in no case does a person get benefit immediately on paying insurance. I wonder if hon. Members opposite really think it is a bad bargain for the twopence paid during these two years when they calculate the benefits these young persons will receive if at the age of 16 they become unemployed. If they calculate the benefits they will receive I think they will find that the bargain offered to these persons is not a bad bargain. It has been suggested that the whole thing should be paid for by the employers. Would that be insurance? Would that child be able to draw benefit as a right? The moral point of view has been put forward; whether it is right that these young persons should be asked to pay 59 this twopence. I think it would be wrong if they were asked to pay nothing and then at the age of 16 received the dole. It is far better that from the start of their industrial life the boy or girl should realise that a portion of their money is being put aside for the bad days when they will be unemployed. The insurance scheme was wrong when this gap existed, and there was no reason why the boy and girl should be outside the scheme. It was illogical. Therefore this scheme, apart altogether from the instruction that is going to be given, by which these young persons are being called upon to pay a small amount from their weekly wage is on the right lines. We do not want to pauperise these young people; they should be able to enter into the insurance scheme, pay their contributions—not receive everything from the employer and the State—and then, when they draw their benefits, they will be able to realise that they have assisted themselves by their own contributions. For these reasons, apart altogether from the instruction which is to be given which will be of immense benefit, this scheme, bringing these young people in from the start and asking them to help themselves, is on the right lines and I am sure that the people of the country will appreciate it.
§ 4.41 p.m.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
I am not going to follow the hon. Member for Dundee (Miss Horsbrugh) into the question as to whether the age should be 14 or 16. That is not the Amendment we are now discussing. The Amendment has to do with contributions and benefits, and the question as to whether there should be a gap or not is not really the issue. We are discussing the question of contributions and the benefits which a young person between the ages of 14 and 16 years shall pay and receive. On that issue one point has been raised. Why should not a child between the ages of 14 and 16 qualify for benefit with 30 stamps in the same way as other persons? The hon. Member for Dundee made some reference to the "gap," but did not answer that point. She said she was not in favour of pauperising these young persons. If that is the case why does she not allow a child between the ages of 14 and 16 to qualify 60 for insurance in the same way as other persons? If she does not want to pauperise these young persons then why, once you bring them within insurance, should not a child qualify with 30 contributions? That is the issue. Once you bring in young persons between 14 and 16 years of age there is no reason why they should not qualify for benefit at the end of 30 contributions. I know that they are to receive benefit at the age of 16 instead of 16½ years, but our contention is that they should receive benefit at an earlier stage; that they should qualify for benefit once they are brought within the scope of insurance.
There is another important point. It is alleged that there is a benefit of 2s. which is now to be paid to the parent who is unemployed if the child is unemployed. In actual effect, in administration, the 2s. will not be paid in great masses of cases. The child is to get the 2s. only if it fulfils the condition that it is able to get a job, or the parent is not to get the 2s. as a right the moment the child is unemployed. The child has first to prove that it has not been able to get a job or that it has not refused a job. The child is hedged round with restrictions. The parent may be refused the 2s. because of something over which the parent has no control.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
The Noble Lady says it is not the parents' insurance but the child's. The point I am discussing is the parents' insurance, the dependants' benefit. The parent is refused the two shillings because the child is alleged to have done something wrong. The parent cannot prove that the allegation is unfounded; the boy is the only person who can do that. The position is that a boy of 14 has to go before the court and prove matters which adults cannot prove at the present time. Some say that children to-day, more than formerly, like to remain at school after the age of 14. I do not dispute that that is so to some extent, but the great mass of children look forward to leaving school. That is so in Scotland even. A child wants to leave school, and the Bill makes it a condition of the two-shillings benefit that the child must go back to a form of school. As a matter of fact at the present time under 61 the existing law two shillings is paid to a parent on the condition that a child attends school. The unemployed parent now gets two shillings until the child reaches the age of 16. All the difference that the Bill makes is that a child is able to receive unemployment benefit at 16 instead of at sixteen and a half. Apart from that there is nothing at all in the Bill for the child.
§ 4.50 p.m.
I do not mind a real fight, but I object to a sham fight, and it seems to me that the opposition to this proposal affecting juveniles is absolutely sham from start to finish. Hon. Members forget that the point of insuring these children is to close a gap. Hon. Members know that in the last Parliament we had no way of controlling the employment of children.
§ The CHAIRMAN
The Noble Lady is discussing the Clause now. She must confine her remarks to the question raised in the Amendment.
The discussion has been fairly broad. The last speaker referred to the school age.
I was talking about employment. The whole point of the Clause is that children can go into employment at 14 and will not be allowed——
§ The CHAIRMAN
The Amendment does not raise the whole point of the Clause. That can be raised on the Motion, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill."
We all know perfectly well that the hon. Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove) has been longing for legislation like this. He has asked for it, but now that the Government are bringing it in he gets up in pretended passion as if we on our side were not interested in juveniles.
§ Mr. THORNE
Let us assume that a child between 14 and 16 gets 20 weeks' work and then becomes unemployed and cannot get work again for two years. Would that child be qualified at 16 to receive the benefit, or is it compelled to have 30 stamps before it is qualified for benefit?
§ 4.56 p.m.
§ The MINISTER of LABOUR (Sir Henry Betterton)
I rise at this stage because it would probably be for the convenience of the Committee to clear away this Amendment before discussing the really substantial question raised in the Clause as a whole. I shall deliberately refrain from dealing with the points about bridging the gap and raising the school age, because they come up more properly on the Motion, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill." In reply to the hon. Member for Plaistow (Mr. Thorne), as to whether 30 contributions would be necessary before qualifying for benefit, the answer is in the affirmative. Let me pass to the Amendment. It is really of a limited character. The Mover said that the child should not be called upon to contribute anything, but that the other contributions, those of the employer and of the Treasury, should remain. If you eliminate the contribution of the child, automatically you cut in half the contribution of the Exchequer, because the Exchequer contribution is half the contribution of the employer and of the child. Under the finance of this scheme it is contemplated that the total income from contributions will be £760,000 or to be exact £759,000. Of that the Exchequer contribution will be one-third, or £253,000. If you cut down the Exchequer contribution by one-half, the result will be that the £760,000 income will be reduced by £126,000 to £634,000.
If you do not take any children's contributions you further reduce the income by £253,000, which it is estimated will be the total of the children's contributions. Therefore, you will have a fund, not of £760,000, but of not more than £380,000. If this scheme is a good scheme, quite clearly that fund would be insufficient to meet the purposes for which we want it. It has been suggested that the Exchequer is behaving in a rather niggardly way in the matter, that it is making no real contribution at all, and suggestions have even gone so far 63 as to imply that this really is a scheme to be financed out of the children's pence. On a basis of about 100,000 children attending the centres, it is estimated that the additional cost of the centres will be £1,130,000. With regard to this estimate of 100,000 children, let me remind the Committee of a fact which I am sure the hon. Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove) has not forgotten, namely, that we are approaching a time when the number of children leaving school will be considerably in excess of what we have had in previous years. In making this estimate I deliberately fixed the number of children at a rather high figure having that fact in mind.
Let me point out what will be the cost to the Exchequer in this matter. It is a very considerable sum. It is open to hon. Members to take the view that it is inadequate, or, on the other hand, to take the view that it is not an ungenerous contribution. But let me point out to the Committee what the Exchequer is actually doing. First, it is paying normally a half of 75 per cent. of the total cost of the centres. It will be remembered that the cost is to be borne as to 25 per cent. by the local authority, and, of the remaining 75 per cent., half is borne by the fund and half by the Exchequer.
§ Sir H. BETTERTON
I am trying to show what the figures are, and the hon. Member can comment upon them afterwards. The half of the 75 per cent. of the cost comes to £425,000. That is to be borne by the Exchequer. In addition, it pays, of course, a one-third of the total contribution—that is, the child pays 2d., the employer pays 2d., and the Exchequer pays 2d. The Exchequer's one-third of the contribution is estimated to come to £253,000, and that added to the figure which I have already given, makes a total of £678,000 additional to be paid by the Exchequer. When hon. Members criticise the action of the Government let them not forget that that very considerable sum is being paid by the Exchequer for this service. Now we come to the question of what the children will get out of it, and I propose to give one or two further sets of 64 figures in view of the criticism which has been made to the effect that the children are being asked to pay their twopences and are not getting their money's worth. As the hon. Member for Dundee (Miss Horsbrugh) has pointed out, no less than £230,000 will be the cost of lowering the age of benefit from 16½ years to 16. A child in future will not have to wait until the age of 16½, but will have the benefits and advantages of insurance at 16.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
And subject to conditions. Every one of these children will be subject to conditions which do not now apply. You are imposing extra conditions.
§ Sir H. BETTERTON
I am prepared to argue that point with the hon. Gentleman, but what is certain, at any rate, is that in future the child gets at the age of 16 what formerly he did not get until he was 16½ and, as I say, that is going to cost £230,000. Then there is the 2s. benefit in respect of the unemployed child of an unemployed insured parent. I should have thought that that was an additional advantage and that it would at any rate be of some use to the unemployed parent with an unemployed child.
§ Sir H. BETTERTON
On the other hand he is getting, first, the advantage of the reduction of the age of benefit from 16½ to 16 and he is also getting the advantage of these courses of instruction, to which I attach great importance. In addition, the contributions under the age of 16 will have value when we come to consider the child's interest under the ratio rule for additional benefit at a later age. As I say, it is open to hon. 65 Members to take the view that it is a bad scheme or a good scheme. I am certain of this, that in the interests of the children it is the very best scheme that has been put before the House of Commons for a very long time. The passing of this Amendment would necessarily mean the end of the scheme, and therefore those who vote for it will incur a responsibility which I think they will regret.
§ 5.10 p.m.
§ Mr. ARTHUR GREENWOOD
I am sorry that the right hon. Gentleman has not met our case. We do not propose in view of the curtailment of debate to divide on every Amendment, but we must divide on Amendments of substance and we regard this as an Amendment of substance. I hope later to have something to say on other questions which have been hinted at in the course of this Debate, but the discussion of which has been prohibited; the proposal of the Clause which is now before the Committee, however, is a simple one. It is to reduce the age at which children enter unemployment insurance from 16 to 14, but not to give them the benefits which ought to accrue to them as insured persons between those ages. That is the proposal of the Bill. It is a financial swindle. It is based on very good bookkeeping, from the Government's point of view, but men are in prison for the same kind of bookkeeping. It is dishonest accountancy. I am not an accountant, but I can add up honest figures. These are not honest figures. We are told by the Minister that the three sets of contributors will contribute £760,000 per year. That is the income side.
The expenditure side includes benefit after the age of 16, during 30 weeks of insurance only, amounting to £230,000. The whole purpose of such a scheme as this is insurance against unemployment. But those who are now to be brought into it will have no insurance against unemployment until they are 16, and then they get it 30 weeks earlier than would otherwise have been the case. That as I say is going to cost £230,000. If I were a financier I should like to run an insurance scheme of that kind. The people concerned in the scheme will by that time have paid in £1,500,000—£760,000 per year—and all that is to be paid out to the insured persons is £230,000. I do not 66 think it honest but it is very good high finance. The insured children themselves will have paid £500,000 and at the end of two years these youngsters in the aggregate will draw £230,000.
§ Mr. HERBERT WILLIAMS
Suppose the unemployment situation were to improve very much and that all these people were in employment and no benefit had to be paid out at all, would the right hon. Gentleman regard it as a fraud—as he has just now described it?
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
If the Government are so confident that the unemployment situation is going to improve in the future then the terms of this scheme represent a bigger swindle than ever. The second item of expenditure which is loaded into the other side of the account is the payment of dependents benefit. What is the position of the juvenile between 14 and 16? If he is out of work he gets nothing unless both he and his father are unemployed together. Under successive Insurance Acts a parent has been given the right to receive benefit in aid of his dependants. This additional £75,000 goes to the parent. The child has no right to receive it. The parent receives it and it ought to be regarded as an addition to the normal expenditure of the fund. After all it is very small. The law of the land to-day is that if a child remains at school after the end of the term in which he reaches the age of 14, then in the event of the parent being unemployed, dependant's benefit continues to be paid in respect of that child up to the age of 16. Now we are putting into the hands of the Minister the power to compel children to attend training centres. The educational aspect of the matter can be discussed on another occasion, but this is merely a small extension of the existing law of the land and it is unjustifiable to load that side of the account with the expenditure of £75,000.
Does not the right hon. Gentleman think, as a matter of practice, that the unemployment money ought to go to the parents of the children rather than to children under 16. Would he not rather have it that way if it were the case of his own child? I am sure his wife would.
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
The Noble Lady is always interesting but usually irrelevant. That is not the point with which I 67 am dealing. These children are minors and, no doubt, the parents would handle the money if they had benefit. The point that I am making is that these children are compelled to contribute, but that they do not, in respect of their own unemployment, receive unemployment insurance benefit, whether it is handled by them or by their parents. Now I come to what I regard as the greatest hoax in all this bookkeeping account—this weighting of the scheme with a very considerable proportion of the cost of courses of instruction. These children are expected to pay 2d. per week for two years, to contribute a substantial proportion of the cost of the training courses, from the years 14 to 18. Either this is an educational service or it is not. I cannot argue that point at this stage, but if the Minister is regarding this as an unemployment service, it ought to fall upon the community as a whole and not upon the fund in the way that it is going to do. The right hon. Gentleman assumed an attendance of 100,000 at these juvenile training centres, and he said he did so——
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
The only point that I am arguing is the figure. The right hon. Gentleman talked about the cost of £425,000.
§ The CHAIRMAN
I thought the right hon. Gentleman was getting on to the general question of instruction centres.
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
No, Sir. I will observe your Ruling. As I understood the right hon. Gentleman, he is basing his cost of the scheme, the £425,000 per year, on an attendance of 100,000, and his argument was that of this cost the State paid 37½ per cent. That is far less than it is paying for any education in this country to-day conducted by local authorities. This kind of training is necessitated by economic circumstances over which no local authority has control. Why should a local authority be expected to pay 25 per cent., the contributors to the scheme a very substantial proportion, and the State less than it is providing for any other educational service in this country? When the right hon. Gentleman says that it is not only £425,000, but also the State's contribution and that 68 therefore the cost is £678,000, that, I think, is really comic arithmetic. What about the £230,000 which the juveniles are contributing to this scheme? Those figures really ought to be excluded. We do not believe that this is the right way to deal with this question. We believe that this scheme, in its financial arrangements, is mean and unworthy of any Government, we believe that juveniles are being exploited under this scheme to help the solvency of the fund, we believe that this kind of bookkeeping is not straightforward and honest, and we think that in these circumstances those of us on these benches are entitled to carry our views into the Lobby and to vote in favour of the Amendment.
§ 5.19 p.m.
§ Captain Sir WILLIAM BRASS
A great deal has been said about the 2d. which is to be contributed for two years by these children before they come into benefit; that is, assuming that all the children start at 14. I want to ask my right hon. Friend whether, assuming that a child started at 15 and contributed for only one year, that child could then receive benefit at 16 instead of 16½, provided, of course, that it paid 30 contributions?
§ 5.20 p.m.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
Could the right hon. Gentleman say why a child who has contributed 30 stamps should not be entitled under an insurance scheme to receive benefit for the 30 stamps, even if the age was below 16? Would it not be better to put them on the same rate of contribution as people over 16 and give them their insurance rights at 30 stamps, the same as anybody else? Why is the child differentiated against on this alleged insurance principle?
§ The CHAIRMAN
Before the Minister answers, I would say that I do not want to cut out these points in so far as they refer to this Amendment, but hon. Members will realise that the Minister, in replying, must not go into detail.
§ 5.22 p.m.
§ Sir H. BETTERTON
The answer to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Clitheroe (Sir W. Brass) is "Yes." The answer to the hon. Member for Gorbals (Mr. Buchanan) is that it is a matter of opinion. We do not think it is to the advantage and benefit of a child 69 between 14 and 16 to draw what is called the "dole." As a matter of principle, we do not think it is to the child's own advantage that it should draw this.
§ 5.23 p.m.
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
I do not know whether I misunderstood the right hon. Gentleman opposite, but he said that of the cost of this educational scheme the Exchequer would only bear 37 per cent. I have in front of me the Financial Memorandum on the Bill, in which it is pointed out that the Exchequer will pay half of the immediate charge.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
But the fund also bears part, and that fund has been contributed as to one-third by the Exchequer, and I do not know whether the right hon. Gentleman took that into account.
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
The whole of my point on that side of my argument was that it was improper to take contributions into account at all in that respect.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
It is an ultimate charge on the fund, and you should take into account everything that the Exchequer pays.
§ 5.24 p.m.
§ Mr. WALLHEAD
I want to enter my protest against the use of the word "dole" by the Minister a moment or two ago.
§ Mr. WALLHEAD
I hope that in the course of this Debate we shall not use the word "dole." I most emphatically object to it, and I know many self-respecting unemployed men who object to it. This fund is supposed to be a solvent fund, and the word "dole" is not at all fit to use here in any sense whatever, and I protest against it. I want to add that this is, in my opinion, a niggardly method of dealing with an entirely new problem. We have to bear in mind that the Government are now dealing manifestly with the emergence of a new problem in our country's industry. I think most men of my age at any rate, and probably of a decade or two younger than myself, recognise that until very recently the question of unemployment among juveniles never arose at all. There was no question of boys being out of work. Always there was employment for young boys and young girls, but now——
§ Question put, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Clause."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 303; Noes, 41.73
|Division No. 67.]||AYES.||[5.25 p.m.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir Francis Dyke||Braithwaite, J. G. (Hillsborough)||Conant, R. J. E.|
|Adams, Samuel Vyvyan T. (Leeds, W.)||Brass, Captain Sir William||Cook, Thomas A.|
|Agnew, Lleut.-Com. P. G.||Briant, Frank||Cooke, Douglas|
|Albery, Irving James||Broadbent, Colonel John||Copeland, Ida|
|Alexander, Sir William||Brocklebank, C. E. R.||Courtauld, Major John Sewell|
|Allen, William (Stoke-on-Trent)||Brown, Ernest (Leith)||Craddock, Sir Reginald Henry|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.||Browne, Captain A. C.||Cranborne, Viscount|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Buchan, John||Craven-Ellis, William|
|Applin, Lieut.-Col. Reginald V. K.||Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T.||Crooke, J. Smedley|
|Apsley, Lord||Burgin, Dr. Edward Leslie||Crookshank, Capt. H. C. (Galnsb'ro)|
|Aske, Sir Robert William||Burnett, John Ge[...]ge||Croom-Johnson, R. P.|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Cadogan, Hon. Edward||Crossley, A. C.|
|Baillie, Sir Adrian W. M.||Campbell, Vice-Admiral G. (Burnley)||Culverwell, Cyrll Tom|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Campbell-Johnston, Malcolm||Dalkelth, Earl of|
|Balfour, Capt. Harold (I. of Thanet)||Caporn, Arthur Cecll||Davidson, Rt. Hon. J. C. C.|
|Balniel, Lord||Carver, Major William H.||Davles, Edward C. (Montgomery)|
|Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Cautley, Sir Henry S.||Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovll)|
|Barton, Capt. Basil Kelsey||Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)||Dawson, Sir Phillp|
|Beaumont, Hon. R.E.B. (Portsm'th, C.)||Chamberiain, Rt. Hn. Sir J. A. (Birm., W)||Denman, Hon. R. D.|
|Bennett, Capt. Sir Ernest Nathanlel||Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Edgbaston)||Denville, Alfred|
|Bernays, Robert||Chapman, Sir Samuel (Edinburgh, S.)||Despencer-Robertson, Major J. A. F.|
|Betterton, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry B.||Choriton, Alan Ernest Leofric||Dickie, John P.|
|Blindell, James||Clarke, Frank||Donner, P. W.|
|Boulton, W. W.||Clarry, Reginald George||Doran, Edward|
|Bowater, Col. Sir T. Vansittart||Clayton, Sir Christopher||Drewe, Cedric|
|Bower, Lleut.-Com. Robert Tatton||Cobh, Sir Cyril||Dugdale, Captain Thomas Lionel|
|Bowyer, Capt. Sir George E. W.||Colville, Lieut.-Colonel J.||Duggan, Hubert John|
|Duncan, James A. L.(Kensington, N.)||Leckie, J. A.||Remer, John R.|
|Eden, Robert Anthony||Leech, Dr. J. W.||Rhys, Hon. Charles Arthur U.|
|Edmondson, Major A. J.||Lees-Jones, John||Rickards, George William|
|Ellis, Sir R. Geoffrey||Lennox-Boyd, A. T.||Roberts, Aled (Wrexham)|
|Elliston, Captain George Sampson||Levy, Thomas||Ropner, Colonel L.|
|Elmley, Viscount||Liddell, Waiter S.||Rosbotham, Sir Thomas|
|Emrys-Evans, P. V.||Lindsay, Kenneth Martin (Kilm'rnock)||Ross, Ronald D.|
|Entwistle, Cyril Fullard||Little, Graham-, Sir Ernest||Ross Taylor, Walter (Woodbridge)|
|Erskine, Lord (Weston-super-Mare)||Liewellin, Major John J.||Runclman, Rt. Hon. Walter|
|Erskine-Bolst, Capt. C. C. (Blackpool)||Locker-Lampson, Rt. Hn. G. (Wd.Gr'n)||Runge, Norah Cecil|
|Evans, Capt. Arthur (Cardiff, S.)||Lockwood, John C. (Hackney, C.)||Russell, Albert (Kirkcaidy)|
|Evans, R. T. (Carmarthen)||Lockwood, Capt. J. H. (Shipley)||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)|
|Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst||Lumley, Captain Lawrence R.||Russell, Hamer Field (Sheffield, B'tside)|
|Flint, Abraham John||Lyons, Abraham Montagu||Rutherford, Sir John Hugo (Liverp'l)|
|Foot, Dingle (Dundee)||Mabane, William||Salt, Edward W.|
|Foot, Isaac (Cornwall, Bodmin)||MacAndrew, Lieut.-Col. C. G. (Partick)||Samuel, Sir Arthur Michael (F'nham)|
|Fracer, Captain Ian||MacAndrew, Capt. J. O. (Ayr)||Samuel, Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Darwen)|
|Fremantle, Sir Francis||McCorquodale, M. S.||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)|
|Galbraith, James Francis Wallace||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Seaham)||Sandeman, Sir A. N. Stewart|
|Gillett, Sir George Masterman||MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)||Savery, Samuel Servington|
|Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John||McEwen, Captain J. H. F.||Selley, Harry R.|
|Glossop, C. W. H||McKie, John Hamilton||Shakespeare, Geoffrey H.|
|Gluckstein, Louis Halle||Maclay, Hon. Joseph Paton||Shaw, Heien B. (Lanark, Bothwell)|
|Glyn, Major Sir Ralph G. C.||Macmillan, Maurice Harold||Shaw, Captain William T. (Forlar)|
|Goff, Sir Park||Macquisten, Frederick Alexander||Simon, Rt. Hon. Sir John|
|Gower, Sir Robert||Maltland, Adam||Skelton, Archlbald Noel|
|Graham, Sir F. Fergus (C'mb'rl'd, N.)||Makins, Brigadier-General Ernest||Smith, R. W. (Ab'rd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)|
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir Nicholas||Mallalieu, Edward Lancelot||Smithers, Waldron|
|Greene, William P. C.||Mander, Geoffrey le M.||Somervell, Sir Donald|
|Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John||Manningham-Buller, Lt.-Col. Sir M.||Somerville, Annesley A. (Windsor)|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middiesbro', W.)||Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Soper, Richard|
|Grimston, R. V.||Marsden, Commander Arthur||Southby, Commander Archlbald R. J.|
|Guest, Capt. Rt. Hon. F. E.||Martin, Thomas B.||Spears, Brigadier-General Edward L.|
|Guinness, Thomas L. E. B.||Mason, David M. (Edinburgh, E.)||Spencer, Captain Richard A.|
|Gunston, Captain D. W.||Mayhew, Lieut.-Colonel John||Spender-Clay, Rt. Hon. Herbert H.|
|Guy, J. C. Morrison||Mellor, Sir Richard James||Spens, William Patrick|
|Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.||Mills, Sir Frederick (Leyton, E.)||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Fylde)|
|Hamilton, Sir George (Ilford)||Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Stanley, Hon. O. F. G. (Westmorland)|
|Hamilton, Sir R. W. (Orkney & Zetl'nd)||Mitchell, Harold P. (Br'tf'd & Chisw'k)||Steel-Maltland, Rt. Hon. Sir Arthur|
|Hanbury, Cecll||Moore, Lt.-Col. Thomas C. R. (Ayr)||Storey, Samuel|
|Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Moreing, Adrian C.||Stourton, Hon. John J.|
|Harris, Sir Percy||Morgan, Robert H.||Strickland, Captain W. F.|
|Hartington, Marquess of||Morris, Owen Temple (Cardiff, E.)||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Hartland, George A.||Moss, Captain H. J.||Summersby, Charles H.|
|Harvey, George (Lambeth, Kenningt'n)||Muirhead, Lieut.-Colonel A. J.||Taylor, Vice-Admiral E. A. (P'dd'gt'n,S.)|
|Haslam, Henry (Horncastle)||Munro, Patrick||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)|
|Haslam, Sir John (Bolton)||Nall-Cain, Hon. Ronald||Thompson, Sir Luke|
|Hellgers, Captain F. F. A.||Nation, Brigadier-General J. J. H.||Thompson, Sir Frederick Charles|
|Hepworth, Joseph||Nicholson, Godfrey (Morpeth)||Todd, Capt. A. J. K. (B'wick-on-T.)|
|Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John Waller||Normand, Rt. Hon. Wllfrid||Todd, A. L. S. (Kingswlnford)|
|Holdsworth, Herbert||North, Edward T.||Train, John|
|Hope, Sydney (Chester, Stalybridge)||Nunn, William||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Horobin, Ian M.||O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Sir Hugh||Turton, Robert Hugh|
|Horsbrugh, Florence||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William G. A.||Wallace, John (Duntermilne)|
|Howltt, Dr. Alfred B.||Patrick, Colin M.||Ward, Lt.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)||Peake, Captain Osbert||Ward, Irene Mary Bewick (Wallsend)|
|Hudson, Robert Spear (Southport)||Pearson, William G.||Warrender, Sir Victor A. G.|
|Hume, Sir George Hopwood||Peat, Charles U.||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Hurst, Sir Gerald B.||Penny, Sir George||Watt, Captain George Steven H.|
|Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas W. H.||Perkins, Walter R. D.||Wedderburn, Henry James Scrymgeour|
|Jackson, Sir Henry (Wandsworth, C.)||Peters, Dr. Sidney John||Weymouth, Viscount|
|James, Wing-Com. A. W. H.||Petherick, M.||White, Henry Graham|
|Jamieson, Douglas||Peto, Geoffrey K. (W'verh'pt'n, Bilst'n)||Whyte, Jardine Bell|
|Janner, Barnett||Ptckford, Hon. Mary Ada||Williams, Charles (Devon, Torquay)|
|Jesson, Major Thomas E.||Powell, Lieut.-Col. Evelyn G. H.||Williams, Herbert G. (Croydon, S.)|
|Joel, Dudley J. Barnato||Procter, Major Henry Adam||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Johnston, J. W. (Clackmannan)||Pyhus, Sir Percy John||Wilson, G. H. A. (Cambridge U.)|
|Johnstone, Harcourt (S. Shields)||Ramsay, T. B. W. (Western Isles)||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George|
|Jones, Lewis (Swansea, West)||Ramsbotham, Herwald||Withers, Sir John James|
|Kerr, Lieut.-Col. Charles (Montrose)||Remsden, Sir Eugene||Wood, Sir Murdoch McKenzie (Banff)|
|Kerr, Hamilton W.||Ratcliffe, Arthur||Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton (S'v'noaks)|
|Knight, Holford||Rea, Walter Russell||Young, Ernest J. (Middlesbrough, E.)|
|Knox, Sir Alfred||Reed, Arthur C. (Exeter)|
|Lambert, Rt. Hon. George||Reid, James S. C. (Stirling)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Law, Sir Alfred||Reid, William Allan (Derby)||Mr. Womersley and Dr. Morris-Jones.|
|Adams, D. M. (Poplar, South)||Cape, Thomas||Edwards, Charles|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Cocks, Frederick Seymour||Greenwood, Rt. Hon. Arthur|
|Banfield, John William||Cove, William G.||Grenfell, David Rees (Glamorgan)|
|Batey, Joseph||Cripps, Sir Stafford||Grundy, Thomas W.|
|Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale)||Dagger, George||Hall, George H. (Merthyr Tydvil)|
|Brown, C. W. E. (Notts., Mansfield)||Davies, David L. (Pontypridd)||Hicks, Ernest George|
|Buchanan, George||Dobble, William||Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Silvertown)|
|Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Mainwaring, William Henry||Wallhead, Richard C.|
|Kirkwood, David||Maxton, James||Williams, David (Swansea, East)|
|Lawson, John James||Paling, Wilfred||Williams, Dr. John H. (Llanlly)|
|Leonard, William||Parkinson, John Allen||Wilmot, John|
|Logan, David Gilbert||Price, Gabriel|
|Lunn, William||Smith, Tom (Normanton)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|McEntee, Valentine L.||Thorne, William James||Mr. John and Mr. Groves.|
|Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)||Tinker, John joseph|
§ 5.35 p.m.
Earl of DALKEITH
I beg to move, in page 2, line 11, at the end, to insert:Children who have not attained the age of fourteen but who have been specially exempted from attendance at school owing to taking up insurable work, shall be regarded as subject to the provisions of Section one of this Act.This is a manuscript Amendment, and is brought forward on behalf of a local authority in my constituency as a useful addition to the Bill. I believe that the point arises only in Scotland. The total number of children so exempted last year was 2,923, but this total included all those who had reached the age of 14 but had not reached the prescribed age for leaving school. It was thought that if such children were left uncovered by the Bill there might be an incentive to dismiss them when they became insurable and to replace them by other children under the insurable age. Now that children are being brought into such a Bill as this the Amendment appears to carry on the principle of the Bill and seems to make it rather more complete. I apologise that the Amendment was not on the Order Paper, and I ask the right hon. Gentleman to give it consideration.
§ 5.38 p.m.
§ Mr. J. JONES
Evil grows by what it feeds on, and evidently this Amendment is proposed in order to make the Bill even worse than it is. The suggestion is that boys and girls who have not yet reached the age of 14 who may be employed in insurable occupations shall be taxed to the extent of 2d. per week without any provision for benefit. Does the Noble Lord who moved the Amendment really mean that? We have been trying for years to get the school age raised, and, instead of dealing with the problem of children in employment, we shall, by this Amendment, simply reduce the present low standard in connection with the entry of children into industry. In the industrial world men and women in hundreds of thousands are vainly seeking work, and we are now being asked to bring still younger children into industry. 74 If that is the mentality and the industrial outlook of some of those who represent constituencies in this country, God help us! We are getting into a worse state than we imagined we were in. In my constituency boys and girls from 14 years of age are lining up outside the factories looking for employment and they are not wanted. There is a surplus of young people looking for work, and yet we are now told we ought to reduce the age at which they can enter employment. That is what this Amendment means, and it is one of the most reactionary Amendments that has ever been moved. I want to protest against it on behalf of the younger people in my constituency and of the general body of workers in the country.
§ 5.41 p.m.
§ Mr. COVE
I have never met a more monstrous Amendment. We have, at the beginning of this Bill, an inquitous provision and a most reactionary state of affairs, but now the Noble Lord proposes that, in addition to children being allowed to leave school before 14 in order to be exploited in various ways, they shall come within the provisions of this Clause, and they shall pay twopence a week and have no insurance benefit. In this instance the children may be in areas where junior instruction centres have not been organised. This is a most monstrous suggestion, and I hope that the Minister has not got to the stage when he can accept an Amendment of this character.
§ 5.42 p.m.
§ Mr. LAWSON
This manuscript Amendment has been sprung upon the Committee, and very often in such a case there have been prior arrangements about it, but I hope the Minister is not going to yield to the proposal, because it really is, as my hon. Friend has stated, a monstrous proposal. The whole trend of thought in this country has been in the direction of favouring the raising of the school age. Indeed, the words in this Bill which make it possible for the child to pay the twopence and become insurable have been taken out of the Bill which 75 was intended to raise the school age to 15. Now an hon. Member wants to persuade the Committee to agree to the lowering of the age to 14. [HON. MEMBERS: "No."] That is what it means in effect. The House of Commons is being asked to assent to children working before they are 14. I hope that the Minister will not yield to the proposal. I would not have spoken but for the fact that I have seen manuscript Amendments sprung upon the Committee, and very often passed by arrangement.
§ 5.44 p.m.
Earl of DALKEITH
There is some misunderstanding about this Amendment. It applies to certain exemptions in Scotland, and was actually brought up by a local authority because they thought there was a risk of children under these exemptions being exploited. It is in order to prevent such exploitation that they asked for the Amendment to be moved.
§ 5.45 p.m.
§ Mr. MAXTON
I have had some little experience of the working of these exemptions in Scotland. The system in operation there was introduced a good many years ago to prevent the raising of the school age to 14 from bearing too harshly on the people, and to give a transitional period for the change-over. In my opinion, that transitional period has lasted long enough, and the time has come when not only should it receive no further statutory recognition, because that is what the Noble Lord is proposing, but when the statutory recognition should be withdrawn. I do not think any education committee in Scotland grants an exemption nowadays save in cases where there is desperate poverty in a home—that is, an exemption allowing one child to leave school under 14 years of age to become a wage-earner. In our view, that poverty problem should be met in some other way. I recall that the existence of this power of exemption in Scotland has been made an excuse by a previous Government for not endorsing certain agreements proposed by the League of Nations. They said they could not do so because there was not compulsory school attendance up to 14 years of age. I trust that the existence of this very objectionable practice in Scotland will 76 not be made a reason for encouraging the employment of children at 13 years of age at a time when, as the hon. Member for Silvertown (Mr. J. Jones) has pointed out, not only can boys and girls of 14 not get employment but people of all ages cannot get employment. I hope the Minister will consider the proposal of the Noble Lord seriously with a view to suggesting to his friend the Secretary of State for Scotland that the time has now arrived when these exemptions should be wiped out of the Scottish education system.
§ 5.49 p.m.
§ Sir H. BETTERTON
I received notice of this Amendment only just before luncheon, about 12.30 p.m., but, none the less, I have looked into it and endeavoured to inform myself of precisely what it would do if it were passed. I think I can at once set at rest the anxiety of the hon. Member for Chester-le-Street (Mr. Lawson) and the hon. Member for Silvertown (Mr. J. Jones) by saying that even if the Amendment were accepted it would not apply to England. It could apply only to Scotland, because there exemption has been granted in a limited number of cases; but the system has not been recognised in England at all. Quite frankly, I am not prepared to accept the Amendment. To do so would be distinctly a retrograde step, and it might also cause further difficulties in a direction indicated by the hon. Member for Bridgeton (Mr. Maxton) in his reference to international affairs. From every point of view it is not an Amendment that I can fairly commend to the Committee as one which is worthy either in its principle or in its application.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ 5.50 p.m.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
I beg to move, in page 2, line 14, to leave out from "shall," to the end of the Sub-section, and to insert:credit any persons who after attaining the age at which under the law for the time being in force their parents cease to be under an obligation to cause them to receive efficient elementary instruction have continued to receive whole-time education with the number of contributions equal to the number of weeks that they have continued to receive whole-time education.77 The effect of this Amendment would be that children attending school from 14 to 16 years of age would have insurance stamps credited to them free for that period. Under the Bill children who have attended school will, on leaving at the age of 16, be credited with a maximum number of 20 stamps and, therefore, they will have to get another 10 stamps added in order to qualify for benefit. Under our proposal a child attending school between 14 and 16 years of age would be credited with a stamp for every week, so that if on leaving school at 16 it could not get employment it would automatically receive benefit. It was said by the Minister in an earlier reply that it would be reactionary or degrading for a child below the age of 16 to receive benefit, but curely he will not say that this proposal to credit a child with a stamp for every week that it attends school, thereby allowing the child to qualify for benefit at the age of 16 is in any way degrading. It has been said by the Minister and by the Parliamentary Secretary that they are anxious that every child who cannot get work should remain at school, and if they are genuinely anxious on that point here is a proposal which will be an incentive to keeping children at school.
§ 5.55 p.m.
§ Mr. COVE
It is extremely difficult to give adequate discussion to these various Amendments with the Guillotine in operation, and, therefore, I will be as brief as possible in supporting this Amendment. I understand that the provision in the Bill was inserted because of a desire to induce children to remain at school, and if there is anything good about this part of the Bill I think we may say that that might prove to be a useful feature. But I believe that the effect of the Measure, so far as inducing parents to allow their children to remain at school is concerned, has been greatly exaggerated. When parents are deciding whether a child of 14 shall remain at school or go to work I do not think they will be greatly influenced in favour of school by this consideration.
I would like the Parliamentary Secretary to explain to us how the provision in the Bill as it stands is going to operate. We have to turn to the Schedule for the details. It is stated that a child who remains at school for 12 months or more shall obtain a certain number of 78 stamps. Am I not right in assuming that a child who remains only 11 months will not get any stamps? There are further provisions as to 18 months or more and 24 months. In the same way as I have just indicated, a child who stays a little less than 18 months will not get the benefit of 15 stamps; and so on. I cannot yet understand—and I am putting this question quite sincerely—how every child who remains at school for the 24 months can get the 20 stamps as provided by the Bill, because legally the school-leaving age is not 14 but 14 plus—they leave at the end of the term. The school-leaving age of a child may in that way be 14 years and three months, and such child could not complete a period of two years before reaching 16 years of age and thus establish a claim to 20 stamps. If I am correct in that assumption, this provision will not operate in the case of a number of children. If the Minister really means the Bill to be of service in keeping children at school, it seems to me that a shorter period than a year should serve as a qualifying period. Twelve months is far too long; after the 12 months there is a jump to 18 months and then to 24 months. If the Amendment cannot be accepted I ask the Minister to consider seriously whether he cannot make the periods much shorter, and thus make the provision more effective.
§ 5.58 p.m.
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
The effect of this Amendment, as I see it, would be that a young person would be entitled to walk out of school straight into unemployment benefit. I think that represents substantially what the hon. Member for Gorbals (Mr. Buchanan) wants.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
Yes—at 16. The point is that a child who has attended school from 14 to 16 and leaves school at 16 ought, if it cannot get employment, to have unemployment benefit in the same way as a child who has worked from 14 to 16 would be able to get benefit at 16 if thrown out of work. We cannot see why there should be any discrimination in favour of work as against school.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
I was assuming that the date for commencing to receive benefit was left unaltered; but the definite point I was raising was that this 79 Amendment would make a big change. A young person could walk out of school into unemployment benefit.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
No, I regret to say I did not, because there was not any insurance system in existence at that time. When I left school my outstanding merits were recognised, and I walked into employment. The remuneration was a very modest one, only one penny per hour. The last time it was proposed to reduce the age of employment insurance to 14 with benefit at—I think I am right—the end of 26 weeks, that was a most unpopular proposal among the general mass of the manual workers throughout the country. On moral grounds they strongly disapproved. I am quite satisfied that that is still the view.
On moral grounds it is apparently the case that the bulk of hon. Members on the Opposition benches do not to-day represent, and never have represented, working-class opinion. The average manual worker has never in the slightest degree sympathised with many of the views commonly expressed by the bulk of hon. Gentlemen opposite. I am satisfied that, on moral grounds, 90 parents out of 100 would strongly object to a system whereby children who had never worked in ordinary income-earning occupations, as distinct from school, and had never in their lives had a job as is normally understood, should be entitled to go on to unemployment pay. In making this point I am not thinking in the slightest of what the proposal would involve financially. I am not concerned with what it would cost, but only with the moral point of view. It would be thoroughly bad and demoralising to instil into the minds of the young people of this country that they could, without ever having entered any form of industry, be regarded as unemployed persons entitled to draw money towards which they have not contributed a penny piece. I hope that the Minister will reject this Amendment without any hesitation.
§ 6.3 p.m.
§ Mr. MACMILLAN
I understand that in this system of crediting no cash passes at all as regards the finances of the scheme. If I am right, in connection with the First Schedule on page 56, no account 80 is taken of the crediting of contributions, and any increase of these credits is a direct, charge upon the fund, and can only be at the expense of the other beneficiaries of the fund. This crediting system is not as generous as it looks on the surface. Instead of the State paying, as you might think, 6d. in respect of the five or 10 weeks, nobody pays anything at all. Therefore every week that is credited to these children is a direct charge upon the fund, and pro tanto upon every potential beneficiary of the fund.
It would be out of order to suggest that the State should make some direct contribution in respect of the credits for the children who are at school, because that would be to impose a charge, and I am not able to suggest that. All that the Committee has to decide is to what extent it is fair and reasonable, in rspect of children who remain at school, that a charge should be made upon the other potential beneficiaries of the fund. Some compromise might be made between the Amendment and the Schedule as at present drawn. The Amendment would certainly go too far by crediting too many contributions, but the Schedule might, perhaps, with wisdom, be extended. I hope that the Parliamentary Secretary when replying will be able to say that he will consider at a later stage whether the maximum number of contributions to be credited should be slightly extended; without going as far as is suggested in the Amendment.
§ 6.5 p.m.
§ Mr. MAXTON
It is always interesting to hear the hon. Member for South Croydon (Mr. H. Williams) delivering dissertations upon morals. We know how very keenly he feels cal these matters, but I do not know that the Committee stage of the Unemployment Insurance Bill gives him the scope that his knowledge of the subject entitles him to have. I look forward to his bringing forward and publishing sometime in the future a magnum opus on the subject. I remember Locke on "The Human Understanding" in my student days; I hope the hon. Member's work may stand alongside that on our bookshelves as "Williams on Morals." It is perhaps true that hon. Members on this side have not always been able to voice the moral 81 outlook of the working class. It is a difficult task fully to represent the moral outlook of the working class. The working-class moral sense is revolted at the idea of policemen coming under the benefits of unemployment insurance. The ordinary member of the manual-working class does not regard a policeman as a worker. He is revolted at the idea of soldiers and sailors walking out of these public services into unemployment insurance, because, again, he does not regard them as being part of the industrial workers. Parliament in its wisdom has overborne the moral repugnance of the working class to these persons being included in unemployment insurance. When the hon. Member raises morals as the issue, his statement is that the working class will stand for school-children between the ages of 14 and 16 being credited with 20 contributions, but experience complete revulsion of feeling if the children are credited with 30 contributions. That seems to be a very fragile foundation for the moral outlook of the nation.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
I appreciate the action of the hon. Member for Bridgeton (Mr. Maxton) in taking this line. Does he not think that the difference between paying nothing and paying 10 contributions sounds very different from the difference between paying 20 and paying 30? My point was that, under the Bill, children might be in benefit after they had paid contributions for 10 weeks; under his proposal they get benefit after no contributions. There is a big difference between nothing and 10.
§ Mr. MAXTON
There is one-and-eightpence worth of difference. The total cash value of the moral problem with which our souls are wrestling at the moment is 1s. 8d. This dragging in of the moral issue is scarcely necessary. I do not imagine that the Minister will have any serious difficulty in resisting the Amendment, but bringing in the moral issue at this stage, when it might be brought in much more strongly at some subsequent stage, is firing away your big ammunition in a profligate fashion. The case which was put by the hon. Member for Gorbals, and which I am supporting very strongly, is that when the child walks out of school at 16 years of age, after having received 82 the best education that we are capable of giving him, he should if we are incapable of finding him a niche in our national industrial life, be entitled to walk into the very miserable sum of unemployment insurance benefit that is payable under the existing legislation to a youth of that age. It is our incapacity that is really under review, if we are incapable of finding a useful niche for this young man or woman, whom we have educated to the best of our ability up to 16 years of age.
If the child manages to get some job, however stupid or futile, that displaces an older experienced worker—[Interruption]—and as the hon. Member for Merthyr (Mr. Wallhead) says, if he does his own father out of a job, he is credited with the appropriate number of stamps, and at 16 years is entitled to benefit, but if he goes into our educational system, which most hon. Members think is the best educational system, and comes out at 16 years of age to face life with absolutely no income, or with continued dependence upon parents who are probably unable to support him adequately, we make no provision for him, although to all intents and purposes he is a grown man with the needs of a man. That is the assumption underlying the opposition to this Amendment. The argument of the hon. Member for Gorbals and of myself is that full unemployment insurance benefit should be available for the child on the day upon which his education ceases.
§ 6.13 p.m.
I do not know whether the Minister will accept this Amendment, but I am sure that, from the moral point of view, the best that the State could do would be to encourage children to stay at school until 16 years of age. Do I understand that the Amendment proposes that when children come out of school at 16 they come into full benefit?
I do not think that I agree with that, but everything that the Government can do to encourage children to stay at school until 16 years of age will be for the moral benefit of the State as a whole. If the Parliamentary Secretary cannot accept the whole of this, can he assure us that every 83 encouragement possible will be given to children to stay at school until 16 years of age? No matter what the hon. Member for South Croydon (Mr. H. Williams) says about the moral outlook, everybody who is interested in juveniles knows that sooner or later the State will have to encourage children to stop on from 14 to 16 years of age.
§ 6.14 p.m.
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of LABOUR (Mr. R. S. Hudson)
I am afraid that the Government cannot accept this Amendment.
§ Mr. HUDSON
I might perhaps begin by replying to the point made by the hon. Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove). He is quite right. If the child remains at school only for 11 months, under the existing terms of the Schedule no contribution will be credited to him. Between now and the time when we get this Bill passed, if the hon. Member cares to have a word with the Minister or myself we shall be very glad to consider whether any alteration can be made. The hon. Member for Stockton-on-Tees (Mr. Macmillan) was equally right in saying that this crediting of contributions is purely a paper transaction. But it imposes a very definite liability against the day when the child subsequently becomes unemployed after the age of 16.
As regards the question of the number of contributions to be credited, it appears to us on broad grounds to be undesirable that a child should be in the position of leaving school and going straight away to an Employment Exchange to draw benefit, but that, before he actually draws benefit in his own right, he ought to have a certain number of weeks of actual employment in a factory or workshop. If that be admitted, we are governed by the limit of 30 contributions, and obviously the number that can be credited must be something less than 30. We came to the conclusion that on the whole it would be reasonable to suggest that there should be an interval of 10 weeks before the child becomes entitled to draw benefit. That leads us to the figure of 20, and we divided that up over the two years between 14 and 16. That is how 84 we reach the figure of 10 for the first 12 months, 15 for the first 18 months, and 20 for the full two years. My hon. Friend the Member for Stockton will realise, therefore, that, much as we might like to alter the figures in the Schedule, we have not really any margin to play with, because we are governed by the 30 weeks rule for the receipt of benefit, and the number credited to a child must be substantially below 30.
§ 6.17 p.m.
§ Mr. ANEURIN BEVAN
I do not know that the Committee will agree that the Parliamentary Secretary has made a satisfactory reply to my hon. Friends. It seems to me to be a resonable proposition that a principle which has been accepted in unemployment insurance should be carried into this proposal. If a child's parent is unemployed, he receives compensation in respect of the child up to the age of 16. When the child reaches the age of 16, that compensation ceases; it is assumed that at that age the child becomes an adult. If it be said that the unemployed parent is not entitled to receive any payment in respect of a child over the age of 16, surely that carries with it the implication that the child ought to receive something in his own right. Indeed, at the present time, under some Poor Law authorities in Great Britain, an unemployed child at 16 years of age receives certain payments in his own right. Consequently, I cannot follow the reasons given by the hon. Gentleman. In the first place there is the argument, to which he has not replied, that it is desirable to keep these children at school as long as possible if they cannot get employment. If the parents have to be bribed to do that, if the child has to be bribed to do that, the higher the bribe the greater the response will be, and, if there is no employment for the child in the industrial system, it is desirable that that should be done.
I do not quite see how this is going to affect the proposal for the training of children between the ages of 14 and 16. It is provided in another part of the Bill that children shall pass into a special system of training if they cannot find employment. Do I gather that in those cases they will be credited with the contributions, or do I understand that, if it is impossible to construct training centres for all children in those areas where there are children who will be idle, they 85 are to be encouraged by a provision of this kind to remain in the educational system? It seems to me that the Minister has not answered that point, and he certainly has not dealt with the other question—if a child on reaching the age of 16 cannot obtain employment and has no means of income, to whom will that child then become chargeable? [HON. MEMBERS: "That is Part II.] That is the point to which I am coming. We understand, then, that the principle is admitted—the principle against which arguments have been put forward by the hon. Member for South Croydon (Mr. H. Williams) and by the Noble Lady the Member for the Sutton Division of Plymouth (Viscountess Astor). They object to the child becoming a recipient of benefit——
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
Of unemployment benefit as of right. Other forms of benefit are now based on circumstances of need.
§ Mr. BEVAN
The moral argument is now given a strange twist, and my hon. Friend seems to have lost his way in the labyrinths of this new morality. I understand that it would be considered demoralising for the child if the child were given to understand that he receives insurance benefit at the age of 16 as a reward for having attended school, but that it would not demoralise the child to receive transitional payments having done nothing at all for them.
§ Mr. BEVAN
That is over the age of 16. It is certainly true that the resources of the householder will then be taken into account, but the Bill admits the principle that the adults in the household who are earning wages must have some allowance made for them before their income can be thrown into the household assessment.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
The hon. Member knows that under the Act an adult person's benefit can only be taken away from him if misconduct or bad character is proved; it cannot be taken away from a child of 16 merely because the child has left school. The right of the recipient can only be taken away if there is proved against the parent something which is morally wrong.
§ Mr. BEVAN
We have got ourselves into a most complicated position. On the one hand the Bill throws out the child at 16 as no longer actuarially dependent on the parent, by withdrawing the 2s. from the unemployed father, leaving the child with no provision at all under the insurance system, and yet in another part accepts the obligation to regard that child as an adult, as a recipient of unemployment assistance. Surely, that exposes grave inconsistencies in our legislation. Would it not be much more desirable to cut out the inconsistency at once by accepting this Amendment, rather than merely resisting it because it has been moved from this side of the Committee? Will not the Government recognise that the case has been made out, and allow children, if they remain at school until 16 and cannot then be employed, to receive unemployment benefit on the approved scale immediately, as a reward for having attended school? That seems to me to be much the more desirable course of conduct, and I would press the Minister, if he cannot accept the Amendment now, to consider before the Report stage the very cogent arguments which my friends have advanced, and see whether he cannot accept an Amendment to give effect to our intentions.
§ 6.25 p.m.
§ Mr. KENNETH LINDSAY
The hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. A. Bevan) has introduced another irrelevance, namely, the question of this being compensation for keeping children at school. It may be that the first irrelevancy was introduced on this side, but what the hon. Member for South Croydon (Mr. H. Williams) calls morals the Parliamentary Secretary calls broad policy, and therefore I think the less we say about the actual words the better. The main point is that in this scheme you have to make a purely arbitrary arrangement. As I understand it, it seems good to the Parliamentary Secretary and those who have drafted the Bill that there should be an interval of 10 weeks, but that is purely arbitrary—there is no morality about the whole thing. It is not, as I understand it, compensation for remaining at school, but is a purely arbitrary arrangement, because on broad lines of policy it seems, as I understand it—I may be wrong—a bad thing that a child should go straight from school into insurance. Personally, I would rather see the school age raised, 87 and I make no complaint about that, but, if we are going to have these arbitrary arrangements, I think it is reasonable to assume that there is a better prospect of work for a child who has remained at school till the age of 16. At the present moment there happens to be a shortage of unemployment between the ages of 14 and 16, but things may be very different in 18 months' time, when there may be a big problem. I understand from the Parliamentary Secretary that he is basing his computation on a considerable increase in unemployment between the ages of 14 and 16 when the "bulge" comes during the next two or three years.
If this were in any sense a compensation for keeping a child at school between the ages of 14 and 16, my attitude towards it would immediately change, but in fact it is a purely arbitrary arrangement, as most of these insurance arrangements are. From beginning to end they are not really insurance at all. You cannot insure against unemployment in the real sense of the word. Everyone knows that. [HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear!"] It seems to me to be completely illogical that hon. Members opposite, while they are in such complete accord with me on that point, should stand up and give other reasons for this arrangement. This question will come up time after time during the passage of the Bill. If we leave out the question of morality—and I am quite content to do that—let us also leave out wrong reasons for making perfectly ordinary arrangements under unemployment insurance which will roughly make it balance. The hon. Member for South Croydon and other hon. Members on this side may say that it is bad for a person to walk out of school and take unemployment insurance benefit as a right, but nobody would deny that, whether under the Board or under a public assistance committee, if need is going to be assessed, that person should receive some payment, and personally I and others would be in favour of that. There is, however, a difference if you are going to accept the principle of insurance. If you do not accept the principle of insurance, there is no difference between right and need, and there is no point in discussing whether we should have a board and unemployment insurance. If we are 88 going to agree to the principle—which we never discussed on the Second Reading of the Bill—of the difference between insurance and need, which is the basis of the whole thing, let us follow it out and be logical through the details as we go along.
§ 6.29 p.m.
§ Mr. COVE
There again is a typical attitude on the part of a National Labour Member. For what purpose would the hon. Member change his mind if not to walk into the Lobby with us? If he will look closely at the Amendment, he will find that it provides compensation for children who remain at school. It says that, if a child remains at school beyond the legal age, there shall be credited to such child the number of stamps provided in the first Schedule. I would ask the hon. Member to stick to his guns and his principles, and walk into the Lobby with us.
§ 6.30 p.m.
§ Mr. O'CONNOR
It seems to me that my right hon. Friend is entirely right in resisting the Amendment, and I congratulate him, because he has discerned that this is the first torpedo at the whole structure of the Bill. The argument, which is a very attractive one, of the hon. Member for Bridgeton (Mr. Maxton) and the hon. Member for Gorbals (Mr. Buchanan) really rests upon confusing relief with insurance. What the Minister has done in the provision that he has made in the Clause is really a stretching of the fund itself by bringing upon it people who have been kept at continuation schools, and the fact that hon. Members below the Gangway are now seeking to use that as an argument for including children, shows that they are trying to do the very thing that the Bill is seeking to undo—the confusion of relief and insurance.
§ 6.32 p.m.
§ Mr. J. JONES
I am delighted to hear the great moral altitude of this Debate. 89 We have heard a number of times about the infamy of allowing children to go straight from school to the Employment Exchange to get 2s. a week. I wonder if those who advance this argument have considered some of the things that we know about—how people go straight from school to do a cruise round the world, live on the fat of the land at other people's expense and come back to complete their education by slave-driving the people who make it possible for them to go on these cruises. We have been told about the terrible things that will happen to insurance. The people who are talking most about the inequalities of insurance are the people who have benefited by the insurances that the workers have paid for.
You are going to give a premium to the worst kind of employers by denying to these children the opportunity of benefiting by insurance. In factories in the Silvertown area men and women of 30 and 40 years of age are being discharged and young boys and girls are taken into their places at half the money that the men and women used to earn. If no provision is made in the matter of these children of 16 in the interval between leaving school and getting employment, they will be used still further to reduce the standard of living and the wages of the ordinary adult worker. All that we are asking for is that we shall be given, not all we want but just enough to ease the situation, and not make the child the enemy of its father, its brother or its sister, because that is the economic effect of the position now. If you are not prepared to make this concession, you are simply making the position worse, and wages will be docked all along the line by the competition between family and family.
§ 6.35 p.m.
§ Major OWEN
I notice that Sub-section (3) says,who, after attaining the age at which under the law for the time being in force their parents cease to be under an obligation to cause them to receive efficient elementary instruction.What is the position of those authorities which have adopted a school-leaving age of 15? The ratepayers in my county are already making provision for the education of boys and girls up to 15. Is the right hon. Gentleman prepared to accept that 12 months as being equivalent to 12 months' employment? I can quite understand where voluntary attendance at school may only account for a certain amount, but in the case of these educational authorities—they are very few—would it not be possible to make some sort of concession?
§ The DEPUTY-CHAIRMAN (Captain Bourne)
I think the point that the hon. and gallant Gentleman wishes to make should come either on the Question, "That the Clause stand part," or on the Schedule, because neither under this Amendment nor under the Clause as drafted is there any provision made for it, and the Amendment, if carried, would not alter the situation under the Bill.
§ The DEPUTY-CHAIRMAN
Perhaps the hon. and gallant Gentleman will make his remarks on the next Amendment.
§ Question put, "That the words proposed to be left out, to the word 'at,' in line 17, stand part of the Clause."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 286; Noes, 67.93
|Division No. 68.]||AYES.||[6.37 p.m.|
|Adams, Samuel Vyvyan T. (Leeds, W.)||Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T.|
|Agnew, Lieut.-Com. P. G.||Barrie, Sir Charles Coupar||Burghley, Lord|
|Alnsworth, Lieut.-Colonel Charles||Barton, Capt. Basil Kelsey||Burnett, John George|
|Albery, Irvine James||Beaumont, Hon. R.E.B. (Portsm'th, C.)||Cadogan, Hon. Edward|
|Alexander, Sir William||Betterton, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry B.||Campbell, Vice-Admiral G. (Burnley)|
|Allen, William (Stoke-on-Trent)||Blindell, James||Campbell-Johnston, Malcolm|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.||Boulton, W. W.||Caporn, Arthur Cecil|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Bowater, Col. Sir T. Vansittart||Carver, Major William H.|
|Apsley, Lord||Bower, Lieut.-Com. Robert Tatton||Cayzer, Maj. Sir H. R. (Prtsmth., S.)|
|Aske, Sir Robert William||Bowyer, Capt. Sir George E. W.||Gazalet, Thelma (Islington. E.)|
|Astbury, Lieut.-Com. Frederick Wolfe||Bracken, Brendan||Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. Sir J.A. (Birm., W.)|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Braithwaite, J. G. (Hillsborough)||Chapman, Sir Samuel (Edinburgh, S.)|
|Baillie, Sir Adrian W. M.||Brass, Captain Sir William||Choriton, Alan Ernest Leofric|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Broadbent, Colonel John||Clarke, Frank|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Brocklebank, C. E. R.||Clayton, Sir Christopher|
|Balfour, Capt. Harold (I. of Thanet)||Brown, Ernest (Leith)||Cobb, Sir Cyril|
|Banks, Sir Reginald Mitchell||Browne, Captain A. C.||Colville, Lieut.-Colonel J.|
|Conant, R. J. E.||Jackson, Sir Henry (Wandsworth, C.)||Ramsden, Sir Eugene|
|Cook, Thomas A.||James, Wing-Com. A. W. H.||Ratcliffe, Arthur|
|Cooke, Douglas||Jamieson, Douglas||Reed, Arthur C. (Exeter)|
|Cooper, A. Duff||Jesson, Major Thomas E.||Reid, James S. C. (Stirling)|
|Copeland, Ida||Joel, Dudley J. Barnato||Reid, William Allan (Derby)|
|Craddock, Sir Reginald Henry||Jones, Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton)||Remer, John R.|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Jones, Lewis (Swansea, West)||Rhys, Hon. Charles Arthur U.|
|Craven-Ellis, William||Kerr, Lieut.-Col. Charles (Montrose)||Rickards, George William|
|Crooke, J. Smedley||Kerr, Hamilton W.||Ropner, Colonel L.|
|Crookshank, Capt. H. C. (Gainsb'ro)||Knight, Holtord||Rosbotham, Sir Thomas|
|Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Knox, Sir Alfred||Roan Taylor, Walter (Woodbridge)|
|Crossley, A. C.||Lambert, Rt. Hon. George||Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter|
|Cruddas, Lieut.-Colonel Bernard||Law, Sir Alfred||Runge, Norah Cecil|
|Culverwell, Cyril Tom||Leckie, J. A.||Russell, Albert (Kirkcaldy)|
|Dalkeith, Earl of||Leech, Dr. J. W.||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)|
|Davidson, Rt. Hon. J. C. C.||Levy, Thomas||Russell, Hamer Field (Sheffield, B'tside)|
|Davies, Edward C. (Montgomery)||Liddall, Walter S.||Rutherford, Sir John Hugo (Liverp'l)|
|Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil)||Lindsay, Kenneth Martin (Kilm'rnock)||Salt, Edward W.|
|Dawson, Sir Philip||Little, Graham-, Sir Ernest||Samuel, Sir Arthur Michael (F'nham)|
|Denman, Hon. R. D.||Llewellin, Major John J.||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)|
|Denville, Alfred||Lockwood, Capt. J. H. (Shipley)||Sandeman, Sir A. N. Stewart|
|Despencer-Robertson, Major J. A. F.||Lumley, Captain Lawrence R.||Savery, Samuel Servington|
|Dickie, John P.||Lyons, Abraham Montagu||Selley, Harry R.|
|Donner, P. W.||Mabane, William||Shakespeare, Geoffrey H.|
|Drewe, Cedric||MacAndrew, Lieut.-Col. C. G. (Partick)||Shaw, Helen B. (Lanark, Bothwell)|
|Dugdale, Captain Thomas Lionel||MacAndrew, Capt. J. O. (Ayr)||Shaw, Captain William T. (Forfar)|
|Duggan, Hubert John||McCorquodale, M. S.||Smith, R. W. (Ab'rd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)|
|Duncan, James A. L. (Kensington, N.)||MacDonald, Rt. Hn. J. R. (Seaham)||Smithers, Waldron|
|Eales, John Frederick||MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)||Somervell, Sir Donald|
|Eastwood, John Francis||McEwen, Captain J. H. F.||Soper, Richard|
|Eden, Robert Anthony||McKie, John Hamilton||Sotheron-Estcourt, Captain T. E.|
|Edmondson, Major A. J.||Maclay, Hon. Joseph Paton||Southby, Commander Archibald [...]. J.|
|Ellis, Sir R. Geoffrey||McLean, Dr. W. H. (Tradeston)||Spears, Brigadier-General Edward L.|
|Elmley, Viscount||Macmillan, Maurice Harold||Spencer, Captain Richard A.|
|Emrys-Evans, P. V.||Macquisten, Frederick Alexander||Spender-Clay, Rt. Hon. Herbert H.|
|Entwistle, Cyril Fullard||Maitland, Adam||Spens, William Patrick|
|Erskine, Lord (Weston-super-Mare)||Makins, Brigadier-General Ernest||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Fylde)|
|Erskine-Bolst, Capt. C. C. (Blackpool)||Manningham-Buller, Lt.-Col. Sir M.||Stanley, Hon. O. F. C. (Westmorland)|
|Evans, Capt. Arthur (Cardiff, S.)||Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Steel-Maitland, Rt. Hon. Sir Arthur|
|Everard, W. Lindsay||Marsden, Commander Arthur||Storey, Samuel|
|Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst||Martin, Thomas B.||Stourton, Hon. John J.|
|Fox, Sir Gifford||Mayhew, Lieut.-Colonel John||Strickland, Captain W. F.|
|Fraser, Captain Ian||Meller, Sir Richard James||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Fremantle, Sir Francis||Mills, Sir Frederick (Leyton, E.)||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton-|
|Gibson, Charles Granville||Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Summersby, Charles H.|
|Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John||Mitchell, Harold P. (Br'tf'd & Chlsw'k)||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)|
|Glossop, C. W. H.||Monsell, Rt. Hon. Sir B. Eyres||Thomas, James P. L. (Hereford)|
|Gluckstein, Louis Halle||Moore, Lt.-Col. Thomas C. R. (Ayr)||Thompson, Sir Luke|
|Glyn, Major Sir Ralph G. C.||Moreing, Adrian C.||Thomson, Sir Frederick Charles|
|Goff, Sir Park||Morgan, Robert H.||Todd, Capt. A. J. K. (B'wick-on-T.)|
|Gower, Sir Robert||Morris, Owen Temple (Cardiff, E.)||Todd, A. L. S. (Kingswinford)|
|Graham, Sir F. Fergus (C'mb'ri'd, N.)||Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh)||Touche, Gordon Cosmo|
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir Nicholas||Morrison, William Shephard||Train, John|
|Greene, William P. C.||Moss, Captain H. J.||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John||Mulrhead, Lieut.-Colonel A. J.||Turton, Robert Hugh|
|Grimston, R. V.||Munro, Patrick||Wallace, John (Dunfermline)|
|Guinness, Thomas L. E. B.||Nation, Brigadier-General J. J. H.||Ward, Lt.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Gunston, Captain D. W.||Nicholson, Godfrey (Morpeth)||Ward, Irene Mary Bewick (Wallsend)|
|Guy, J. C. Morrison||Normand, Rt. Hon. Wilfrid||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir John S.|
|Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.||North, Edward T.||Warrender, Sir Victor A. G.|
|Hall, Capt. W. D'Arcy (Brecon)||Nunn, William||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Hamilton, Sir George (Ilford)||O'Connor, Terence James||Watt, Captain George Steven H.|
|Hammersley, Samuel S.||O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Sir Hugh||Wedderburn, Henry James Scrymgeour|
|Hanbury, Cecil||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William G. A.||Wells, Sydney Richard|
|Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Patrick, Colin M.||Weymouth, Viscount|
|Hartland, George A.||Peaks, Captain Osbert||Whyte, Jardine Bell|
|Haslam, Henry (Horncastle)||Pearson, William G.||Williams, Charles (Devon, Torquay)|
|Haslam, Sir John (Bolton)||Peat, Charles U.||Williams, Herbert G. (Croydon, S.)|
|Hellgers, Captain F. F. A.||Percy, Lord Eustace||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Hepworth, Joseph||Perkins, Walter R. D.||Wilson, G. H. A. (Cambridge U.)|
|Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John Waller||Peters, Dr. Sidney John||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George|
|Hope, Capt. Hon. A. O. J. (Aston)||Petherick, M.||Wise, Alfred R.|
|Hope, Sydney (Chester, Stalybridge)||Peto, Geoffrey K. (W'verh'pt'n, Bilston)||Withers, Sir John James|
|Hornby, Frank||Pickford, Hon. Mary Ada||Womersley, Walter James|
|Horobin, Ian M.||Powell, Lieut.-Col. Evelyn G. H.||Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton (S'v'noaks)|
|Horsbrugh, Florence||Pownall, Sir Assheton|
|Howitt, Dr. Alfred B.||Procter, Major Henry Adam||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Hudson, Robert Spear (Southport)||Pybus, Sir Percy John||Sir George Penny and Captain|
|Hurst, Sir Gerald B.||Ramsay, T. B. W. (Western Isles)||Austin Hudson.|
|Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas W. H.||Ramsbotham, Herwald|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir Francis Dyke||Banfield, John William||Brown, C. W. E. (Notts., Mansfield)|
|Adams, D. M. (Poplar, South)||Batey, Joseph||Cape, Thomas|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Brlant, Frank||Cocks, Frederick Seymour|
|Cove, William G.||Jenkins, Sir William||Parkinson, John Allen|
|Cripps, Sir Stafford||John, William||Price, Gabriel|
|Dagger, George||Johnstone, Harcourt (S. Shields)||Rea, Walter Russell|
|Davies, David L. (Pontypridd)||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Roberts, Aled (Wrexham)|
|Dobbie, William||Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Silvertown)||Salter, Dr. Alfred|
|Edwards, Charles||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Samuel, Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Derwen)|
|Evans, David Owen (Cardigan)||Kirkwood, David||Smith, Tom (Normanton)|
|Evans, R. T. (Carmarthen)||Lawson, John James||Thorne, William James|
|Foot, Dingle (Dundee)||Leonard, William||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Foot, Isaac (Cornwall, Bodmin)||Logan, David Gilbert||Wellhead, Richard C.|
|Graham, D. M. (Lanark, Hamilton)||Lunn, William||White, Henry Graham|
|Greenwood, Rt. Hon. Arthur||McEntee, Valentine L.||Williams, David (Swansea, East)|
|Grenfell, David Rees (Glamorgan)||Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)||Williams, Dr. John H. (Llanelly)|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro', W.)||Mainwaring, William Henry||Wilmot, John|
|Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Mallalieu, Edward Lancelot||Wood, Sir Murdoch McKenzie (Banff)|
|Groves, Thomas E.||Mender, Geoffrey le M.||Young, Ernest J. (Middlesbrough, E.)|
|Grundy, Thomas W.||Mason, David M. (Edinburgh, E.)|
|Hall, George H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Maxton, James||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Harris, Sir Percy||Milner, Major James||Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Aneurin|
|Hicks, Ernest George||Owen, Major Goronwy||Bevan.|
|Janner, Barnett||Paling, Wilfred|
§ 6.48 p.m.
§ Mr. MORGAN
I beg to move, in page 2, line 17, to leave out from "age" to "have," in line 20, and to insert "of fourteen."
This Amendment, which stands in my name and that of the hon. and gallant Member for St. Helens (Captain Spencer), is decidedly a friendly Amendment, and simply provides that children in areas where the by-laws already make the school-leaving age 15 shall come within the ambit of the Bill. There is another section. As the Committee are probably aware, there are a number of children who have to attend special schools until the age of 16. As I read Sub-section (3) these two classes of children do not seem to be definitely included, but if my right hon. Friend the Minister can give us an assurance that these classes are covered, I shall be very glad to withdraw the Amendment.
§ 6.49 p.m.
§ Major OWEN
On this Amendment I want to add a few words to what I have already said on the same lines on behalf of the county which I represent where the school-leaving age has already been raised to 15. I suggest to His Majesty's Government that if some special provision is made in the case of education authorities which have already adopted the school-leaving age of 15 other education authorities may be persuaded to follow their example, and, without any legislation of any kind, we might get the school-leaving age raised throughout the country—a very desirable thing. It might indirectly be achieved if the right hon. Gentleman would give some kind of concession to boys and girls who are compelled under the by-laws to remain at school until they attain the age of 17.
§ 6.50 p.m.
§ Sir H. BETTERTON
In answer to what has been said by my hon. Friend the Member for Stourbridge (Mr. Morgan) and the hon. Member for Carnarvonshire (Major Owen), I say definitely that it is the intention of the Government that, in what may be called the 15-year areas—there are five or six of them; the hon. Gentleman represents one, and there is another at Plymouth—credit for contributions should be given to such children attending such places. Since this Amendment was put down I have looked at the drafting of the Clause, and I think that it carries out the intention of the Government. I will certainly look at it again, with the assistance of the Parliamentary draftsmen, and if we should have any doubts at all that it does not carry out what I and the hon. Gentleman want it to carry out, I will see to it that words are moved in on the Report stage in order to make it absolutely clear. With regard to the question of special schools raised by my hon. Friend the Member for Stourbridge, it is not the intention of the Government that such schools should be included under this provision. Without expressing any view beyond that which I have just expressed, namely, that it was not the intention of the Government to include them, I will nevertheless, look at this point along with the other point, and if I should come to the conclusion that it is right, desirable and proper that they should be included, then I will do so.
§ 6.52 p.m.
§ Mr. COVE
I am very glad to hear the Minister's statement, which I am sure, will be greatly appreciated by those who are interested in this problem. I hope that he will really look at the 95 problem of the special schools sympathetically. I do not wish to argue the case here, because I want time to be provided for a longer discussion on the Clause standing part. I can assure him that there are a good many people who view the position of these children with great anxiety, and he would meet the wishes of those interested in special schools if he could consider their case as sympathetically as he is to consider the other case. Both sets of pupils are under compulsion until a certain age, and, therefore, I hope that the Minister will consider the matter sympathetically and include them, if he possibly can, within the purvue of this scheme.
§ Mr. MORGAN
In view of the undertaking which has been given by the Minister of Labour, I beg to ask leave to withdraw the Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ 6.52 p.m.
§ Mr. LAWSON
I beg to move, in page 2, line 24, to leave out from "shall," to "apply," in line 27.
The Amendment deals with small points which really become very important in the long run. The Sub-section deals with regulations which have to be made for those who have to be credited with contributions but who remain at school. It provides that the regulations shall not come into effect as far as crediting contributions in respect of those who remain at school are concerned until 12 months after the Section has had effect. We want to know the reason for that. I should like to say a good many things upon this matter, but already we are nearly within half-an-hour of the falling of the guillotine, and if we go on much longer we shall not have an opportunity, which I am sure the Committee would agree that we should have, of discussing the principles on the Motion that the Clause stand part. I think that no one can say that anyone has so far spoken unnecessarily upon the Sub-section, and yet we already see the stupidity of passing a Guillotine Motion. The Minister ought to give us an explanation. I cannot understand these small, niggling points which will have a big effect upon the Clause in the long run.
§ 6.54 p.m.
§ Mr. HUDSON
I think that I can give my hon. Friend the Member for Chester- 96 le-Street (Mr. Lawson) the explanation in a very few words. If no such provision as the one to which he is taking objection existed in the Bill and the Bill came into operation on, say the 30th June, next, the result would be that children who left a secondary school at the end of July at the age of 16 would leave school with two years' contributions to their credit as a result of only four weeks' operation of the Bill. It would have been quite logical to have said that this particular part of the Clause should not come into operation until two years after the coming into operation of the Bill in order that everyone might start fair. That was, in our view, unnecessary, and we have adopted a compromise by saying that children who leave school in July, 1635, will have the advantage of this particular Section of the Act. In spite of the fact that they will not have been in school for two years but only for one year after the coming into force of the Bill, they will become entitled to the full credit of contributions. I hope that with that explanation the hon. Member will withdraw his Amendment.
§ Amendment negatived.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill."
§ 6.57 p.m.
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
While during the Debate we have been tinkering with two fences, a good many Members of the Committee have been bordering on the brink of a discussion of the principles of Clause 1. I did not intervene in two or three of the earlier debates because I thought that this was the right time in which to put our point of view. In agreement with an earlier speaker, we on this side of the Committee are in favour of closing the gap between the school-leaving age and the entry into insurance. We could go further. We would agree with the Royal Commission on National Health Insurance and say, that now that the Government are dealing with the problem of Unemployment Insurance, they ought to deal with the problem of National Health Insurance at the same time, and, in accordance with the recommendations of the Royal Commission, make the two schemes, as far as possible, coincident. We would also, I think, go further than the proposal which was made earlier in the evening. From our point of view we 97 take an entirely different attitude from that of the hon. Member for South Croydon (Mr. H. Williams) who raised what he called the moral issue, and the positive social wickedness of young people walking into Unemployment Insurance with only 10 stamps on their cards.
§ Mr. H. WILLIAMS
I did not say anything of the kind, I said walking into benefit without having worked in ordinary employment.
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
That makes the case of the hon. Gentleman worse. What about the social crime of keeping the children at school and then letting them roam the streets without any kind of public supervision or any kind of assistance? We would close the gap completely, and we think that the right way to do it is to credit every child in the schools with sufficient stamps, if the community cannot find him or her wage-earning employment, to enable that young person to obtain benefit as an unemployed person. It may be that this is confusing relief with insurance, but the Government's scheme confuses relief with insurance, and we regard it as a moral obligation, when a child is likely to have perhaps 50 years' insurable life, that we should spread out the benefit over the whole of that 50 years and enable the juvenile entrants into insurance to become immediately eligible for benefit if the labour market can find nothing for them to do.
But our main objection to Clause 1 is that we believe that this is the wrong way to tackle what we regard as a very serious problem. We have argued how bad Clause 1 is in detail, but we are against it on principle, because after the experience of the last two years it is more than ever clear that the right way to tackle this problem is to keep these young people whom it is now desired to insure out of the labour market altogether. As the right hon. Gentleman the Minister for Labour himself admitted during the Debate on an earlier Amendment, not only is there a volume of juvenile unemployment to-day in our midst, but because of the operation of the birth-rate the number of young persons coming into industry in the next year or two will increase; and, even if there be an increase in the volume of employment generally, the chances are that the volume of juvenile unemployment will in- 98 crease. There is now a very substantial amount of unemployment among juveniles. Unfortunately, all that we record with substantial accuracy are the insured juveniles between 16 and 18. According to the Report on the Work of the Local Committees for Juvenile Unemployment, however, in 1932, taking the whole volume of employed between 14 and 18, the average monthly number of unemployed boys and girls was 166,000. We are going to be faced with an increasing number of entrants into industry at the age of 14 in the next few years, and if the figures, which it is said have the authority of the Minister of Labour, are reliable, it would seem that the number of people available for employment between the ages of 14 and 18—which this year is about 1,750,000—will by 1937, four years from last year, be 2,300,000. That is a very substantial increase, and if the proportion of unemployment remains the same, the actual number of juveniles out of work will very substantially increase.
What is the situation to-day? A few months ago there was published the result of an inquiry into juvenile unemployment in the Lancashire cotton industry, carried out by people competent for the task. Last summer they discovered that, out of 21,000 young people who left school at the end of the summer term, 20 per cent. of the boys and 18 per cent. of the girls were still out of work three months after they had walked out of their schools at the summer holiday. In one particular area—not, I believe, the worst—where the unemployment in the summer months of 1932 amounted to 22 per cent. in the case of boys and 15 per cent. in the case of girls, no less than one-quarter of the boys leaving school for industry and nearly one-third of the girls leaving school for industry went into that particular employment, the cotton trade, and added to this very substantial volume of unemployment.
What will Clause 1 do for that problem? The problem of juvenile unemployment is a real one. What will Clause 1 do for these boys and girls, many of whom have had no footing whatever in wage-earning employment up to now? All they are offered is the prospect of training courses on the one hand and unemployment benefit when they reach the age of 16 on the other. Not only so, but, serious as unemployment is among juveniles, it happens to be even more serious among 99 older people, and the explanation is one with which this Committee is perfectly familiar. Hon. Members know what is happening; they know that boys and girls of 14, 15 and 16 are driving out of their jobs youths of 16, 17 and 18. Hon. Members know that these young people from 16 to 18 are driving out of their jobs young men and women between 18 and 21. They know that by this gradual process of substitution the young people are now actually putting their elder brothers and sisters, and their parents, out on to the streets to look for work. That is a very serious situation.
What is being done under Clause 1 to deal with this problem? Nothing, and our alternative proposal to Clause 1 is that we should boldly face the necessity, on educational as well as on economic grounds, of raising the school-leaving age. I should be prepared, if it were in order, to argue the question from the purely educational point of view and to say that from the point of view of economic efficiency it would be the wise thing now to raise the school-leaving age. But I am looking at this purely from the point of view of unemployment as we have it to-day. Remember that not only have we this large number of boys and girls leaving school now, this year, but because of the effect of the rise in the birth-rate immediately after the War we are going to have more leaving school in the next few years. I understand that if we were this year to raise the school-leaving age to 15, well over 400,000 boys and girls would be removed from the labour market in 1935. I am not going to pretend that that would mean 400,000 more jobs for their fathers and mothers, but I am going to argue that the effect of their withdrawal from industry, in so far as their labour is essential to the industry, would mean the reabsorption into wage-earning employment of large numbers of people who are to-day a very heavy drain on the fund.
Let us assume, if you like, that the withdrawal from industry of 400,000 or more young people only means the reestablishment in industry of 200,000 people above the age of 18. I reckon on figures—and this would be honest book-keeping, not like the book-keeping about which we have heard in the Debates on 100 Clause 1 earlier in the afternoon—that there would be a substantial gain to the fund. It is much cheaper to keep young people out of industry and maintain them than to pay unemployment insurance benefit to even half the number of adult males or adult females that may be absorbed into industry.
§ Mr. GREENWOOD
If it were quite in order to argue the matter at length, I should be prepared to give the figures and show that, even with reasonable maintenance rates for the additional year at school, it would certainly be a national gain, a gain to the community as a whole, to get rid of juvenile labour between 14 and 15, because of the diminution of unemployment benefit paid on the highest scale to people of higher ages. Even if it were not so, even if there were a net loss to the Exchequer in carrying out this plan, my friends and I on this side of the House would still regard it as the right way of dealing with the problem. We regard it as essential during this period of mechanisation, when the actual demand for labour is diminishing, to concentrate our labour power within the most effective periods of life, and therefore to raise the school-leaving age would be a definite part of our programme. I should hope that Members of the Committee would have some regard for these considerations. I do not suppose that the Vote will show it, but we shall put this as a test question on Clause 1; we shall go into the Lobby against Clause 1. Is this ramshackle, shoddy, dishonest piece of finance, this pretending to bring unemployment insurance down to the age of 14, the way to deal with the national problem; or is the proper way to deal with this problem to take immature people out of industry in order to provide greater opportunities for more mature workers? That is the issue which we place before the Committee in the discussion on the Motion that Clause 1 should stand part of the Bill. We may be beaten, but experience will prove that we are right. An increasing number of employers know that we are right; all education authorities know that we are right, and, whether it be on broad social grounds or on the more narrow economic grounds, we believe 101 that we have a claim to the support of the, Committee for the deletion of this Clause.
§ 7.15 p.m.
§ Mr. GRAHAM WHITE
I do not, in view of the near approach of the Closure, wish to occupy the attention of the Committee for more than a few moments, but I wish to say that we on these benches propose to support this Clause, not because we are enamoured of the proposals of the Government but because we think it is of great importance that something should be done in this matter, even if it is only a second best way. It is quite clear that the Government proposals, which can be described in the smallest number of words as a mixture of casual education with casual employment, are not the best way of dealing with this matter.
Our point of view on these benches is very largely that which was put forward by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Wakefield (Mr. Greenwood): namely, that this matter should be dealt with constructively and from an educational point of view. The argument which he mentioned with regard to the influence of the withdrawal of juvenile labour on the people in the higher age ranges is one of great importance, and he answered many of the questions which have been put. But we regard the matter of juvenile unemployment as a national scandal, and we regard as particularly scandalous that No-child's-land between 14 and 16 in which, when children leave school and enter it, unless they commit a breach of the law of the land or became seized with a notifiable disease, they pass out of the control and ken of all those influences and agencies which are available for them when they become 16 and over. That is the important point in this problem; it is a matter of social importance and national significance that after all these years that gap should be closed and the children brought within the scope and under the control of all those agencies which have been built up over a long period for their benefit. It is for that reason and that reason only that we support this Clause.
We believe that, in the long run, owing to the rapid development of machinery in a machine age, we shall be driven to plan our work on a proper basis, concentrating the new leisure upon those 102 who are of an age to benefit from it. We believe that that could be best done by raising the school-leaving age. That question has been raised in this Parliament by the Noble Lord the Member for Hastings (Lord E. Percy), who introduced a Bill dealing with the matter from another aspect, and it was also dealt with by the hon. Member for Bethnal Green, South-West (Sir P. Harris) who also introduced a Bill which went to a Division. Those are the lines on which the matter should be dealt with. We regard the closing of the gap between the ages of 14 and 16 as a matter of great importance, certainly far more important than the matter of the twopence that has occupied so much attention to-day.
§ 7.16 p.m.
§ Mr. HUDSON
I am anxious to give the Committee an opportunity to get on with another Clause. If I have understood rightly the argument of the right hon. Member for Wakefield (Mr. Greenwood), he objects to this Clause on two grounds, first, on the ground that the child is to be compelled to pay contributions from the age of 14 and is only to draw benefit on reaching the age of 16 and, secondly, that he would have preferred to raise the school-leaving age. As regards the first ground, I can quite understand and sympathise with his point of view because the party opposite take a diametrically opposite view of insurance and of the whole of this scheme from ourselves. We believe in the principle of insurance and we are trying to establish this as an insurance scheme. There is nothing inherently incompatible with an insurance scheme in suggesting that a person should pay in a certain number of premiums in order to build up in good times a claim on which he can draw in bad times. We have precedents to that effect in the case of the Widows', Orphans' and Old Age Pensions Act, and in the case of health insurance, where a person has to pay 104 contributions before he becomes entitled to receive benefit. We think that it is a salutary practice to extend that principle to the unemployment insurance system.
The right hon. Gentleman's second point was that he did not like our system of dealing with the problem of juvenile unemployment. He prefers his own idea of raising the school-leaving age. If by any chance he obtained a majority in the 103 Division and this Clause were deleted, even supposing that it were possible to bring in a Bill for raising the school-leaving age, it would take a very considerable time before it could come into operation. This would be for reasons I need not enter into; it would be out of order to do so. This is a much more important point—it would only deal with a tithe of the problem. It would not close the gap. There would still be a gap between the ages of 15 and 16. There would be no measure for dealing with unemployment between the ages of 15 and 16, 16 and 17, and 17 and 18. The raising of the school-leaving age would, according to the right hon. Gentleman, have some appreciable effect in reducing unemployment among adults, but I am certain that the optimistic estimates that many people have made of the probable result of raising the school-leaving age are very wide of the mark. In other words, in its net effect the right hon. Gentleman's proposal would be far less valuable than our proposal for dealing with the immediate problem with which we have to deal in the next few years, the probable increasing numbers of unemployed juveniles between the ages of 14 and 18. The raising of the school-leaving age, while dealing with those between the ages of 14 and 15, would leave untouched the problem of those between the ages of 15 and 18. It is because we are concerned with the whole age range between 14 and 18 that I ask the House to reject the Amendment.
§ 7.20 p.m.
§ Mr. COVE
The Liberal party are adopting an inconsistent attitude. When we discussed this principle during the regime of the first Labour Government the Liberal party were very anxious to defeat a proposal by the Labour Government to insure the children. To-night the Liberal party have gone back on that.
§ Mr. COVE
Yes. They are supporting this proposal of the Government on the plea that half a loaf is better than none. As I understand the position of the Liberal party, they say that this proposal will not interfere with the raising of the school-leaving age. If the Liberal party live for any time they will see that this proposal will interfere with the raising 104 of the school-leaving age. It is avowedly, as expressed by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education, the Government's alternative to the raising of the school age.
§ Mr. HUDSON
My right hon. Friend and myself have gone out of our way to point out on numerous occasions that there is absolutely nothing in this Bill which in any way hinders the raising of the school-leaving age. We have gone out of our way to adopt what is in some ways a rather cumbrous form of words in order to avoid the mention of the age of 14. There is nothing in the Bill that hinders in any way the raising of the school-leaving age.
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the BOARD of EDUCATION (Mr. Ramsbotham)
Will the hon. Member quote any phrase that I used to bear out his statement?
§ Mr. COVE
I am perfectly certain the hon. Member said it. I am not blaming him. He was asked a question what the Government proposed to do in view of the increasing number of children coming out of the schools in three or four years time. He gave the figures. I think he said that 430,000 more children between the ages of 14 and 18 would be in industry at the end of that time than there are at the present time. He was asked what about raising the school-leaving age, and I do not think the hon. Member will dispute that he said that the Government's policy in relation to those children is to be found in this Unemployment Bill. That cannot be disputed. It was announced quite definitely that here we have the Government providing a solution of the problem. This is their solution. The solution is that they are going to insure children and they are going to have junior instruction centres. In the wording of the Clause the Government have taken a leaf from the Labour Government's book. They say that the insurance of the children should coincide with the school- 105 leaving age, that they should be insured when they leave school, but there is no provision for raising the school-leaving age to 15, as there was in the Labour Government's Bill. The present proposal is insurance at the age of 14.
My Liberal friends must bear in mind that once the Minister of Labour has got hold of these children it will be infinitely more difficult for the Board of Education to get them. The system of junior instruction centres will have been established, and 100,000 children will go into those centres. If this does not mean anything, if it is a mere sop and a silly palliative, what is the use of spending all this money? The Minister has boasted that there will be an expenditure of over £1,000,000. I say definitely that the next line of advance will not be the raising of the school-leaving age but to secure actual benefit for the insurance premiums that are paid. The children are to go to the junior instruction centres. I am not going to deride those centres, but I say that it is absolutely impossible to plan any educational scheme inside of the junior instruction centre. A boy or a girl may be in the centre, out of work, for a month and may then find work and they will be outside the centre again. During the past week-end I have visited two junior instruction centres. One was in a condemned school, dirty, filthy, where no one would desire their children to go for the amenities there. Another centre, some miles away, was a condemned isolation hospital.
My Liberal friends are supposed to have some historic connection with the development of the education system and I would ask them to look at the problem and tell me where the real educational advantages are to be found in this Clause. There are none. One of my fundamental criticisms of this approach to the problem is that it is an approach from the point of view of
§ unemployment. The child goes from school into work and then passes from work into unemployment again. You cannot tackle this problem successfully from the point of view of unemployment. The school system has to be made into an organised, planned system that will make its contribution to the new technique that is desired in industry. What is happening under this Bill is that you throw the children out of the schools into unemployment and then you say: "We will try to save the morale of these children; we will try to save them from the worst effects of unemployment.' The Government are trying to do that by a system of junior instruction centres which cannot, by their very nature, make a very constructive contribution to the needs of the children or of the society in which we live.
I am amazed that the Liberal party should announce, through a spokesman who is usually put up to express progressive views, that they assent to a reactionary proposal of this kind. It has been shown conclusively to-night that you are exploiting the children, that the children are going to pay more into the Unemployment Fund than they are going to get out of it and that the State is shirking its obligation. The Government have looked at the problem and have said: "This is a gigantic problem. The position of hundreds of thousands of these children is going to be terrible." There is no doubt about that——
§ It being half-past Seven of the clock, the CHAIRMAN proceeded, pursuant to the Order of the House of the 19th December, 1933, to put forthwith the Question already proposed from the Chair.
§ Question put, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 319; Noes, 47.109
|Division No. 69.]||AYES.||[7.30 p.m.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir Francis Dyke||Balniel, Lord||Braithwaite, J. G. (Hillsborough)|
|Adams, Samuel Vyvyan T. (Leeds, W.)||Banks, Sir Reginald Mitchell||Brass, Captain Sir William|
|Agnew, Lleut.-Com. P. G.||Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Briant, Frank|
|Albery, Irving James||Barrie, Sir Charles Coupar||Broadbent, Colonel John|
|Alexander, Sir William||Barton, Capt. Basil Kelsey||Brocklebank, C. E. R.|
|Allen, William (Stoke-on-Trent)||Beaumont, Hon. R.E.B. (Portsm'th, C.)||Brown, Ernest (Leith)|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.||Betterton, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry B.||Browne, Captain A. C.|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Blaker, Sir Reginald||Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T.|
|Apsley, Lord||Blindell, James||Burghley, Lord|
|Aske, Sir Robert William||Bossom, A. C.||Burnett, John George|
|Astbury, Lieut.-Com. Frederick Wolfe||Boulton, W. W.||Butler, Richard Austen|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Bowater, Col. Sir T. Vansittart||Cadogan, Hon. Edward|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Bower, Lieut.-Com. Robert Tatton||Campbell, Sir Edward Taswell (Brmly)|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Bowyer, Capt. Sir George E. W.||Campbell, Vice-Admiral G. (Burnley)|
|Balfour, Capt. Harold (I. of Thanet)||Bracken, Brendan||Campbell-Johnston, Malcolm|
|Caporn, Arthur Cecil||Haslam, Sir John (Bolton)||O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Sir Hugh|
|Carver, Major William H.||Hellgers, Captain F. F. A.||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William G. A.|
|Cayzer, Sir Charles (Chester, City)||Hepworth, Joseph||Patrick, Colin M.|
|Cayzer, Maj. Sir H. R. (Prtsmth., S.)||Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John Waller||Peaks, Captain Osbert|
|Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)||Holdsworth, Herbert||Pearson, William G.|
|Chamberialn, Rt. Hon. Sir J. A. (Birm., W)||Hope, Capt. Hon. A. O. J. (Aston)||Penny, Sir George|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Edgbaston)||Hope, Sydney (Chester, Stalybridge)||Percy, Lord Eustace|
|Chapman, Sir Samuel (Edinburgh, S.)||Hornby, Frank||Perkins, Walter R. D.|
|Choriton, Alan Ernest Leofric||Horobin, Ian M.||Peters, Dr. Sidney John|
|Clarke, Frank||Horsbrugh, Florence||Petherick, M.|
|Clarry, Reginald George||Howard, Tom Forrest||Peto, Geoffrey K. (W'verh'pt'n, Bilston)|
|Colville, Lieut.-Colonel J.||Howitt, Dr. Alfred B.||Pickford, Hon. Mary Ada|
|Conant, R. J. E.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)||Pownall, Sir Assheton|
|Cook, Thomas A.||Hudson, Robert Spear (Southport)||Procter, Major Henry Adam|
|Cooke, Douglas||Hume, Sir George Hopwood||Pybus, Sir Percy John|
|Cooper, A. Duff||Hurst, Sir Gerald B.||Radford, E. A.|
|Copeland, Ida||Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas W. H.||Ramsay, T. B. W. (Western Isles)|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Jackson, Sir Henry (Wandsworth, C.)||Ramsbotham, Herwald|
|Craven-Ellis, William||James, Wing.-Com. A. W. H.||Ramsden, Sir Eugene|
|Crooke, J. Smedley||Jamleson, Douglas||Ratcliffe, Arthur|
|Crookshank, Capt. H. C. (Gainsb'ro)||Jesson, Major Thomas E.||Rea, Walter Russell|
|Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Joel, Dudley J. Barnato||Reed, Arthur C. (Exeter)|
|Crossley, A. C.||Johnston, J. W. (Clackmannan)||Reid, Capt. A. Cunningham.|
|Cruddas, Lieut.-Colonel Bernard||Jones, Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton)||Reid, James S. C. (Stirling)|
|Culverwell, Cyril Tom||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merloneth)||Reid, William Allan (Derby)|
|Curry, A. C.||Jones, Lewis (Swansea. West)||Remer, John R.|
|Dalkelth, Earl of||Kerr, Lieut.-Col. Charles (Montrose)||Rhys, Hon. Charles Arthur U.|
|Davidson, Rt. Hon. J. C. C.||Kerr, Hamilton W.||Rickards, George William|
|Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Ysovil)||Knight, Holford||Roberts, Aled (Wrexham)|
|Dawson, Sir Phillp||Knox, Sir Alfred||Ropner, Colonel L.|
|Denman, Hon. R. D.||Lamb, Sir Joseph Quinton||Rosbotham, Sir Thomas|
|Denville, Alfred||Law, Sir Alfred||Ross, Ronald D.|
|Despencer-Robertson, Major J. A. F.||Leckie, J. A.||Ross Taylor, Walter (Woodbridge)|
|Dickle, John P.||Leech, Dr. J. W.||Ruggles-Brise, Colonel E. A.|
|Donner, P. W.||Levy, Thomas||Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter|
|Drewe, Cedric||Liddall, Walter S.||Runge, Norah Cecil|
|Dugdale, Captain Thomas Lionel||Lindsay, Kenneth Martin (Kilm' rnock)||Russell, Albert (Kirkcaidy)|
|Duggan, Hubert John||Little, Graham-, Sir Ernest||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)|
|Duncan, James A. L. (Kensington, N.)||Lieweilln, Major John J.||Russell, Hamer Field (Sheffeld, B'tslde)|
|Eales, John Frederick||Lockwood, John C. (Hackney, C.)||Rutherford, Sir John Hugo (Liverp'l)|
|Eastwood, John Francis||Lockwood, Capt. J. H. (Shipley)||Salmon, Sir Isidore|
|Eden, Robert Anthony||Lumley, Captain Lawrence R.||Salt, Edward W.|
|Edmondson, Major A. J.||Lyons, Abraham Montagu||Samuel, Sir Arthur Michael (F'nham)|
|Ellis, Sir R. Geoffrey||Mabane, William||Sandeman, Sir A. N. Stewart|
|Elmley, Viscount||MacAndrew, Lieut.-Col. C. G. (Partick)||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip A. G. D.|
|Emmott, Charles E. G. C.||MacAndrew. Capt. J. O. (Ayr)||Savery, Samuel Servington|
|Emrys-Evans, P. V.||McCorquodale, M. S.||Selley, Harry R.|
|Entwistle, Cyril Fullard||MacDonald, Rt. Hn. J. R. (Seaham)||Shakespeare, Geoffrey H.|
|Erskine, Lord (Weston-super-Mare)||Macdonald. Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Shaw, Helen B. (Lanark, Bothwell)|
|Erskine-Boist, Capt. C. C. (Blackpool)||McEwen, Captain J. H. F.||Shaw, Captain William T. (Forfar)|
|Evans, Capt. Arthur (Cardiff, S.)||McKie, John Hamilton||Simon, Rt. Hon. Sir John|
|Evans, David Owen (Cardigan)||McLean, Dr. W. H. (Tradeston)||Skelton, Archibald Noel|
|Evans, R. T. (Carmarthen)||Macmillan. Maurice Harold||Smith, R. W. (Ab'rd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)|
|Everard, W. Lindsay||Macquisten, Frederick Alexander||Smithers, Waldron|
|Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst||Maitland, Adam||Somervell, Sir Donald|
|Fox, Sir Gifford||Makins, Brigadier-General Ernest||Somerville, D. G. (Willesden, East)|
|Fraser, Captain Ian||Mallalleu, Edward Lancelot||Soper, Richard|
|Fremantle, Sir Francls||Mender, Geoffrey le M.||Sotheran-Estcourt, Captain T. E.|
|Ganzonl, Sir John||Manninaham-Buller. Lt.-Col. Sir M.||Southby, Commander Archibald R. J.|
|Gibson, Charles Granville||Margesson. Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Spears, Brigadier-General Edward L.|
|Gillett, Sir George Masterman||Marsden. Commander Arthur||Spencer, Captain Richard A.|
|Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John||Martin, Thomas B.||Spender-Clay, Rt. Hon. Herbert H.|
|Glossop, C. W. H.||Mayhew, Lieut.-Colonel John||Spens, William Patrick|
|Giuckstein, Louis Halle||Meller. Sir Richard James||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Fylde)|
|Glyn, Major Sir Raiph G. C.||Mills. Major J. D. (New Forest)||Stanley, Hon. O. F. C. (Westmorland)|
|Goff, Sir Park||Mitchell, Harold P. (Br'tf'd & Chisw'k)||Steel-Maitland, Rt. Hon. Sir Arthur|
|Gower, Sir Robert||Mitchell. Sir W. Lane (Streatham)||Storey, Samuel|
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir Nicholas||Mitcheson. G. G.||Stourton, Hon. John J.|
|Greene, William P. C.||Monsell, Rt. Hon. Sir B. Eyres||Strickland, Captain W. F.|
|Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John||Moore, Lt.-Col. Thomas C. R. (Ayr)||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton-|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middiesbro', W.)||Moreing, Adrian C.||Sugden, Sir Wilfrid Hart|
|Grimston, R. V.||Morris. Owen Temple (Cardiff. E.)||Summersby, Charles H.|
|Guinness, Thomas L. E. B.||Morris-Jones. Dr. J. H. (Denbigh)||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)|
|Gunston, Captain D. W.||Morrison, William Shephard||Thomas, James P. L. (Hereford)|
|Guy, J. C. Morrison||Moss. Captain H. J.||Thompson, Sir Luke|
|Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.||Muirhead, Lleut.-Colonel A. J.||Todd, Capt. A. J. K. (B'wick-on-T.)|
|Hall, Capt. W. D'Arcy (Brecon)||Munro, Patrick||Todd, A. L. S. (Kingswinford)|
|Hamilton, Sir George (Ilford)||Nail-Cain. Hon. Ronald||Touche, Gordon Cosmo|
|Hammersiey, Samuel S.||Nation, Brigadier-General J. J. H.||Train, John|
|Hanbury, Cecil||Nicholson, Godfrey (Merpeth)||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Normand, Rt. Hon. Wilfrid||Turton, Robert Hugh|
|Harris, Sir Percy||North, Edward T.||Wallace, John (Dunfermline)|
|Hartland, George A.||Nunn, William||Ward, Lt.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Harvey, George (Lambeth, Kenningt'n)||O'Connor, Terence James||Ward, Irene Mary Bewlck (Wallsend)|
|Haslam, Henry (Horncastle)||O'Donovan, Dr. William James||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir John S.|
|Warrender, Sir Victor A. G.||Whyte, Jardine Bell||Withers, Sir John James|
|Waterhouse, Captain Charles||Williams, Charles (Devon, Torquay)||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir H. Kingsley|
|Watt, Captain George Steven H.||Williams, Herbert G. (Croydon, S.)||Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton (S'v'noaks)|
|Wedderburn, Henry James Scrymgeour-||Willoughby do Eresby, Lord||Young, Ernest J. (Middlesbrough, E.)|
|Wells, Sydney Richard||Wilson, Clyde T. (West Toxteth)|
|Weymouth, Viscount||Wilson, G. H. A. (Cambridge U.)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|White, Henry Graham||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George||Sir Frederick Thomson and Mr.|
|Whiteside, Borras Noel H.||Wise, Alfred R.||Womersley.|
|Adams, D. M. (Poplar, South)||Grenfell, David Rees (Glamorgan)||Milner, Major James|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Grithffis, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Owen, Major Goronwy|
|Banfield, John William||Grundy, Thomas W.||Paling, Wilfred|
|Batey, Joseph||Hall, George H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Parkinson, John Allen|
|Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale)||Hicks, Ernest George||Price, Gabriel|
|Brown, C. W. E. (Notts., Mansfield)||Jenkins, Sir William||Salter, Dr. Altred|
|Buchanan, George||Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Slivertown)||Smith, Tom (Normanton)|
|Cape, Thomas||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Thorne, William James|
|Cocks, Frederick Seymour||Kirkwood, David||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Cove, William G.||Lawson, John James||Wallhead, Richard C.|
|Cripps, Sir Stafford||Loonard, William||Williams, David (Swansea, East)|
|Daggar, George||Logan, David Gilbert||Williams, Dr. John H. (Llanelly)|
|Davles, David L. (Pontypridd)||Lunn, William||Wilmot, John|
|Dobble, William||McEntee. Valentine L.|
|Edwards, Charles||Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Graham, D. M. (Lanark, Hamilton)||Mainwaring, William Henry||Mr. John and Mr. Groves.|
|Greenwood, Rt. Hon. Arthur||Maxton, James|
Question, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill," put, and agreed to.
§ The CHAIRMAN then proceeded to put forthwith the Question necessary to dispose of the business to be concluded at half past Seven of the clock at this day's sitting.