§ 33. Mr. Lennox-Boyd
asked the Minister of Health whether he will explain the reasons why seasonal workers employed in picking beans are subject to the provisions of the National Health Insurance Act while workers similarly engaged in picking peas are not subject to such insurance; and, the two occupations being practically identical, whether steps can be taken to remove the existing anomaly and to treat both these employments for the purpose of health insurance similarly?
§ Sir K. Wood
The relevant provision is an Order made under the National Health Insurance Act specifying the gathering of peas as an occupation that is ordinarily adopted as a subsidiary employment only and not as the principal means of livelihood. That is to say, it is ordinarily undertaken by persons who have some other regular occupation which they follow throughout the year. The evidence considered in connection with the making of the Order showed that bean-picking was not such an occupation, but was ordinarily undertaken as one of a series of casual employments on which, taken together, the persons employed were dependent for their livelihood. I shall, of course, be pleased to consider any representations which my hon. Friend may wish to make on the subject.