HC Deb 27 July 1937 vol 326 c2858
66. Mr. W. Joseph Stewart

asked the Minister of Labour what steps he is taking to deal with the question of men declared by the Unemployment Assistance Board as ineligible for assistance; and is he aware that, owing to the action of the Board, large numbers of able-bodied unemployed are being made subject to Poor Law relief?

Mr. E. Brown

I would refer the hon. Member to my reply to questions on this subject on Thursday last by the hon. Member for Stoke (Mr. E. Smith) of which I am sending him a copy.

Mr. Stewart

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the local authorities have to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds annually to maintain able-bodied unemployed whose maintenance ought to be a national, and not a local charge?

Mr. Brown

If the hon. Member will study the answer which I am sending him, he will see that I received a deputation from the authorities affected, and I am considering the points which they put to me.

Mr. Thorne

Will the right hon. Gentleman be able to give a definite reply before the House adjourns?

Mr. Brown

No, Sir.

Mr. Thorne

Then I suppose we have to wait until about November?