HC Deb 02 March 1939 vol 344 cc1434-5
56. Mr. T. Williams

asked the Minister of Labour how many persons are registered as unemployed in the Thorne area; how many are in receipt of unemployment assistance; and what steps His Majesty's Government are taking to provide work?

Mr. E. Brown

At 16th January, 1939, there were 1,495 unemployed persons, aged 14 and over, on the registers of the Thorne employment exchange, of whom 727 aged 16 to 64 had applications authorised for the payment of unemployment allowances (exclusive of allowances in supplementation of insurance benefit). As regards the third part of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to the various statements of Government policy that have been made.

Mr. Williams

Is the Minister aware that all his statements on policy with regard to unemployment have not reduced the number of the unemployed in that area?

Mr. Brown

The hon. Member knows that a great deal has been done with regard to the coal industry in that area, and he knows also that a good deal of the problem does not arise in this country, but outside.

Mr. Williams

Will the Minister answer the question as to what the Government are doing to find these men employment?

Mr. Brown

We do everything we can to facilitate their entry into jobs through the ordinary machinery of employment exchanges. This is not an area where it is found easy to get local development councils to work.

Mr. Gallacher

Is the Minister not in favour of restoring the seven-hour day in the industry?