§ The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Health (Miss Horsbrugh)
Yes, Sir. Efforts have been made to expedite the settlement of these 55,000 accounts; but it will be understood that progress has depended upon the submission of consolidated claims for each area by local national registration officers, who were not in a position to prepare any final accounts until less than a month ago, as well as upon the headquarters accounting staff. In the circumstances indicated, I am not in a position to specify by what date all payments will be received by enumerators. Local officers have, however, already been pressed to expedite the claims in all areas for which they have not as yet been submitted, and I can assure the hon. Member that all claims received which are found in order will be met without delay.
§ Mr. R. C. Morrison
Will the hon. Lady bear in mind that many of these people who have been engaged in National Registration had been unemployed for some time? Surely it is unreasonable to expect them, now that they have got some work, to wait over two months before they get any pay?
§ Miss Horsbrugh
I think the hon. Member will have seen from the answer 1030 that every effort has been made to expedite the payments. Many of the claims have been met, and the outstanding ones will be met after the final conclusion has been made.