HC Deb 07 December 1944 vol 406 cc700-1
7. Mr. Rhys Davies

asked the Minister of Labour whether he is aware that a coal-mines ballottee, unaccustomed to manual labour, after working underground for a few weeks has been incapacitated for several months medically certified through being so tall that he has to walk and work underground stooping; that he cannot claim workmen's compensation, nor declare on health insurance benefit, not being insured long enough, nor claim unemployment insurance, being incapable of following any employment, and has not therefore drawn any funds from any source and is living with his widowed mother; and will he see to it that such factors are borne in mind in determining the kind of mining work for ballottees.

Mr. Bevin

If the hon. Member will let me have particulars of the case he has in mind, I will have inquiries made.

Mr. Davies

Will the Minister be good enough to bear in mind that this boy is very much afraid that something worse might befall him if his name were disclosed? Will the Minister consider the position of these very tall boys for work at the pithead? I have the case of another boy 6 ft. 5 in. tall.

Mr. Bevin

I rather regret my hon. Friend's suggestion that, if he gives me the name of the citizen, that citizen will be, in any way, prejudiced thereby. I gather that that is the inference to be drawn from his remarks. How can I deal with the case if I do not know the person's name? I will look into any case which hon. Members bring to me, with a desire to do what is right.

Mr. E. J. Williams

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that miners have never been selected on account of their height?