§ 1. Mr. Owen
asked the Minister of Labour what steps are being taken to find employment for the 2,531 men and 24 young persons registered as disabled in the east Northumberland area; and whether he will make a statement.
§ The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Labour (Mr. Peter Thomas)
of the 2,531 men and 24 young persons registered as disabled, only 170 men and 10 young persons were unemployed on 11th April. My disablement resettlement officers are doing their best to find suitable work for them.
§ Mr. Owen
While appreciating the efforts which are being made to deal with this problem in that locality, may I ask whether the Minister is aware that with the contraction of the mining industry opportunities for providing employment for the disabled persons become more and more difficult to create? Is it not possible to give some consideration to an extension of the Remploy factory in the area or the provision of facilities whereby some of these young people can be transferred to other areas, with some supervision and support?
§ Mr. Thomas
I appreciate the difficulties which the contraction of the coal mining industry brings, but the number of unemployed among the registered disabled men has declined by seventeen over the last month, and ten severely disabled persons have been placed in the Remploy factory at Bedlington during the last six months.