HC Deb 30 November 1960 vol 631 cc369-70
12. Mr. Timmons

asked the Minister of Labour if he will state the number of school leavers this year in the north Lanarkshire area who are still unemployed.

Mr. P. Thomas

On 14th November there were 22.

Mr. Timmons

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that that is only the figure of those who are presently registering with the Youth Employment Committee? Is he aware that many of the young people get fed up and decide not to sign the youth employment register, and that this situation is more acute in north Lanarkshire than in other parts of the country?

Mr. Thomas

I certainly could not answer all those questions without notice, but I can tell the hon. Gentleman that there were 4,468 school leavers between 1st January and 1st November and that of those only 22 have failed to get employment.

Mr. Lee

Have we not the same principle here as that mentioned earlier? Are these not 22 human tragedies? When we think in terms of delinquency, there is no answer to this in the set reply "Beat 'em, Mummy". Surely, it is a question of whether we can find training and proper employment for 22 young people who, if we do not find employment for them immediately, will drift into blind-alley occupations or crime? Surely, that is the problem.