§ 37. Mr. Lawson
asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance when he intends to introduce wage-related unemployment benefit.
§ Mr. Wood
The hon. Gentleman can be fully assured that we should not have entered into detailed discussions with the Trades Union Congress and the British Employers' Confederation if we were not contemplating at all the possibility of this principle. When I have a statement to make, I shall make it.
§ Mr. Lawson
Is the Minister aware that in this respect this country has already dropped behind most other advanced industrial countries? Does he not agree that he should now give us this information and that it is about time he gave us a definite statement that he intends quickly to introduce wage-related unemployment benefit.
§ Mr. Prentice
Is the Minister aware that Lord Blakenham, when he was Minister of Labour, promised us on this side of the House that the Government would legislate on severance pay last autumn? That subject was delayed while these talks on wage-related unemployment benefits were held. Now we seem to be no nearer a conclusion from the Government on either subject. Does not this show that the Government are very tardy?