HC Deb 25 March 1968 vol 761 c883
3. Mr. Edward M. Taylor

asked the Minister of Labour how many people were unemployed in the building industry in Scotland at the most recent date for which figures are available; and what were the comparable figures at the same date in each of the previous three years.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Labour (Mr. E. Fernyhough)

At February, 1968, there were 16,360 persons registered as unemployed in Scotland who last worked in the construction industry. The corresponding February figures for 1967, 1966 and 1965 were 14,990, 10,300 and 13,340 respectively.

Mr. Taylor

Is it not criminal that we should have 16,000 building workers unemployed when we still have thousands of Glasgow folk suffering from the effects of storm damage? Will the hon. Gentleman help to organise a national recruiting campaign so that the efforts of these men can be concentrated on relieving the real suffering in Glasgow?

Mr. Fernyhough

I think that the last part of the supplementary question should have been addressed to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland, but the hon. Gentleman must know that no Government in all the post-war years have done more to meet the housing needs of Scotland than the present Government.

Mr. William Hamilton

Is it not the case that a great proportion of these unemployed persons are unskilled? Can my hon. Friend say what the shortage of skilled men is?

Mr. Fernyhough

I am sorry but I cannot give my hon. Friend that information without notice.