HC Deb 28 October 1920 vol 133 cc1995-6W

asked the Minister of Labour if he can make any statement showing how the earliest effective use can be made of the scheme of unemployment insurance?


The scheme of Unemployment Insurance under the National Insurance (Unemployment) Acts, 1911 to 1919, is at present in operation, and benefit is being paid under these Acts to unemployed persons who are insured under these Acts. The Unemployment Insurance Act, 1920, comes into operation on the 8th November, and benefit at the new rates provided in the Act can be paid on and from that date to claimants, satisfying the usual conditions, who have served a waiting period of six days before the 8th November, or not having served a waiting period of six days before the 8th November, Serve a waiting period of three days from the 8th November. As regards new entrants, that is to say, persons who are brought into insurance for the first time by the new Act, benefit cannot be paid until at least four contributions have been paid in respect of them. As contributions are payable in respect of calendar weeks, such four contributions cannot be completed until the week which ends on the 4th December. As soon as four contributions have been paid, a claimant may receive an aggregate of eight weeks' benefit under Section 44 of the Act, subject to a waiting period of three days. This provision will apply to persons insured under the repealed Acts who have at least four unexhausted contributions to their credit. The rate of benefit under the repealed Acts to 8th November is 11s. for men and women, with half-rates for boys and girls. Under the new Act, and as from the 8th November, the weekly rates of benefit are: Men, 15s.; women, 12s.; boys, 7s. 6d.; and girls, 6s.