§ Mr. F. MARTIN
asked the Minister of Labour whether he has received representations from Scottish herring curers with regard to the hardship inflicted by the operations of the Unemployment Insurance Acts on women fish workers engaged during the herring fishing season; whether he is aware that, because the women are rarely employed for 20 weeks in one year and because when not employed in fish working they are engaged in home duties, they thus cannot except in a very few special cases secure any benefit; and whether he will consider taking steps to exempt them from Unemployment Insurance?
I have received representations in this matter. Women who have paid some contributions as fish curers within a recent period may in proper cases qualify for benefit during the fishing season even if they have not paid 20 contributions. Outside the season these women are not usually in industrial employment and cannot in general qualify for benefit. I have no power to exclude any class of insured contributor from the scope of insurance.