HC Deb 14 March 1972 vol 833 cc54-5W
52. Mr. Wall

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what action he is taking to amend the law regarding the payment of social benefits to strikers and their families when no strike pay is available.

Sir K. Joseph

I indicated in the debate on the Second Reading of the Social Security Bill that the Government would be reviewing the effect of the legislation in the light of experience to see whether any change was necessary and this is being done.

76. Mr. Bruce-Gardyne

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he yet has details of the total cost to public funds of supplementary benefits paid to those involved in the miners' strike, and to their dependants during the duration of the strike, of payments made after resumption of work, and of the administrative costs of making these payments to suit the convenience of recipients; and if he will instance the last industrial stoppage which involved his Department, or the predecessor Departments, in larger outgoings than this.

Sir K. Joseph

The total amount of supplementary benefit paid during the dispute to the strikers themselves was £152,659 and for their dependants £5,370,821. A further £521,573 was paid following resumption of work. The administrative cost of the dispute is not yet known. The length of the miners' strike together with the large number of men involved combined to make the amount of supplementary benefit so far paid out the highest in an industrial dispute.