asked the Minister of Labour what percentage of the iron and steel workers of the Rotherham and Sheffield district were unemployed in September and October; whether the pro- portion is still rising; and what special measures are proposed for their relief and for the revival of the industry?
The proportion of iron and steel workers registered as unemployed in this district, which was 30·6 per cent. on 9th September, fell to 22·9 per cent. on 7th October and then rose to 27·7 per cent. on 28th October. All unemployed workers in these trades are eligible, subject to the usual conditions, for a new period of unemployment benefit which began last week, and under the Unemployed Workers' Dependants Bill grants will be added for the assistance of those who have a wife or children dependent upon them. Substantial grants towards the provision of work have been made out of public funds, both to Sheffield and to Rotherham, and any application for further grants, subject to the published conditions, would be immediately and sympathetically considered. As regards measures for the revival of industry, I cannot add anything to the announcement already made and fully discussed in this House.