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Building Trade

Volume 155: debated on Monday 26 June 1922

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asked the Prime Minister whether, in view of the large amount of unemployment in the building trades, involving expenditure at the rate of over £65,000 per week in unemployment benefit, the Government will revise their policy and now allow grants to be made from their unemployment relief fund towards local authorities prepared to erect houses where serious overcrowding continues?

The question whether it is possible to assist local authorities in the manner suggested is to be considered by the Unemployment Committee of the Cabinet.

When the Committee consider this question, will they bear in mind that the present system is costing the rates £4,000,000 a year, which is paid to building operatives who are doing nothing? Would it not be more productive to use the money for building houses?

Of course, the Committee will bear that in mind. It is what they are considering.