Insurance Fund (Royal Commission)
asked the Prime Minister when he will be in a position to announce the names of the members of the Royal Commission on Unemployment Insurance?
My right hon. Friend has asked me to reply as he is unable to be present himself. It is not yet possible to say precisely when this announcement will be made but there will be no avoidable delay.
Will the right hon. Lady give the House some indication as to when this Commission will be appointed, as this is a very important matter?
I would ask the hon. Member to await the further announcement.
Road Schemes, London
asked the Minister of Transport how many London men were employed on arterial roads receiving financial assistance from the London County Council and from the Government at the last available date, and on the same date in 1929, 1928, and 1927, respectively?
I assume that the hon. Member refers to the programme of works on arterial roads arranged for in the year 1923–24 and carried out under the direct supervision of my Department, towards the cost of which the London County Council made a contribution on condition that a pro- portion of the labour employed should be recruited from the London Employment Exchanges. The programme of works referred to, estimated to cost £3,000,000, is now practically completed and the number of men so recruited who were in employment on 31st October, 1930, was 42. On the corresponding date in 1929, 1928 and 1927, the respective numbers were 141,272 and 664. I would add that other schemes have been carried out under the direct supervision of the Ministry towards the cost of which the London County Council have contributed, but without the condition regarding recruitment through London Exchanges, and in these cases information is not available in the Department as to the number of London men employed on the works.
Is it proposed to initiate any new schemes on similar lines to meet the special conditions of unemployment this winter, or is this to be allowed to lapse?
I am not sure that schemes could be submitted on exactly similar lines, because a great deal of this work has now been completed. We are in negotiation with the London County Council as to a considerable programme of public improvements which I am anxious to get carried forward at the earliest possible date.
asked the First Com- missioner of Works if, before approving the plans for the new Employment Ex- change in Bristol, he will satisfy himself that adequate and suitable conveniences for both sexes are provided?
For reasons Which have been given in this House, it is the policy of my Department or of Ministry of Labour to provide conveniences for applicants attending Employment Exchanges. The plans for the Bristol Exchange have been discussed with the local employment committee, and arrangements have been made to meet cases of emergency.
Can my right hon. Friend say whether the local Employment Exchange committee are fully satisfied with the plans?
I should not like to say that anybody is satisfied with anything, but, so far as it is possible to satisfy them, I think they are.
Is my right bon. Friend aware that in Berlin and in other large Continental cities there is provision of this sort?
asked the Minister of Labour the estimated number of men employed on works of improvement and new construction on classified roads and bridges, excluding those on work of maintenance, repair and reconstruction?
The number is approximately 21,500.
Does that mean that this 21,000, who are employed under the Road Fund, which was not started by the present Government, must be deducted from the total of 72,000 who are said to be directly employed under Government schemes?
Yes, that is so.