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Agricultural Workers (Bank Accounts)

Volume 437: debated on Wednesday 7 May 1947

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asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what are the arrangements for the repayment to Jamaican agricultural labourers on their return from the U.S.A. of money paid into their accounts in the Agricultural Workers' Branch of the Government Savings Bank.

In accordance with the contract into which each worker enters with the United States Government, 25 per cent. of his earnings is deducted at the source and paid to his account at the Agricultural Workers' Branch of the Government Savings Bank in Jamaica. While he is in the United States, monthly payments not exceeding £3 are made to his dependants from this amount. On his return, the balance is paid to him on the production of satisfactory evidence of identity.

Could the Secretary of State say whether these men on their return from America are able to obtain a full written statement of their accounts?

I should want notice of that question. I think there has been some little difficulty up to now because of delays, but we are trying to speed matters up.

Are they allowed to keep their dollars, or are they forcibly converted to sterling?