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Wage-Stop Rule

Volume 828: debated on Tuesday 21 December 1971

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what sum of money has been withheld from persons currently unemployed in Scotland and in receipt of supplementary benefit because of the operation of the wage stop rule, and what was the corresponding sum in June, 1970.

I regret that this information is not available, as no separate figures of the amounts are kept for Scotland.

Why are not these figures kept, since they would be very useful for hon. Members? Would the hon. Gentleman undertake to look at the unfairness of the way in which the wage stop operates, in the sense that it operates with reference to the basic wage, without taking into account the earnings of the man who has become unemployed? Would the hon. Gentleman not reconsider the possibility of relating the wage stop provision to the average earnings over the previous six months when the man was employed?

Up-to-date figures of the number of people involved will be available in a few months. Perhaps I may remind the hon. Gentleman that over 3,000 people in Scotland have benefited as a result of the family income supplement. Either they have been removed from the wage stop entirely as a result of this or the amount of supplementary benefit which is being paid to them has been increased as a result of this.