Caretakers.

Oral Answers to Questions — Unemployment – in the House of Commons on 1st March 1922.

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Photo of Mr James Sexton Mr James Sexton , St Helens

23.

asked the Minister of Labour if he can inform the House whether the case decided by the High Court which excluded caretakers from benefit under the Unemployment Insurance Act, to which they had been contributing since its enactment, was initiated by his Department?

Photo of Mr Thomas Macnamara Mr Thomas Macnamara , Camberwell North West

In accordance with Proviso (ii) of Section 10 (1) of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1920, I referred to the High Court for decision certain test cases of persons employed as cleaners and caretakers whom I had previously held to be insurable. I took this course because my decision with regard to a similar type of employment, which I had held to be insurable, had been reversed in the High Court. I would add that counsel on my behalf argued that such persons should be held to be insurable, but this contention was rejected by the Court.

Photo of Mr William Thorne Mr William Thorne , West Ham Plaistow

Can the right hon. Gentleman give any reason why it has taken so long to find out whether this particular class of people is insurable or not?

Photo of Mr Thomas Macnamara Mr Thomas Macnamara , Camberwell North West

The question was not raised until the action in the Courts.