Shetland and North Scotland

Oral Answers to Questions — Employment – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 17th June 1952.

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Photo of Mr Jo Grimond Mr Jo Grimond , Orkney and Shetland 12:00 am, 17th June 1952

asked the Minister of Labour how unemployment in Shetland and the seven crofting counties, respectively, compares, over last year, with the general United Kingdom rate.

Photo of Mr Harold Watkinson Mr Harold Watkinson , Woking

As the reply includes a Table of figures I will, if I may, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Photo of Mr Jo Grimond Mr Jo Grimond , Orkney and Shetland

Is it not the case that unemployment, at least in certain of the crofter counties, has been consistently higher; and if that is the case, can the hon. Gentleman say what the Government propose to do to reduce it?

Photo of Mr Harold Watkinson Mr Harold Watkinson , Woking

Perhaps the hon. Gentleman would have a look at the figures. It is quite true, as he rightly says, that the position, particularly in the Shetlands, must cause my right hon. and learned Friend grave concern. He is watching the position very carefully.

Photo of Hon. Patrick Maitland Hon. Patrick Maitland , Lanark

Can the figures for 1950 be included in the information my hon. Friend is giving to the House?

Photo of Mr Harold Watkinson Mr Harold Watkinson , Woking

Yes, Sir, the figures will be included in the information.

Following is the reply:

PERCENTAGE RATES OF UNEMPLOYMENT IN THE UNDERMENTIONED AREAS: MAY, 1951-MAY, 1952
AreaNumber of unemployed persons on the registers of Employment Exchanges in the area named in Col. (1) expressed as percentage of the estimated total number of employees in the area of those Exchanges
21st May, 195113th Aug., 195112th Nov., 195111th Feb., 195212th May, 1952
Shetland Islands11·98·613·321·118·0
Orkney Islands1·00·61·62·60·7
Counties of Caithness, Ross and Cromarty, Sutherland, Inverness Argyle.*5·44·46·58·75·7
Great Britain1·01·01·41·92·2
* Owing to the fact that the boundaries of employment exchange areas do not coincide with county boundaries it is not possible to provide separate figures for each of these counties.