Occupational Deafness

Oral Answers to Questions — Pensions and National Insurance – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 28th November 1960.

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Photo of Mr Reginald Prentice Mr Reginald Prentice , East Ham North 12:00 am, 28th November 1960

asked the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance what proposals he has for prescribing occupational deafness as an industrial disease; and whether he will refer this matter to the Industrial Injuries Advisory Council.

Photo of Mr John Boyd-Carpenter Mr John Boyd-Carpenter , Kingston upon Thames

None, Sir, though I understand that the Industrial Injuries Advisory Council has been keeping this disease under review as part of its normal duties.

Photo of Mr Reginald Prentice Mr Reginald Prentice , East Ham North

May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether he has yet reached any conclusion from the wider studies of the Government's investigation into the problem of noise? Five months ago I asked him a similar Question and he said that he was keeping in touch with the matter. Would he agree that a number of countries cover occupational deafness in their industrial injuries schemes? Why should we lag behind?

Photo of Mr John Boyd-Carpenter Mr John Boyd-Carpenter , Kingston upon Thames

In answer to the last part of the hon. Gentleman's supplementary question, he will well appreciate the very real difficulties which may be encountered in bringing this particular complaint within the relevant Section of the Industrial Injuries Act. On the wider point, as he may know, the Industrial Injuries Advisory Council has asked its Industrial Diseases Subcommittee to keep it informed about the research which is going on.