§ Mr. KIRKWOOD
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland the total number of persons in Scotland on able-bodied and poor relief as at May, 1934, compared with May, 1933; and what is responsible for the abnormal increase?
§ Sir G. COLLINS
The numbers of persons, excluding dependants, in receipt of ordinary poor relief in Scotland at 15th May in the years 1933 and 1934 were 90,959 and 98,193, respectively, an increase of 7.9 per cent. The corresponding figures for persons in receipt of able-bodied relief were 43,348 and 72,338, respectively, an increase of 66.8 per cent. With regard to the latter part of the question, the hon. Member will see that there have been increases in both cases. As regards the ordinary poor, the cause of the increase would appear mainly to be the cumulative effect of the long continued industrial depression in exhausting resources available for the support in working-class families of non-able-bodied members of the family. With regard to the much greater increase of the able-bodied who are receiving relief, I am informed that 91 per cent. of this increase has occurred in Glasgow and Greenock, where the rates of relief were recently increased, involving the addition to the Poor Roll of persons whose unemployment insurance benefit and transitional payments are being supplemented.