Tuesday, 13 June 1944
Dáil Éireann Debate
Mr. Corish: asked the Minister for  Industry and Commerce if he will state why qualification certificates issued under the Unemployment Assistance Acts have been withdrawn from Messrs. John Murphy, King Street, Wexford, No. AO345; Peter Redmond. Harper's Lane, Wexford, No. 1075; Edward O'Leary, Harper's Lane, Wexford, No. Y2100, and Edward Nolan, Carrigeen Street, Wexford, No. AO 435.
Parliamentary Secretary to Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. O'Grady): It was decided by an unemployment assistance officer that Messrs. Murphy, Redmond, O'Leary and Nolan were not entitled to hold qualification certificates as the means in each case, calculated in accordance with the Unemployment Assistance Acts, exceeded the statutory limit of £39 per annum. Messrs Redmond, O'Leary and Nolan appealed against the decision of the unemployment assistance officer. In the cases of Messrs. Redmond and Nolan the decision was confirmed. Further inquiries are being made in Mr. O'Leary's case. He will be notified of the result of his appeal as soon as possible.
Mr. Corish: Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware that these men are casual workers, being engaged for only a few weeks during the corn season, in which period they are alleged to have earned the amount of money which is responsible for the withdrawal of their qualification certificates? Is he further aware that it is only in this period the men are able to earn sufficient to purchase boots and clothes for the year, and is he still further aware that there is now nothing between these men and starvation? Surely, that particular section should not be so rigidly interpreted as to prevent such people from getting unemployment assistance?
Mr. O'Grady: These men were employed as grain porters at Wexford, and their total earnings for the year, as computed in connection with their claims for unemployment benefit, must be divided by 52, and if they are shown to be in receipt of a total earning exceeding £39 they do not qualify in  accordance with the provisions of the Act.
Mr. Corish: It so happens that these men are engaged for a period inside three or four weeks, when they have unlimited hours of work, and it is too bad that they should be deprived of some benefit during the remaining portion of the year. I do not think the Minister ever intended that that interpretation should be put upon the legislation.
|Last Updated: 18/05/2011 22:05:31||Page of 23|