Labour Exchange Act 1909 • National Insurance Act, 1911 (Part Two)
Labour Exchange Act,1909 Previous to 1909 the unemployed just waited outside factories to see if they were needed for the day. Work was unreliable. The Labour Exchange enabled the employer and employee to discuss their needs at one central location. They were also provided with detailed information about job opportunities. These exchanges also offered washing facilities, clothes mending facilities and refreshments.
Winston Churchill led the act through parliament in September 1909 and by the following February 83 labour exchanges existed. By 1913 430 exchanges were in place in Britain allowing 3000 people to work everyday.
Restrictions • The exchanges did not create new jobs and provided little help to the unemployed in those areas where extra employees were not required. • The act was not as effective, as workers where not registering, nor where the employers notifying vacancies of jobs. • It was only helpful to the skilled, as the unskilled struggled to find suitable vacancies and exchanges did not provide training to help them gain new skills.
National Insurance Act 1911(Part Two) • Insurance was the other major project directed at the unemployed. • The project commenced in July 1912 although benefits were not payable until January 1913. • It is essential for workers in certain trades vulnerable to seasonal unemployment. • These trades were ship building, mechanical engineering, building, construction, iron founding and saw milling. • The Act is often regarded as one of the foundations of modern social welfare in the United Kingdom. • Workers paid 21/2d, employers 21/2d and the state paid 3d per week.
Workers were entitled to unemployment benefit of 7 shillings (35p) a week allocated for up to 15 weeks from the Labour exchange. • The unemployment insurance fund grew and by 1914 it had a sum of £23million in it.
Restrictions • The sum of benefit paid was relatively low, and some workers who had received their claim of the 15 weeks benefits soon returned to the poor law as their money was all spent. • It provided help with temporary problems but it did not save the long term unemployed. • In addition the majority of workers were not covered by the system and thus without income should they become unemployed. • Only the workers involved in the trades stated received the benefits. • Also the benefits covered the worker only and not his family.
Created by: Hannah Ailsa Jamie B