Catering Trade (Pay and Conditions).

Oral Answers to Questions — Government Departments. – in the House of Commons at on 3 July 1924.

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Viscountess ASTOR:

57.

asked the Minister of Labour whether he is aware of the growing public dissatisfaction with the conditions of pay and employment of waitresses at Wembley and elsewhere: and if he can state the reasons which make it impracticable to set up a Trade Board for the catering trade?

Photo of Mr Thomas Shaw Mr Thomas Shaw , Preston

I have received representations from various quarters to the effect that the conditions of pay and employment in the catering trade are unsatisfactory. I have asked for the specific evidence on which such representations are based, and if the facts justify this course, I should propose to institute a general inquiry with a view to determining whether there is a case for the application of the Trade Boards Acts to the catering trade.

Viscountess ASTOR:

Is it not the fact that the Inspectors of the Ministry already have evidence enough to go on? Also that the National Union of General Workers and the Workers' Union have got enough evidence; and is there not enough evidence, and is not this the time, to set up a Trade Board?

Photo of Mr Thomas Shaw Mr Thomas Shaw , Preston

If I had thought that the evidence was sufficient I should not have asked for specific evidence.

Photo of Dorothy Jewson Dorothy Jewson , Norwich

Is it not the fact that the Employment Exchanges are used to supply cheap labour to the employers for Wembley and elsewhere, and will the Minister not give instructions to the Exchanges that no woman shall be offered a job below a decent wage?