Since the publication last year of the Report upon conditions in the Light Refreshment and Dining Room (non-licensed) branch of the Catering Trade, no fresh facts have been brought to notice which would justify the institution of a new inquiry.
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that it was stated recently by the Chairman of the Licensed Victuallers' Defence Association, that 65 hours a week, exclusive of meal times, was considered quite proper in that trade? That has been stated in the last few months.
Would not the points referred to by the right hon. Gentleman be sufficient to justify him in proceeding forthwith to establish a trade board for this body of workpeople?
Is it not the case that unless the right hon. Gentleman is prepared to carry out an inquiry of this kind, there is no possible chance of these people getting any advance in pay or reduction of hours; that the only alternative is to go out on strike, and that they can then be "pinched" under the Government's Bill, next week?
Trade Boards have been set up in Great Britain and are in operation in 39 trades. No exact information is available as to the number of workpeople employed in these trades, but it is estimated that some 350,000 males and 922,600 females are so employed.