– in the House of Commons on 7th May 1940.
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will state the arrangements made generally for welfare work in factories engaged on War Office work; what persons or organisations are in charge of it; whether it is being done through a Government Department or voluntary agency; and the average and maximum hours of work, including overtime?
It is part of the duty of the head of a War Department establishment to give careful attention to the welfare of the civilian employés under his control, and local machinery exists for discussion between him and the employés'representatives of any aspect of their welfare which may arise. Welfare officers exist at certain of the larger establishments, and liaison is maintained with the Home Office with regard to the provisions of the Factories Acts. Hours of work vary as between the different establishments and as between classes of workers, but heads of establishments are constantly urged to restrict overtime to the minimum necessary.
Are the services of any of the voluntary agencies who specialise in this kind of work being made use of?
I do not believe so. I think it is done by welfare officers under our control.