Oral Answers to Questions — Clothes Rationing.

– in the House of Commons on 25th June 1941.

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Photo of Mr Ian Hannah Mr Ian Hannah , Wolverhampton Bilston

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware of the hardship caused by the coupon sys tem to the lower-paid working-women and their families, seeing that buying material to be made up takes more coupons than ' purchasing the completed article; and will he permit councils of social service, and similar organisations, to buy remnants or seconds from the manufacturers without coupons on the strict understanding that they are to be used solely for the benefit of poorly-paid workers?

Photo of Mr Charles Waterhouse Mr Charles Waterhouse , Leicester South

No, Sir. I am not aware of any such hardship. The amount of material needed for any garment naturally varies with the style and size, but the balance of advantage is, for the garments usually made at home, somewhat in favour of the home dressmaker or knitter. It would not be practicable to restrict coupon-free sales of remnants and seconds to the lower-paid workers nor is it evident that their need for coupons will exceed that of other members of the community.

Photo of Mr Ian Hannah Mr Ian Hannah , Wolverhampton Bilston

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware of the concern felt by dressmakers that they can no longer obtain stiffenings or canvas without surrendering coupons, such materials having, in the past, been provided by them as a merely incidental part of making up dresses or coats; and will he take steps to enable them to secure, without the surrender of coupons, this essential ingredient of their work?

Photo of Mr Charles Waterhouse Mr Charles Waterhouse , Leicester South

The exemption of these materials is being discussed with the trade interests concerned.

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in his scheme for rationing clothing, he will consider dungarees, women's housekeeping aprons and overalls as protective clothing for which coupons will not be needed?

Photo of Mr Charles Waterhouse Mr Charles Waterhouse , Leicester South

The question of exempting certain of the more essential types of protective clothing from rationing is under consideration An announcement will be made shortly.

Photo of Mr William Jackson Mr William Jackson , Breconshire and Radnorshire

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that farmers have to produce coupons for muslin, which is used for straining milk; and will he take steps to get this article exempted?

Photo of Mr Charles Waterhouse Mr Charles Waterhouse , Leicester South

The exemption of this muslin is under consideration.