Women (Shopping Facilities)

Oral Answers to Questions — National War Effort – in the House of Commons on 1st October 1942.

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Photo of Mr Ellis Smith Mr Ellis Smith , Stoke-on-Trent Stoke

asked the Minister of Labour whether he is aware that women resident in the North Staffordshire area are having difficulties over shopping which affects their hours of production and that they are concerned at the effect on the war effort; and can steps be taken to meet the needs of the women?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

Machinery has been set up with the co-operation of the Ministry of Food to deal locally with shopping problems, as they come to the knowledge either of the local Welfare Officer of the Ministry of Labour or the District Food Officer. This machinery provides for consultation with all the interests concerned, including the retailers, shop assistants, factory managements and trade unions. I am not aware of the special difficulty in North Staffordshire, but if my hon. Friend will send me particulars I will look into it.

Photo of Mr Rhys Davies Mr Rhys Davies , Westhoughton

In considering the difficulties of shopping for housewives, will my right hon. Friend not forget the harassed shop assistants?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

I think the Shop Assistants' Union has expressed appreciation more than once of the care which has been taken.