asked the Minister of Labour whether his attention has been drawn to the number of persons in factories where programmes have been modified who are not fully engaged in essential work; and whether, in view of this fact, he proposes to cease or alter the call-up of further personnel for industrial purposes.
The modification of programmes is bound to result on occasion in local and temporary under-employment, but in general the supply of labour remains and is likely to remain substantially below the numbers required for all essential purposes. In the circumstances, no substantial relaxation is immediately possible.
It is quite true that in certain cases, when production is being changed from one thing to another, or when there are cuts, there is slowing down, but I do not think that the extent of it ought to be exaggerated. I have to bear in mind that when you break up a labour force, it is very difficult to get it together again.