Lift Attendants

Oral Answers to Questions — Government Departments – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 21st March 1945.

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Photo of Mr William Brown Mr William Brown , Rugby 12:00 am, 21st March 1945

asked the Minister of Works what proportion of the lift attendants operating lifts in Government offices under his control are unestablished and unpensionable.

Photo of Mr Duncan Sandys Mr Duncan Sandys , Lambeth Norwood

All regular full-time lift attendants in Government Departments belong to an industrial grade and do not qualify for establishment or pension.

Photo of Mr William Brown Mr William Brown , Rugby

Does that mean that, however long a man serves the Government, either in this House or in some Government Department, it may be for the whole of his life, in no circumstances can he have a penny of pension at the end of his career? If the answer to that is "Yes," what is the Minister going to do about it?

Photo of Mr Duncan Sandys Mr Duncan Sandys , Lambeth Norwood

My hon. Friend knows as well as I do that the conditions of employment are negotiated with the trade unions through the Government Joint Trades Council. If he wishes to raise this wider issue of principle affecting conditions of pay in the Civil Service, he should address his question to the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Photo of Sir Percy Harris Sir Percy Harris , Bethnal Green South West

Does it not make the State look bad as an employer of labour when men who have been working for over 40 years are dismissed without any consideration? Do not the Ministry want to be model employers, and cannot my right hon. Friend make representations to the Treasury?

Photo of Mr Duncan Sandys Mr Duncan Sandys , Lambeth Norwood

This is a question which affects the whole industrial grade of State employees. It is a very wide issue and is not a matter which can be dealt with on the basis of one particular category.

Photo of Mr William Brown Mr William Brown , Rugby

Is it not possible for the Minister of Works, who is responsible for the lift attendant who left here last week after 45 years' service without a penny, to organise a trade union among his fellow Ministers to impress upon the Treasury that this sort of thing ought not to happen in England?

Photo of Mr Thomas Levy Mr Thomas Levy , Elland

Is it not true that employees under private enterprise get far better treatment than employees under the State?