Oral Answers to Questions — Soap

– in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 27th November 1946.

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Photo of Mr Charles Hale Mr Charles Hale , Oldham 12:00 am, 27th November 1946

asked the Minister of Food whether he is now prepared to authorise a special allowance of soap to persons employed as spinners in the cotton industry, in cases in which there is no adequate washing accommodation provided at the mill.

Photo of Dr Edith Summerskill Dr Edith Summerskill , Fulham West

My inquiries into the proposal of my hon. Friend are not yet complete, but I will circulate a full reply in the OFFICIAL REPORT as soon as possible.

Photo of Mr Peter Freeman Mr Peter Freeman , Newport (Monmouthshire/Gwent)

asked the Minister of Food whether he will allocate an extra ration of soap to coal merchants, engaged in actually delivering coal, in view of the difficulties caused personally, and in the homes of those concerned.

Photo of Dr Edith Summerskill Dr Edith Summerskill , Fulham West

Yes, Sir, if the coal merchant provides washing facilities on the job for himself and his men. I am afraid supplies do not make it possible to grant extra soap to individuals for use at home.

Photo of Mr Peter Freeman Mr Peter Freeman , Newport (Monmouthshire/Gwent)

Is my hon. Friend aware that many coal merchants are not able to provide such facilities as they are small men employing only one or two workers or often doing the work themselves and in those cases they cannot obtain such facilities? Are they not on the same basis as coalminers, trimmers and tippers and thus entitled to similar benefits?

Photo of Dr Edith Summerskill Dr Edith Summerskill , Fulham West

I recognise that, but if we made this concession we would be granting an extra personal ration and we do not agree with that. It causes friction and it is difficult to reconcile it with the treatment of other workers.

Photo of Lieut-Commander Joseph Braithwaite Lieut-Commander Joseph Braithwaite , Holderness

Would it not be better to supply coal to the soap manufacturers?