HC Deb 22 November 1888 vol 330 cc1821-2

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty, What new Regulations have been put in force with reference to a system of check measurement in the Royal Dockyards; whether the workmen have any means of ascertaining the exact amount of work which is expected of them; and, whether they are enabled to earn extra wages by exceeding this standard?


No new Regulations on the subject of check measurement have been recently introduced in the Dockyards. The scheme of prices paid for task and job work is not open to the inspection of the workmen; but any of the leading men or workmen, with the sanction of the principal officer of the Department to which they belong, and in the presence of the measurer, are permitted to examine the measurer's account of their work, in order to satisfy themselves that such work has been accurately brought to account. When on day pay workmen do not receive any extra wages for earning more than the usual standard; but when on job and task work they receive the full amount of their earnings. It is quite the exception for men when paid by task to earn less than the usual rate of day pay; but should a man's earnings fall below this standard an inquiry is made into the circumstances, and if found to be extenuating the difference between the actual earnings and the rate of day pay is paid to the workman. Under the job and task system the workmen are able to earn, and are earning, sums considerably in excess of their ordinary wages.


wished to know whether the system had not caused great annoyance in the Dockyards?


replied, that a certain amount of dissatisfaction existed among a limited number of men, who had been mulcted under the system. He believed that the system would work most beneficially in the case of the great mass of the workmen.