HC Deb 12 June 1893 vol 13 c790

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for War whether, when the minimum rate of wages of "labourers" in certain Departments of the Admiralty and War Office is increased, artisans and skilled workmen will be included in the term "labourers;" and, if so, will he state what are the trades on which the men whose wages are too low are employed?


Artisans and skilled workmen are distinguished from labourers, who, in their turn, are divided into "skilled" and "unskilled." The decision of the Government has special reference particularly to the latter class of men, whose wages in certain cases are rated at figures which, in the opinion of the Government, are lower than are paid by the better class of private employers, do not afford the means of proper subsistence, and do not offer sufficient incentive to the men to discharge their duty with zeal and diligence. In the confident hope that the Public Service will realise the advantages that have followed like liberality in private enterprise, the Government has determined to lift the standard minimum rating, discriminating, of course, according to the nature of the employment, the local conditions, and the capacity of the workers.