§ MR. HUDSON (Newcastle-on-Tyne)
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Admiralty if he is aware that the firm of Davidson and Co., Limited, Sirocco Works, Belfast, insist upon all men when entering their employment signing an agreement to cancel membership with any labourers' society or any union of which they are members, and that they shall not join any trade union while employed by this firm; can he say what is the class and the amount of work Davidson and Co., Limited, do as contractors to the Admiralty; and whether the refusal to their workmen of the right to combine in legal organisation disqualifies the firm to remain on the Admiralty list as a contractor to His Majesty's Government.
§ MR. EDMUND ROBERTSON
No information to the effect stated in the first part of the Question has reached me. The firm in question holds contracts for the supply of ventilating fans, but only to a comparatively small extent. In accordance with the Resolution of the House all Admiralty contractors are required to pay the wages current in the district for competent workmen. The Admiralty have no power to go beyond this.
§ MR. LONSDALE (Armagh, Mid.)
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that Davidson and Co. pay skilled labourers trades union rates, and that the unskilled labourers earn from 40s. to 50s. a week, often more than skilled labourers.