§ MR. CHIOZZA MONEY
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Home Department if his attention has been directed to a report on the cutlery trade of Solingen, by Dr. Harold Scurfield, the medical officer of Sheffield, according to which one of the most noteworthy features among the German factories is that it is compulsory for the owners to provide lavatory basins with hot and cold water, shower baths, and clothes lockers for the use of the employees, with the result that the men go home from their work in clean clothes and with clean hands and faces, whereas at one time the Solingen workmen worked under the filthy conditions which frequently obtain at Sheffield; and whether he can promise legislation to increase health and industrial efficiency through the compulsory provision of the means of cleanliness for British work-people.
§ MR. GLADSTONE
Yes, Sir, the attention of the Home Office has been called to this report, and I may say that the conditions of work at Solingen had already been the subject of inquiry by the Home Office in connection with the framing of regulations for the grinding industry. The feature mentioned by my hon. friend, as well as other and more important features in the German factories, are receiving our attention. The provision of washing and cloak-room accommodation has hitherto only been required by law in factories and work-shops in this country where danger to health exists, as for example from the use of poisonous materials. The point is always borne in mind in framing regulations for dangerous trades, and requirements on the subject have been included in a number of the existing codes. I am not prepared, however, to promise legislation to make such provision generally compulsory in all factories and work-shops.
§ MR. CHIOZZA MONEY
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the report referred to in the Question shows that the death-rate among German cutlers is only one-third of that among British cutlers?