§ MR. HUDSON (Newcastle-on-Tyne)
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether the Midland Railway Company are compelling a large number of their platelayers, who are from thirty to forty years of age, and who have been many years in the employ of the company, now to join the Midland Friendly Society although many of them are already members of other friendly societies; and, if so, whether, as the company did not exercise their prerogative under the Midland Friendly Society's Act, he will take the matter up.
§ MR. CHURCHILL
The Board of Trade have no information on this subject, but I understand that the Midland Railway Friendly Society comes within the purview of the Departmental Committee now considering the superannuation and similar funds of railway companies. I would suggest that the hon. Member should bring the matters to which his Question refers to the notice of that Committee.
§ MR. HUDSON
Is not this a matter of administration, seeing that this friendly society got its powers by Act of Parliament? Will the right hon. Gentleman see that the men do not suffer?
§ MR. CHURCHILL
suggested that the best thing would be for the hon. Member to put the case before the Committee which was now investigating the Question. If, however, there was any element of urgency perhaps the hon. Member would communicate with him privately.
§ MR. WARDLE
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that these men are being discharged now if they do not join this particular fund?
§ [No Answer was returned.]