HC Deb 22 April 1909 vol 3 cc1670-1

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he has now considered the point raised by the decision of a Marlborough-street magistrate on 26th February, whereby outworkers employing any assistants were held to be contractors and thereby deprived of the protection afforded by the particulars section; whether the administration of this section, in so far as outworkers are concerned, is now in abeyance; and whether, in view of the time likely to elapse before a decision of the High Court can be given, with the chance of the magistrate's view being upheld, he can see his way to amend the statutory order in such a way that its application to this class of worker may be placed beyond all doubt?

The SECRETARY of STATE for the HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. Herbert Gladstone)

Yes, Sir, the question of appealing against the decision of the magistrates has been considered, and I am advised that it is very doubtful whether an appeal would succeed. An alternative course would be that suggested in the question, namely, to amend the Order so as expressly to include these cases; and this is now under my consideration. I should add that it is not the case, as suggested in the question, that the administration of the section, so far as outworkers are concerned, is in abeyance, as a result of the magistrate's decision.