HC Deb 06 December 1911 vol 32 cc1399-400

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he is aware that a number of boys, aged over fourteen, are employed as van boys, messenger boys, and errand boys in connection with places which are not under the Factory and Workshops Act or the Shops Act, and in consequence such boys are worked for excessive hours; and whether he will consider the desirability of extending the protection of either the Factory and Workshops Act and Shops Act to such young persons?


I am aware that a considerable number of boys are employed in occupations of the kind mentioned in the question, and that in some cases long hours are worked by them. As the Noble Lord is aware, the general question of the employment of boys in occupations of this character has been under consideration, but I am not able to give any pledge as to introducing legislation to deal with the hours or other conditions of work. In any event, the conditions are so different from the conditions of the stationary occupations which are regulated by the Factory and Shops Acts that the provisions of those Acts would not, I think, be applicable.