§ 81. Mr. CHARLES DUNCAN
asked the Postmaster-General whether he is aware that on Saturday, 2nd November last, the sorters employed in the Inland Section, and due to leave duty at 6.30 p.m., 8 p.m., and 8.15 p.m., were compulsorily summoned to deal with heavy posting, of circulars, most of which were from the National Insurance Commissioners; and whether he will devise some other means of dealing with such work without depriving officers of their only relief from late duties, and provide that a Government Department whose servants enjoy the Saturday half-holiday should post its correspondence at a time less likely to inflict hardship on Post Office servants?
§ Mr. HERBERT SAMUEL
On the date in question no officers due to leave duty at 8 p.m. and 8.15 p.m. were detained compulsorily, but thirty-eight officers due to leave at 6.30 p.m. were detained until 8.15 p.m. All the other extra duty was performed by volunteers. The circumstances on that date were exceptional, inasmuch as no fewer than 751,000 articles were posted specially, 200,000 of which came from the National Insurance Commission. In addition, three foreign and Colonial mails were received in the evening. The Insurance Commissioners have been good enough to undertake that longer notice of large postings shall be given in future, and arrangements will be made to collect it in smaller batches.