§ 10. Mr. BARNES
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he can now state the result of the inquiry into the alleged infraction of the Fair-Wages Clause by Messrs. Dixon Brothers and Hutchison?
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
Inquiry has been made, and it is not considered that there has been any violation of the Fair-Wages Clause in Admiralty contracts.
§ 11. Mr. BARNES
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether, in connection with the strike of electrical workers on the Clyde, he can now state the result of the inquiry into the alleged violation of the Fair-Wages Clause by the Government contractors in employing apprentices to perform electrical work instead of fully qualified men at the proper rates of wages; and whether the Admiralty is satisfied that no breach of the Clause has been made to the benefit of the employers and the prejudice of the workmen?
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
As a result of the inquiry it appears that during the progress of certain work to complete the "New Zealand" the electricians of the district struck work with a view to obtaining an additional ½d. an hour in their rate of wages. It is understood that the Fairfield Company offered to concede this demand so far as the men engaged on this ship were concerned, in order to avoid interruption in the work; but that their offer was declined in the absence of a similar concession throughout the district. The ship had already been delayed, and it was important that there should be no further delay. The company there- 2050 fore employed fourteen apprentices to do the work, eight of whom were in their fourth or fifth year, and five in their third year. No boys were employed all night after having worked during the day, and only some of the older apprentices employed during the day were allowed to work overtime up till The whole of the work so carried out was finished and tested to the entire satisfaction of the Admiralty representatives. In all the circumstances, the Admiralty do not consider it necessary to take any further action in the matter.