HC Deb 01 May 1913 vol 52 cc1372-3
78. Mr. W. THORNE

asked the Postmaster-General whether, in view of the fact that the terms of reference to the Norton Committee were to inquire into complaints from the staff arising from the reorganisation in the Central Telegraph Office; that the Committee declined to discuss any matter with the staffs' representatives which had not previously been the subject of complaint to the authorities; that the question of refreshments in the galleries between 9 a.m. and 2.30 p.m. had not been a subject of complaint from the staff nor discussed by their representatives before the Norton Committee; and, having regard to the fact that this question did not come within the purview of the Committee, will he, in view of all the circumstances, direct that this Clause of the Committee's Report shall not become operative?


Under the terms of their reference the Committee were to consider not only the effect upon the staff of certain improvements in organisation which had been made, but also whether, having regard to the efficiency of the service and the proper consideration of the staff, any further changes were desirable. The practice of consuming food in the galleries naturally came under the notice of the Committee in connection with complaints as to the inadequacy of certain meal reliefs; and I am satisfied that the restrictions subsequently introduced on their recommendation are desirable from an administrative point of view and do not cause any real hardship to the staff. The Postal Telegraph Clerks' Association has made representations to me on the subject, but the members of the Committee are agreed that their recommendation was necessary and that effect should be given to it.