HC Deb 13 March 1917 vol 91 cc906-7

asked the Minister of Munitions whether his attention has been drawn to the prosecution at the Caxton Munitions Tribunal of Mrs. Skipper and Miss Brown, 5, Pear Street Cottages, Pear Road, Hounslow, for the second time, refusing to work on C.E.; whether he is aware that they were fined £3 each in addition to the previous fine of 15s. each, and that both have also suffered five weeks' unemployment, their leaving certificates having been withheld; whether he is aware that Miss Brown is only seventeen years of age, although she gave her age as eighteen in order to obtain employment, and that she produced a medical certificate that, in the opinion of her own doctor, she was unfit for work in C.E.; and if he will give instructions that these prosecutions are to cease?


It is true that the women in question were prosecuted a second time and were fined as stated. When the second complaint was lodged the women were invited to continue at work other than C.E. work. They gave no notice to terminate their employment and made no request for their leaving certificates. Their leaving certificates were, in fact, issued to them voluntarily on the day of the second prosecution. Miss Brown gave her age as eighteen on entering the factory in September, 1916, and her written statement to that effect was put in evidence. It is true that the girl produced a medical certificate from her own doctor dated later than the certificate issued by the factory medical officer, which the tribunal accepted as valid. In reply to the last part of the question, I cannot undertake to give instructions for these prosecutions to cease.


What is "C.E."?


Compound explosives.