§ 60. Major HUNT
asked the Prime Minister whether his attention has been called to the employment of Chinese labourers for mending roads in Berkshire; whether they are so employed in other counties; and if he can say whether it is the policy of the Government to allow the employment of Chinese labourers in this country for unskilled work?
The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of LABOUR (Mr. Bridgman)
I have been asked to reply to this question. I understand that, with the consent of the union concerned, a small number of Chinese seamen who are temporarily unable to follow their usual vocation are employed on this work, and 2091 that they are paid the full trade union rates. It is not the policy of the Government to introduce Chinese labour into this country, but in the present case the men were here already, and unemployed, and British labour was not available.
§ Mr. MORRELL
Will the hon. Gentleman say whether any Government Department acted as agent in the introduction of these Chinese labourers?
§ Mr. BRIDGEMAN
I cannot answer that question without notice, but the point is that they were not introduced by the Government; they were here already, and being unemployed and there being no British labour available, they were employed.