HC Deb 15 February 1922 vol 150 cc1001-2
41. Lieut.-Colonel POWNALL

asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware of the feeling of resentment in the general body of the population caused by the maintenance of the wages of its employés by the Poplar Borough Council above the rates ruling under trade union agreements and in accordance with the scales based upon the cost of living; and whether he can take any action to remove this cause of unrest?


I have no power to take any action in the matter to which the hon. Member refers; the remedy in such matters as this lies in the hands of the municipal electors themselves.

42. Sir R. BLAIR

asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware that the Poplar Borough Council has decided that no man who is not a member of a trade union shall be employed by it, that no man whose trade union card is six weeks in arrears shall be taken on, and that men in arrear without justification shall he put off at once; whether these regulations apply to works for the relief of unemployment instituted by the Poplar Borough Council; and, if so, whether such a limitation as to the persons to be employed is permitted in the case of contributions towards such works out of moneys granted by Parliament for the provision of work for the unemployed generally?


I understand that the facts stated in the first part of the question are substantially correct. With regard to the remainder of the question, I am informed that the men employed on works in respect of which grants are made by the Unemployed Grants Committee are engaged through the Employment Exchange, and that there is no discrimination between those who have trade union tickets and those who have not.

43. Sir R. BLAIR

asked the Minister of Health whether the Poplar Board of Guardians have failed, notwithstanding the gradual reduction in the cost of living and the agreements arrived at between employers and trade unions as to the lowering of salaries and wages, in accordance with, such agreements, to reduce the salaries and wages of any of their officers or employés except in the case of those coming under the provisions of the Civil Service Award No. 102; and whether the salaries or wages of any officer or employé not coming under the Civil Service award are a charge upon the Common Poor Fund?


I understand that the guardians have postponed the reduction of salaries and wages of employés not coining under the Civil Service award, but that this question is to be considered at their next meeting. I am, however, informed that practically the whole of the administrative relief and institution staffs are covered by the Civil Service award, and steps will be taken to limit the charge on the Common Poor Fund in respect of salaries or wages which are not so covered.