§ 53. Major HILLS
asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether he is aware that, in order to obtain approval, under the Trade Disputes and Trade Unions Act, the Federation of Women Civil Servants has been compelled to delete from its constitution one of its objects, which was to secure the removal of the civil and political disabilities of women; under what Clause of the Act was this action taken; whether it is appreciated that women seeking to enter the Civil Service are suffering under legal disabilities which differentiate their recruitment and pay from that of men; and whether he is aware that this application of the Act will have the effect of preventing women civil servants working to obtain equality with men in their profession?
The answer to the first part of the question is in the affirmative; and, to the second part, that this action was taken under Section 5 of the Trade Disputes and Trade Unions Act, 1927, and the Civil Service (Approved Associations) Regulations, 1927, made in pursuance of that Act. I do not know what the hon. and gallant Member has in mind in referring to the legal disabilities of women in respect of their employment in the Civil Service. In any event, the action taken under the Section referred to does not prevent the federation named in the question, or any other association of civil servants, from taking steps to influence or affect the remuneration and conditions of employment of its own members.