§ 9. Sir COOPER RAWSON
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he 1662 will arrange for orders of a portion of the War Department's requirements of socks for the troops to be regularly allocated through branches of the Red Cross Society for disabled ex-service men who have been trained for knitting and who possess the necessary machines, but are unable to obtain orders?
§ The FINANCIAL SECRETARY to the WAR OFFICE (Mr. Duff Cooper)
I will carefully consider any practicable scheme on the lines indicated by my hon. Friend that may be laid before me by the Red Cross Society; but I fear there is little prospect of the society being able to compete in price, for socks produced in the manner suggested, with trade firms manufacturing in large quantities by modern factory methods.
§ Sir COOPER RAWSON
Is price the only consideration, having regard to the fact that these men have been specially trained for this work and have been supplied with the machines and are at present, in many cases, receiving unemployment pay?
§ Mr. COOPER
No, Sir. Price is not the only consideration, but the War Department cannot make large reductions in favour of these men as against private firms, which can produce them very much more cheaply.
Sir F. HALL
Will my hon. Friend bring the matter closely before his right hon. Friend. With reference to the question of price, does he recognise that these men have to he kept one way or another, and is it not better to give them work even at a higher price?