HC Deb 10 February 1931 vol 248 cc198-9

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether the joint committee set up by the Board of Trade and the Ministry of Health to inquire into the question of the hygiene of the mercantile marine has yet presented its report?


asked the President of the Board of Trade if he has yet received the report of the Inter-departmental Committee on the Health of the Mercantile Marine?


The joint committee's advice on the various questions referred to it from time to time by the Board of Trade or the Ministry of Health is submitted to the Departments as its consideration of each subject is completed and no general report is published. The inquiry into seamen's mortality statistics is proceeding satisfactorily, but will necessarily take some time to complete. The question of crew spaces has been engaging the special attention of the Board of Trade, of the Joint Committee of the Board of Trade and Ministry of Health, and of the Shipping Federation. Draft instructions to surveyors have been placed before the Merchant Shipping Advisory Committee, and I hope soon to be able to make a statement on the subject.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that, whereas this country leads the world in general sanitation, so far as sanitation on ships is concerned, we are behind Continental countries, and will he proceed further with the investigation?


I could not pronounce on that comparison in reply to a supplementary question, but we are pursuing this matter with all possible speed. I await with great interest the further statement to which the reply refers.