§ 12. Mr. T. WILLIAMS
asked the Minister of Labour what instructions were given to the Government representatives to the International Labour Office Conference at Geneva regarding hours of labour?
§ Mr. E. BROWN
It is not possible within the limits of an answer to a question to deal with the instructions given to the Government delegates, particularly in view of the complicated situation which arose as the result of developments at the conference.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether these instructions 1249 are instructions to support a 40-hours convention, or to support a convention for a number of specified trades?
§ Mr. BROWN
There are instructions on points of general principle. The delegates have to judge on matters of detail as they arise from day to day. As I have said, the matters involved in this conference are so complicated that I could not possibly give a fair answer on all these points within the limits of a reply to a Parliamentary question.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
Can the right hon. Gentleman say why the Government representatives have felt disposed to oppose any suggestion of a reduction of hours?
§ Sir PERCY HARRIS
Will the right hon. Gentleman also consider embodying these instructions in a White Paper, so that the country and the House may know exactly what the policy of the Government is on this question?
§ Sir W. BRASS
Can the right hon. Gentleman say how many times the Labour Government were asked to ratify the Washington Hours Convention and refused to do so?