HC Deb 10 June 1937 vol 324 cc1961-5
69. Mr. W. Joseph Stewart

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury the number of Royal Commissions and Committees which have been set up during the life of this Parliament and the subjects which they were appointed to consider?

Lieut.-Colonel Colville

Two Royal Commissions and 31 other Commissions and Committees have been appointed during the present Parliament. I am circulating in the OFFICIAL REPORT particulars of the subjects which they were appointed to consider.

Following are the particulars: ROYAL COMMISSIONS AND COMMITTEES (excluding Standing, Statutory and Advisory Committees, Departmental Committees composed exclusively of Officials and Committees of the Committee of Imperial Defence) which have been set up during the life of the present Parliament and the subjects which they were appointed to consider. Name of Commission or Committee, Object of Inquiry, Date of Appointment and Remarks. Safety in Mines (Royal Commission): To inquire whether the safety and health of mine workers can be better ensured by extending or modifying the principles or general provisions of the Coal Mines Act, 1911, or the arrangements for its administration.—December, 1935. Marriage Laws (Scotland): To inquire into and report upon the law of Scotland relating to the constitution of marriage and to recommend what changes, if any, are desirable.—December, 1935.—Reported December, 1936. Farm Workers in Scotland: To examine the existing system of employment and remuneration of farm workers; and to report whether any action is desirable for regulating the remuneration or the conditions of employment of these workers.—January, 1936.—Reported June, 1936. Name of Commission or Committee, Object of Inquiry, Date of Appointment and Remarks. Employment of Young Persons in Unregulated Occupation: To inquire into the hours of employment of young persons under 18 years of age (not being subject to the provisions as to hours of employment contained in the Shops Act, 1934, or the Factory and Workshop Act, 1901) and to advise whether it may be desirable in the interests of the young persons concerned to regulate such employment.—January, 1936.—Reported January, 1937. Police Clothing (Scotland): To consider the possibility and expediency of arrangements being made for the pooling of contracts for police clothing of standard material and design and to report.—January, 1936.—Reported January, 1937. Child Adoption: To inquire into the methods pursued by adoption societies or other agencies engaged in arranging for the adoption of children and to report whether any, and if so what, measures should be taken in the public interest to supervise or control their activities.—January, 1936. Compulsory Insurance: To consider and report whether any, and if so what, changes in the existing law relating to the carrying on of the business of insurance are desirable in the light of statutory provisions relating to compulsory insurance against third party risks and by employers against liability to their workmen.—February, 1936. Structural Precautions against Air Attack: To consider and report as to the nature of material damage likely to result from the dropping of bombs during hostile air attack, and on the extent to which it might be possible to apply protective measures to buildings and provide structural protection for occupants of buildings.—February, 1936. Circuit Towns: To review the present distribution of Assize facilities, and report whether any further town should be added to those already visited, or any town at present visited should be omitted.—March, 1936.—Reported July, 1936. Quarter Sessions: To consider and report what functions, not at present within the jurisdiction of Quarter Sessions, should be included in that jurisdiction
  1. (a) under existing circumstances;
  2. (b) if and when it is enacted that all Chairmen of Quarter Sessions shall be legally qualified.
—March, 1936.—Reported July, 1936. Shorthand Writers (Supreme Court): To consider the technical and administrative problems involved in the establishment of a system for taking an official shorthand note in the Supreme Court, and to report in what manner they can best be solved.—March, 1936.—Reported July, 1936.
Name of Commission or Committee, Object of Inquiry, Date of Appointment and Remarks. Fixed Trusts: To inquire into Fixed Trusts in all their aspects, and to report what action, if any, is desirable in the public interest.—March, 1936.—Reported July, 1936. British Films: To consider the position of British films, having in mind the approaching expiry of the Cinematograph Films Act, 1927, and to advise whether any, and if so what, measures are still required in the public interest to promote the production, renting and exhibition of such films.—March, 1936.—Reported November, 1936. Mui-tsai: To investigate and report on the whole question of mui-tsai in Hong Kong and Malaya.—March, 1936.—Reported January, 1937. Insurance of Ships: To inquire into the present system of insuring hulls of vessels in the light of recent judicial comments on the insured values of ships for total loss, and to report whether any change of practice is desirable and possible.—April, 1936.—Reported December, 1936. Re-habilitation of Persons injured by Accidents: To inquire into the arrangements at present in operation with a view to the restoration of the working capacity of persons injured by accidents and to report as to what improvements or developments are desirable.—April, 1936.—Interim Report May, 1937. Poor Persons—Court Facilities (Scotland): To inquire into and report upon the existing law and practice regulating the facilities available to poor persons appearing as parties before the Civil Courts and as accused persons before the Criminal Courts, and the provision at present made there under for the representation of such persons by Counsel and Agents.—May, 1936.—Reported March, 1937. Uniform of Chief Constables: To inquire into and report upon the subject of the uniform of Chief Constables of Counties and Boroughs in England and Wales.—May, 1936. Road Transport: To examine the present position in regard to the regulation of wages and conditions of service of persons employed in connection with the carriage of goods by road and to make recommendations as to the action which it is desirable to take—July, 1936.—Reported April, 1937. Metropolitan Police Court District—Summary Jurisdiction: To inquire into the exercise of summary jurisdiction in the Metropolitan Police Court District including the distribution of work among the various Metropolitan Police Courts and the Juvenile Courts and the allocation of functions to these Courts and the Petty Sessional Courts respectively, and to report what changes, if any, are required.—July, 1936. Name of Commission or Committee, Object of Inquiry, Date of Appointment and Remarks. Palestine (Royal Commission): To ascertain the underlying causes of the disturbance which broke out in Palestine in the middle of April; to inquire into the manner in which the Mandate for Palestine is being implemented in relation to the obligations of the Mandatory towards the Arabs and the Jews respectively; and to ascertain whether, upon a proper construction of the terms of the Mandate, either the Arabs or the Jews have any legitimate grievances upon account of the way in which the Mandate has been, or is being implemented; and if the commission is satisfied that any such grievances are well founded, to make recommendations for their removal and for the prevention of their recurrence.—August, 1936. Veterinary Education: To review the facilities available for veterinary education in Great Britain in relation to the probable future demand for qualified veterinary surgeons and to report thereon, and in particular to make recommendations as to the provision which should be made from public funds in the five years 1937–42 in aid of the maintenance expenses of institutions providing veterinary education.—November, 1936. Scottish Administrative Arrangements: To inquire into and report upon the duties of the Scottish Office and other Scottish Administrative Departments under the control of the Secretary of State for Scotland, the distribution of those duties between Departments, the position of the Departments in relation to each other and to the Secretary of State, and the arrangements under which liaison is maintained between Edinburgh and London, in the conduct of public business; and to recommend what changes. if any, should be made, keeping in view the prospective concentration of Departments in one building in Edinburgh.—November, 1936. Share-pushing: To consider the operations commonly known as share-pushing and share-hawking and similar activities and to report, what, if any, action is desirable.—December, 1936. Firedamp Detector Regulations: To inquire into the working of the Coal Mines General Regulations (Firedamp Detector), 1935, and to make recommendations.—December, 1936. Examinations for Engineers: To consider the present system under which candidates for Certificates as Engineers in merchant ships are examined by the Board of Trade.—January, 1937. Night Baking: To inquire into the effects likely to ensue
  1. (1) to those engaged in the bread baking and flour confectionery industry, and
  2. (2) to the public,
in the event of the abolition by legislation of the practice of night baking now prevalent in the industry; and to consider and report whether or not such legislation would be desirable.—February, 1937.
Name of Commission or Committee, Object of Inquiry, Date of Appointment and Remarks. Cardroom Workers (Respiratory Illness Compensation): To consider and report whether an equitable and workable scheme can be devised for providing compensation in the case of persons who, after employment for a substantial period in cardrooms or certain other dusty parts of cotton spinning mills, become or have become disabled by respiratory illness as indicated in the Report of the Departmental Committee on Dust in Cardrooms.—March, 5937. Holidays with Pay: To investigate the extent to which holidays with pay are given to employed work-people, and the possibility of extending the provision of such holidays by statutory enactment or otherwise, and to make recommendations.—March, 5937. Abortion: To inquire into the prevalence of abortion, and the present law relating thereto, and to consider what steps can be taken by more effective enforcement of the law or otherwise to secure the reduction of maternal mortality and morbidity arising from this cause.—May, 1937. Army Officers (Shortage of): To inquire into the causes of the present shortage of officers in the Army and to recommend measures to remedy it, and also to consider whether the present system of promotion from the ranks is working satisfactorily and whether it can be extended.—May, 1937. Corporal Punishment: To consider the question of corporal punishment in the penal systems of England and Wales and Scotland; to review the law and practice relating to the use of this method of punishment by Juvenile Courts, by other Courts and as a penalty for certain offences committed by prisoners; and to report what changes are necessary or desirable.—May, 1937. Rent Restrictions Acts: To inquire into and report upon the present working of the Acts and to advise what steps should be taken to continue or terminate or amend these Acts.—May, 1937.
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