3. Mr. David Adams
asked the Secretary for Mines whether he is aware that of the salary of the personnel of the assistant coal officers and the liaison officers, totalling £12,700 per annum, the sum of 5,620 is paid to retired and pensioned home, or Colonial civil servants; and, as persons thrown out of employment and possessing excellent qualifications for such work should have preference, what action he proposes in the matter?
§ Mr. Lloyd
I assume that the hon. Member is referring to divisional coal officers and coal liaison officers, and not to assistant divisional coal officers. As I informed him in answer to a question on 3oth November, these officers were selected and familiarised with their wartime duties in peace time in view of their capability for the duties required of them in war time. It would not be in the public interest to replace officers so selected and trained by other persons without experience in work of this nature.
Does the Minister agree that, all things being equal, unemployed persons ought to have preference?