§ 28. Mr. Sorensen
asked the Secretary of State for India how many women are now employed in mining; what are the present rates of payment; and whether steps can now be taken to bring such employment to an end.
§ Mr. Amery
I am asking the Government of India for up-to-date figures of the number of women employed in mining. Rates of pay for women working underground are the same as for men. They vary according to a number of factors and average about 12 annas per day in the types of work on which women are mainly employed. In addition they receive attendance bonus and grain concession of an average value of 6 annas per day. The question of the continued employment of women underground is 2210 under the Government of India's consideration and I expect shortly to be informed of their conclusions.
§ Mr. Sorensen
Does it not work out that the women, in fact, get from 1d. an hour upwards for their work? Could the right hon. Gentleman say, in general terms, whether there has been a reduction in the number of women employed?
§ Sir H. Williams
Will my right hon. Friend bear in mind the view of women Members of Parliament, that women should take part in every occupation?
§ Dr. Edith Summerskill
Can the right hon. Gentleman answer a question which I have asked him on two other occasions—whether expectant mothers are prohibited from going underground?
§ Mr. Stephen
Are representatives of these women included in the industrial group coming to this country?
§ Mr. Sorensen
May we take it that women can, and do, take their babies down the mines a month after birth?
§ Earl Winterton
Are not the owners of these mines among the most prominent supporters of Congress, and ought they not, therefore, to be very friendly with hon. Gentlemen on the Labour benches?