§ 28. Mr. Chetwynd
asked the Minister of Labour if he will indicate the types of articles manufactured and repaired in the Remploy factories of the Disabled Persons Employment Corporation; the sources of the contracts for the production of these articles; the numbers of such contracts placed direct by the Government; and how far there has been a change since 1945 in his policy that the employment activities of these undertakings are directed as far as possible to the production of articles in regular demand for 782 Government and other public purposes and away from the production of fancy or semi-luxury articles dependent for their sale upon a charitable public, as recommended by the Tomlinson Committee.
§ Mr. Isaacs
In answer to the first part of the Question, I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave to the hon. Member for Oldham (Mr. Hale) on 2nd December last. As in any commercial undertaking the Corporation's contracts come from a variety of sources but 33 contracts are from Government Departments. There has been no change in the policy since 1945.
§ Mr. Chetwynd
Would my right hon. Friend do his utmost to speed the production of constructive work in these factories, rather than work which is merely to occupy the men's time?
§ Mr. Isaacs
We have to look at whether the work is required, apart from its being constructive. For example, there was a reference previously to the making of Christmas crackers—that may not be constructive; in some ways crackers are destructive—but they are required, and it is useful work for these people to be engaged upon. However, there is a complete list of the industries in the answer to the Question to which I have referred, and we are anxious that these people should have work of a continuous character.