HC Deb 10 November 1953 vol 520 c751
9 and 10. Mr. Bowden

asked the Minister of Labour (1) the number of investigators employed by his Department during the present year calling on selected households to ascertain household living costs;

(2) the amount it is anticipated will be paid to householders during the present year as a fee for supplying household living costs information.

Mr. Watkinson

No staff have been specially engaged by my Department to act as investigators. The collection of information is a part-time job and much of the work is necessarily done outside office hours. The number of staff in my Department who have acted as investigators during the present year is 1,119.

It is anticipated that £30,000 will be paid during the present financial year in fees to members of households supplying information on their expenditure.

Mr. Bowden

Is the Minister satisfied that the method of selecting certain households for this information is an accurate picture, and what is the fee paid to each household?

Mr. Watkinson

I think we are quite satisfied. The hon. Member might like to know that the amount we are paying is rather larger than we had anticipated, because the inquiry has gone a good deal better than we expected. More households have been willing to co-operate and, generally speaking, the whole thing has gone very well indeed, as it should do, as two million workers' wages depend directly on it. I think that the fee paid is £1.

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