§ 28. Mr. Kenneth Baker
asked the Secretary of State for Employment and Productivity how many industrial civil servants she estimates will be employed by her Department on 31st December, 1968.
On a point of order. I wish to inform the right hon. Lady that the reference in the Question to industrial civil servants should be non-industrial civil servants. I hope that she will be able to answer my Question, as amended, but if she cannot, then I shall be happy to receive her Answer to the Question as printed.
§ Mrs. Castle
I am afraid that the hon. Gentleman will have to be satisfied with my Answer to his Question as printed. It is too late to amend the Answer at such short notice.
The Answer is about 1,100, of whom approximately 200 will be part-time.
§ Mr. Baker
Would the right hon. Lady refresh her memory by referring to the Answer given by the then Minister 1073 of Labour on 19th February of this year when he forecast substantial cuts in the number of civil servants employed in the Department, although it is probably fair to say that he did not anticipate himself being concerned in that run-down of staff?
§ Mrs. Castle
I must certainly plead guilty, in answering the main point of the hon. Gentleman's supplementary question, in that there has been an increase in these figures. On 1st January, 1964, the Department employed 559 industrial staff of whom 81 were part-time workers. I accept that they are much smaller figures. The increase since then almost entirely reflects the continued and considerable expansion in training and retraining in Government training centres and in an increased number of industrial rehabilitation units. This shows that there are often good reasons for an increase in civil servants.