HL Deb 04 June 1964 vol 258 cc591-2

3.24 p.m.

Order of the day for the Third Reading read.


My Lords, I beg to move that this Bill be now read a third time.

Moved, That the Bill be now read 3a.—(Lord Grenfell.)


My Lords, might I, on the Third Reading of the Bill, add just a few words to what the noble Lord has said. Although this Bill is useful, I am sure that the whole House recognises that it has made only a small contribution towards solving a big problem—indeed, all it has done is to raise the status of a group of women who have hitherto been unqualified nurses. I feel that noble Lords on both sides of this House will agree with me that we should not allow another opportunity to pass in this House without focusing attention on the problems of these women. On the radio last week the Government had to come to the country and ask nurses and midwives to resume their professional occupation. They asked them to come into an arduous profession which sapped their physical strength—and their mental strength I might add—but they did not mention the word "remuneration".

I would only say that we shall not solve this problem unless we recognise that these women should be treated as key workers. In no circumstances would the Government appeal for key workers in industry without mentioning remuneration. Unhappily, the nineteenth century attitude still appears to be here. We regard nurses, midwives, and, indeed, all categories, as people who are dedicated to a vocation; and the community is prepared to exploit them as such. Until we recognise that these people must have some mention of their material needs, and concern for their material needs, little Bills of this kind will not solve a very great problem.

On Question, Bill read 3a


My Lords, in moving that this Bill do now pass I should like to thank the noble Baroness and noble Lords for the interest which they have taken in this Bill, and also to thank noble Lords in all parts of the House who have given it such a smooth passage through the House. I am sure that the words of the noble Baroness will be most carefully studied. I must admit that I fully agree with them. I beg to move that the Bill do now pass.

Moved, That the Bill do now pass.—(Lord Grenfell.)

On Question, Bill passed.