§ Mr. ARTHUR HENDERSON
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether Messrs. Pearson, Huggins, and Company, 1522W clothing manufacturers, of Bristol, have given notice under Section 7 of the Trade Boards Act that the Trade Board rate of 3¼d. an hour shall be obligatory on them; whether, if so, the firm is liable under penalties to pay this rate to women workers in their employment; whether he is aware that a number of girls and women employed by this firm, and entitled under the Trade Board determination to receive the minimum rate, are now on strike and allege that they have not received it, and that some of them, since the strike began, have been forwarded sums of money by the firm in settlement of arrears of payment; and what action he proposes to take in the matter?
I am informed by the Secretary to the Tailoring Trade Board that the firm have given notice under Section 7 (b) of the Trade Boards Act that they are willing that the minimum rates of wages which have been fixed by the Tailoring Trade Board should be obligatory on them. As a consequence the firm would, in accordance with that Section, be liable to fine in the event of their not paying wages equivalent to those fixed. No complaint that the firm have failed to comply with the law has been received by the Board of Trade. I am aware that a dispute is in progress, but I have no information as to the allegations mentioned in the question.