§ Mr. J. BELL
asked the Minister of Pensions whether he is aware that the 943W Central Substitution Committee of his Department is irregularly constituted: that, as a protest, the trade union representing the majority of the female staff has refused to sanction its representative taking her seat on the Committee; that the chief complaint against the constitution of the Committee is that a non-union body representing a small minority of the staff holds two seats to the one seat given to the majority organisation of the women and ex-service men, respectively, and that consequently the decisions of the Committee are regarded as unrepresentative and unfair; and whether he will settle the matter by replacing one of the representatives of the non-union body by an ex-service representative of the Civil Service Union?
§ Mr. MACPHERSON
The Committee to which the hon. Member refers is not a "Central" Substitution Committee as contemplated in the Report of the Lytton Committee. It is anad hoc Committee appointed to assist the Department. The staff representatives, consisting of two ex-service men and two women, were drawn from the three Associations having the largest membership. It is the fact that the representative of one of the Associations has hitherto declined to take her seat on the Committee as she was not satisfied with its constitution. On the other hand, no request for representation has been received from the Civil Service Union or any other association, and, as the Committee's investigations are now almost completed, I see no reason for altering its composition.