HC Deb 04 August 1924 vol 176 cc2550-1W

asked the Home Secretary whether he is satisfied that the provision of a disinfecting station at Liverpool is the best means of protecting British workers against infection from material which contains the germs of anthrax; and whether, seeing that this disinfecting station cannot possibly protect dock workers handling such material, he will undertake to explore thoroughly the first means of protection suggested by general conference of the International Labour Organisation of the League of Nations, 1919, namely, the disinfection of material infected with anthrax spores in the country exporting such material?


The Home Office has throughout been fully alive to the desirability of arranging, if practicable, for disinfection in the country of export; and with this object in view, immediately after the Home Office Committee on Anthrax reported in 1918, representations were made to the Government of India, from which country the greater part of the infected material comes. The Government of India, however, have not seen their way to arrange for disinfection in India and we have therefore been thrown back on the alternative of providing for disinfection at the port of entry in this country. Under the arrangements in force at Liverpool the material is conveyed direct from the ship to the disinfecting station, so that the risk to the dock workers is reduced to a minimum.