HC Deb 17 June 1924 vol 174 cc1956-7W

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether women writing assistants are to form part of the complement of the clerical staff at Royal Clarence Yard, Gosport, Royal William Yard, Plymouth, and Royal Victoria Yard, Deptford, in connection with the Admiralty: under what circumstances are these writing assistants being admitted, bearing in mind that the work they will be engaged upon is being performed by temporary ex-service men and can in no way be stated to be work appropriate to women; and whether, in view of the large number of temporary ex-service men in a precarious position, he will cancel the inclusion of the writing assistant class into the clerical staffs of the victualling, dock, and naval store yards?


I have been asked to reply. The answer to the first part of the question is in the affirmative. The approved post-War complements of the victualling yards named, like those of the dockyards (including the Naval Store Department), provide for a certain number of posts normally to be filled, under normal conditions, by writing assistants. Though the work to be performed by these writing assistants can be, and in many cases is being, performed by ex-service men, it is work which has been definitely decided to be work appropriate to women. It is not possible to vary the decision by which posts for writing assistants were included in the complements referred to, but it is clearly laid down that no writing assistant is actually to be appointed in any case where her appointment would displace an ex-service man.