§ Captain McEWEN
asked the Post master-General whether he is aware that on 17th September last 10 unemployed men in North Berwick were given green cards by the local Employment Exchange and told to report on a certain date to the foreman of a firm engaged on work connected with the Post Office and that, on reporting themselves on the date in question, they were informed that no work was to be had as other men had been brought in from Haddington by motor; and whether, when giving out 2156W contracts, he can include a clause giving preference to local labour?
§ Sir K. WOOD
I am informed that the application to the North Berwick Employment Exchange was due to a regrettable misunderstanding on the part of the representatives of the contractor concerned. The work to be done covered a wide tract and only a small portion of it lay within the North Berwick area and the men brought from Haddington had been previously employed by the contractor on similar work. It is not, of course, possible to dictate to contractors the source from which they should recruit labour, but I am glad to say that the firm concerned in this case fully accepts the Post Office view that local labour should be employed as far as possible.