HC Deb 22 July 1936 vol 315 cc454-5W
Viscountess ASTOR

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in view of the fact that the majority of women civil servants have recently indicated to the Treasury that they prefer the advantages of the Superannuation Act of 1887 to those conferred under the 1909 Act, he will take steps to ensure that future women civil servants may be covered by the Act which, in the opinion of the majority of women in the service, confers the greatest benefits on women on retirement?


I am not aware that any representations have recently been made to the Treasury by women civil servants in the sense indicated in this question, and I assume that the Noble Lady refers to the extent to which advantage has been taken of the option given to established women civil servants by Section 1 of the Superannuation Act, 1935. The application to women civil servants by this section of the modifications of the previous superannuation system which had been effected for men civil servants by Sections 1 to 4 of the Superannuation Act, 1909, carried out an agreement with the staff side of the Civil Service National Whitley Council, which represents a considerable majority of the organised women civil servants. As was the case with the men, the change is obligatory as regards women entering the established service after the passing of the Act and optional for women already in that service. The proportion of the latter, namely, about two-fifths, who exercised their individual options to adopt these provisions, does not in my view justify reversing the legislation of 1935.