HC Deb 13 April 1937 vol 322 cc815-6W
Mr. Gallacher

asked the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs whether he can supply information as to the old age pension scale introduced by the Government of New Zealand, and as to new legislation introduced by that Government with regard to the minimum wage, hours of labour, and holidays with pay?

Mr. M. MacDonald

I am informed that the position is as follows:

As regards old age pensions, in accordance with the terms of the Pensions Amendment Act, 1936, the amount of the old age pension in New Zealand was restored to £52 a year as from the 1st April, 1936, and provision was made for a further increase to £58 10s. a year from the 1st December, 1936.

The Industrial Conciliation and Arbitration Amendment Act, the Factories Amendment Act, the Shops and Offices Amendment Act and Agricultural Workers Act, passed by the New Zealand Parliament during the 1936 Session, all deal with matters of minimum wage, hours of labour and holidays. In these Acts provision is made for a 44-hour week in the case of shops and a 4o-hour week in the case of factories. In the case of other occupations governed by Arbitration Court awards, a 40-hour week is also provided for, except in cases where the Arbitration Court is satisfied that the circumstances of any particular industry render it impracticable to carry on that industry efficiently if the hours are so limited. In such cases the maximum working week must not, however, exceed 44 hours. The Industrial Conciliation and Arbitration Amendment Act also requires the Arbitration Court, in making awards, to provide for a five-day working week wherever practicable.

Statutory provision for an annual holiday period with pay is made by the Agricultural Workers Act in the case of workers on dairy-farms, and provision is also made in the Factories Amendment Act and Shops and Offices Amendment Act for full wages to be paid in respect of certain statutory whole holidays specified in those Acts. The question whether any additional annual holiday period with pay is to be granted is a matter determined by the award made by the Arbitration Court in respect of any particular industry.

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