§ Mr. Shinwell
asked the Minister of Labour, why he has raised the age of reservation for certain skilled workers in the printing trades, in view of the fact that the printing trades represent the most readily available source of skilled manpower for quick training in precision machine-setting and tool-room operations, and that the lack of skilled setters and tool-room operatives is the most serious obstacle in the way of expansion of armaments output?
§ Mr. E. Bevin
The decision to raise the age of reservation from 30 to 35 for certain skilled occupations in the printing trades was made after a review of all relevant circumstances, including the state of employment in the industry. I am aware that many workers in these trades may be suitable for training for munition work, and a considerable number have already entered upon such work. Those who are affected by the raising of the age have the opportunity of seeking employment or training in munition work before the new age of reservation becomes operative on 1st December.