HC Deb 06 March 1946 vol 420 cc99-100W
Mr. Burden

asked the Minister of Health (1) why he refused to allow local authorities to adjust the low salaries of registrars, which have remained unaltered since 1929;

(2) if he is aware that a ruling has recently been given by the Registrar-General that registrars are neither servants of the Crown, nor of local authorities; and, in view of this decision, what authority is responsible for conditions of service, etc., of registrars.

Mr. Bevan

I am aware that the Registrar-General has had legal advice to the effect that registrars are not employed by the Crown or by local authorities under a contract of service. Their conditions of service are laid down by the Registration Acts, 1836 to 1929, and by schemes made by the councils of counties and county boroughs with the Minister's approval under Section 24 of the Local Government Act, 1929. The rate of salary is fixed by the scheme and can be altered only by an amending scheme. It is considered reasonable in the circumstances that their salaries should be in line generally with those obtaining in the local government service, the review of which through the machinery of the National Joint Council has now reached a fairly advanced stage. When the details have been worked out in this latter field I shall welcome representations from central associations representing the local authorities and the registrars respectively on the question of the appropriateness or otherwise in postwar conditions of the range of basic salaries adopted for registrars in 1929.