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Factory Inspectors (Qualifications)

Volume 527: debated on Thursday 13 May 1954

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asked the Minister of Labour how many of the factory inspectors in the entry grade have science qualifications; and how many are arts graduates.

Of the 83 factory inspectors in the entry grade, seven have science qualifications and 61 are arts graduates. Two inspectors have engineering qualifications and 13 have considerable works experience.

Does the right hon. and learned Gentleman remember that there was a different picture in this connection before the war, when most of the people in the entry grade had technical and scientific qualifications? It he aware that the change may be due, in part at least, to the fact that such graduates are now taken over by other Ministries which are able to offer higher financial incentives? Will the Minister do something about this?

The answer to the last part—which is perhaps the most important part of the hon. Member's question—is that a claim for an increase in the salaries of the chief inspector, deputy chief inspectors and superintending inspectors is at present under consideration.

Is the Minister aware that we are all very happy to hear that, not because we have any interest in any particular person but because if the grades are lifted in this way for the chiefs it means that the whole status of the service is raised as well?