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Factories Report (Publication)

Volume 530: debated on Thursday 15 July 1954

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asked the Minister of Labour why the Annual Report of the Chief Inspector of Factories for 1952 was not published until June, 1954; and when he will resume the pre-war practice of publishing these Reports soon after the year to which they refer.

This has been a long-standing difficulty and both the Chief Inspector of Factories and I share the hon. Member's concern. The preparation of the Annual Report has recently been examined and proposals are now under consideration which, I hope, will be of assistance for the future.

I am obliged to the Minister for his answer, but as great interest is shown in this matter by those engaged in industry will he take steps not only to speed up the publication of the Report but also to ensure its wide and prompt distribution?

I have taken action which, I hope, will bring about that result. I am not satisfied to leave the position where it is.

Is the right hon. and learned Gentleman aware that there is a growing feeling throughout large sections of the trade union movement that the Factories Inspectorate is tending to run down in effectiveness, perhaps because of overloading, and would not the early publication of the Report enable people to see how far that is so and what to do about it?

I think that that is another reason why early publication is desirable, and I will insist on it.