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The main law now in force is contained in the Act of Parliament 41 Vic., c. 16, “The Factory and Workshop Act, 1878.” Copies can be obtained from Eyre and Spottiswoode, and elsewhere, price 26. An edition with notes, by Mr. A. Redgrave, C. B. is published by Shaw and Sons, price 5/-. Sufficient abstract of its provisions can be obtained at the same publishers in sheet form, price 6d. (textile and non-textile industries being distinct and 3d. each).
The law relating to labour in coal mines will be found in the Act 50 and 51 Vic.,
"The Coal Mines Regulation Act," 1887; and that relating to other mines in the Act 35 and 36 Vic., c. 77, The Metalliferous Mines Regulation Act," 1872. “ The Agricultural Gangs Act," 1867; “ The Canal Boats Act,” 1884 ; and "The Merchant Shipping Acts,” also minutely regulate the employment of labour. The labour of persons under eighteen in shops is regulated by the Act 49 and 50 Vic., c. 55, “The Shop Hours Regulation Act, 1886.” The other Acts in force, such as 46 and 47 Vic., c. 53 (Factories); 38 and 39 Vic., c. 39 ; 44 and 45 Vic., c. 26; and 45 and 46 Vic., c. 3 (Mines) effect only minor alterations.
The chief Parliamentary Reports are the Select Committee's Report of 1816, and those of the Royal Commissions of 1834, 1840-3, 1862-6, and 1876. All but the last two are summarized in Engels' “ Condition of the Working Class in England” (Reeves) and Karl Marx's 66
Capital" (Sonnenschein). More recent information will be found in the Report of the House of Lords Committee on the Sweating System (H.L. 62, 1890).
The laws of foreign States are given (imperfectly) in Foreign Office Report, “ Com mercial No. 25,” C-5866, price 5d. Other particulars are given in the Report of the Berlin Labour Conference (May, 1890). The first Annual Report of the Federal Commissionerof Labour (Washington, 1886) gives a valuable summary of American labour laws.
The History of English factory legislation is best found in E. E. von Plener's English Factory Legislation". (Chapman and Hall, 1873), Alfred's "History of the Factory Movement” is a practically contemporary chronicle of the movement down to 1847. Lord Shaftesbury's work is described in his “Life and Work,” by E. Hodder (Cassell, 1886), and “Speeches” (Chapman and Hall, 1868). Besides Lord Shaftesbury's speeches, those of Sir Robert Peel (Routledge, 1853), John Bright (Macmillan), Fawcett (Macmillan, 1873), and Lord Macaulay (Longmans, 1854) are historically interesting, and the great speech of the latter on the Ten Hours Bill rebuts the arguments against regulation of adult labour with great oratorical force. Colonial precedents are described in Sir C. W. Dilke's “ Problems of Greater Britain ” (Macmillan 1890).
The arguments in favour of factory legislation are well given in W. S. Jevons' " The State in Relation to Labour,” ch. iii. (Macmillan, 1882); John Morley's “Life of Cobden," vol., ch. xviii., pp. 298, 303 ; H. Ll. Smith's “ Economic Aspects of State Socialism,” ch. iv., sec. ii. (Simpkin, 1887); J. S. Mill's “Principles of Political Economy,” bk. V., ch. xi., 9 and 12, and essay “ On Liberty," ch. v.; Duke of Argyle's “ Reign of Law,"ch. vii. (Strahan, 1867); and especially in Gunton's “ Wealth and Progress" (Macmillan, 1888).
The latter work gives the best summary of the case for an Eight Hours Bill, but Tom Mann's pamphlet, “ The Eight Hours Movement” (Modern Press, 13, Paternoster Row, 1889, price 1d.) presents it in a form more popularly accessible. See also “ The Eight Hours Work Day' by A. K. Donald (Labour Press, 57, Chancery Lane, E.C., 10.). The difficulties of a universal compulsory eight hours day are stated by Mr. Bradlaugh, M.P., in his article republished from the New Review, “The Eight Hours Movement” (Freethought Publishing Company, 63, Fleet Street, 1889, price 2d.). The best discussion of the subject is, however, to be found in recent magazine articles, not reprinted, such as the following :
George Gunton, “The Eight Hours Law: shall it be adopted ?" (Forum, 1886, p. 136).
[Since the preceding, the most important contributions to the discussion are the Report of the Trades Union Congress " at Liverpool, in September, 1890 (Co-operative Printing Society, Manchester), and John Burns' *Speech on the Liverpool Congress (Green, McAllan, & Co., 3, Ludgate Circus, E.C., 18.5.- December, 1890.]
Higures for Londoners.
1.-LONDON'S POVERTY. LONDON now contains over 4,300,000 persons. Three hundred thousand (300,000) of these earn less than 188. per week per family, and live in a state of chronic want.
One in every eight of those now living will die in the workhouse or workhouse infirmary: one in every sixteen is a pauper this year.
Over forty-three thousand (43,000) children in the Board Schools alone go to school without sufficient food.
Over thirty thousand persons have no home but the fourpenny “doss-house” or the casual ward.
2.-LONDON'S RENTAL. The annual rental of London is at least £40,000,000, The tenant pays, in addition, over £7,500,000 in Rates. besides the National Taxes.
Of the rental, about £16,000,000 is paid each year for mere permission to occupy London's 119 square miles of hill and swamp, without any payment for the use of the buildings on them. How much was this land worth before London grew there?
3.-LONDON'S UNEARNED INCREMENT. The saleable value of the ground on which London stands increases year by year. During the last twenty years, it has, on an average, grown every year by about £4,000,000, after deducting the value of any new buildings or alterations. This is the annual “New Year's Gift," in addition to the annual rental, which we make to those persons who do us the favor to "own" London
4.-LONDON'S WATER TAX. It costs under £700,000 a year to supply London with water; but London has to pay more than £1,700,000
a year for the water so supplied. The surplus serves to pay, on an average, over seven per cent. on the nominal capital of the eight water companies (some shareholders. receive over twelve per cent.).
As the rental value of London rises our water tax goes up, but there is a steady decrease in the average amount of water supplied. The County Council could give us an improved supply at the cost of less than half our present tribute.
5.-LONDON'S GAS BILL. London's annual gas supply costs less than £3,900,000, but in order to earn twelve or thirteen per cent. for the Shareholders of the three gas companies, London is charged over £4,700,000 for it. One hundred and seventy different towns in England already own their own gas works, and save the cost of shareholders.
6.-LONDON'S TRAMWAYS. Londoners pay in tram fares £1,000,000 a year, but it only costs £780,000 to work the trams. The balance provides an average dividend of nearly 6 per cent. to the shareholders. Thirty-one towns own their own trams, and one (Huddersfield) works them without any contractor. This tramway is the only one where the “Eight. Hours Day” is yet in force. Why should not London copy Huddersfield ?
Over 7,000 Londoners die each year in London's hospitals; yet Londoners have no voice in the management of the 238 separate competing hospitals and other medical charities, owning over £4,000,000 of public property. No public superintendence controls their jobbery; no public audit checks their waste.
8.—THE CITY GUILDS. Seventy-four “ City Companies,” with about 7,500 “liverymen,” are controlling a property clearly belonging. to the people of London, worth at least fifteen millions
sterling, with an income of at least £750,000 a year. Two-thirds of this is devoted to various charitable pur.. poses, but at least a quarter of a million sterling annua ally is being wasted, jobbed and misappropriated" by the City Companies.
9.-LONDON'S POLICE. London's 15,000 police cost over £1,700,000 annually, for which Londoners have to pay a ninepenny rate. Yet Londoners are not consulted as to how the money should be spent, and have no control whatsoever over the force which they maintain. Every provincial city and county has this power, denied to London alone. Remember Trafalgar Square !
10.-LONDON'S FINANCIAL BUDGET. Over ten millions sterling are annually collected and spent by London's public authorities, and yet we pay, in addition, ten millions more every year to those who ".own our gas works, water-works, tramways and docks, for what costs them annually only six millions and a half.
...If London, like the great provincial cities, itself owned these public services (afier paying the sharebolders the full cost of the underiakings), it might saveat least £1,500,000 every year-enough to cover half the: expenditure on the relief of London's poor.
The mere annual “uuearned increment” of London. . would, if appropriated to public purposes, enable the whole of London's million poor to be decently housed, with only the delay necessary for the building operations; and the net annual income from only "fair rents” on this. public property would more than suffice to educate all London's children free of charge.
One week's income of the owners of London's ground values would provide a free dinner every day in the yearfor the 43,000 children now at school without sufficient. food.
A fuller statement of these facts, with precise references to official statistics proving them, and many others relating to London's. size, growth, poverty, taxation, administration, finance, &c., will be found in
"FACTS FOR LONDONERS"
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Fabian Tract No. 8.
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