September 11th, 1918

Minutes of E.C. Meeting held on Wednesday, September 11th at 3.00 pm

Members present:-Miss Emily Cox (chair), Miss Ashton, Miss Ashcroft, Mrs. Ashwell Cooke, Mrs. Withington, Mr. Dale, Mr. Herford.

It was reported that the August meeting of the Executive had not been held as only two members had attended.

The minutes of the July meeting were read and adopted.

Arising out of the minutes it was reported that Miss Cannon had consented to sit on the Food Control Committee as the Council’s representative.

It was reported that the women working at Kay’s, Bolton, had now been completely reorganised for the Packing Case Makers Union.

It was reported that the resolution affecting the Council had not been reached at the August meeting of the Trades and Labour Council, because of the discussion on the position of the A.U.C.E. It was decided to approach the Trades and Labour Council asking them to receive a deputation to impress upon them the urgency of the resolution being discussed without delay.

The financial report was presented by the Treasurer, and a full discussion took place on the serious financial position of the Council. In view of this, Miss Wallwork’s generous offer to take temporary work for three months to relieve the situation was accepted. It was agreed that Miss Quaile’s salary be raised to £130 from September 1st. The difficulty of continuing the work while the proposal for amalgamation was before the Trades and Labour Council was considered and the financial position was so serious that it was agreed that notice should be given to the office for Christmas. It was further decided not to continue the work beyond the close of the year except in so far as the necessary time was required for winding up.

It was reported that an interview had been held between a representative of the National Federation of Women Workers and the WTUC to discuss the difficulties that had arisen in the agreement to organise women in the engineering trade for the Federation. Miss MacArthur said that she had come to the conclusion that it would be better for the Council and the Federation to work apart. The position was discussed, and it was decided to place the whole matter before the next meeting of our Executive, and to write to the Federation after this meeting. Miss Ashton moved, Mrs. Findlay seconded and it was agreed that it was impossible to continue the agreement, and it was decided to hold a special EC meeting to consider the letter to be sent to the Federation.

Miss Cox reported that the Manchester Aircraft Committee had written to the Trades and Labour Council asking them to receive a deputation to lay before them the trouble that had arisen with regard to the organisation of women at Heywood’s, Weaste. Mrs. Pearson had informed this Committee that the Council had persuaded the girls at this firm to leave the Federation and become members of the Wood Workers’ Union. The Trades Council had replied stating that they had nothing to do with the work of the WTUC and that they could not see that any purpose would be served in receiving the deputation. The Aircraft Committee still pressed for an interview and the Trades Council had agreed to receive the deputation, but not to allow them to make any statement unless the WTUC was also represented at the meeting. Miss Cox had written a personal letter to Miss MacArthur asking her to try and stop the interview taking place, but had not received any reply to this letter.

Miss Hall of the Asylum Workers Union gave an interesting report of the recent strike.

The Sub-Committee minutes were read. These showed that an increase of 5/-a week had been granted to women munition workers, to date from the first pay day after September 1st.

The women at Kay’s, Bolton had been completely reorganised for the Packing Case Makers Union.

The girls at Wheeldon’s, Salford had now been given the standard rate of wages as a result of the interviews with the Employers’ Federation.

Dinner hour meetings had been held at Crossley Brothers, Levenshulme and many new members had joined.

The girls at Crossley Motors had now been put on piece work.

Two leather firms at Sheffield had received increases varying from 2/-to 3/-per week and the girls at Dewsnaps had decided to send in a demand for a 5/-a week increase all round.

Emily Cox

October 9th 1918