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The Administration of Labor Matters in Palestine before 1948 (Nakba), British Mandate: A Survey of Palestine: Volume II - Page 746. Chapter XVII: Labour And Wages: Section 3
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Posted on October 28, 2007
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British Mandate: A Survey of Palestine
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Section 3.


27. Until 1942 the policy of Government bad been to confine its interest in conditions of labour as far as possible within the limits enforced by international obligations and the interests of public health and order. The District Administration and the Departments of Health, Public Works, Police, Immigration, Railways and Posts, Telegraphs and Telephones administered independently their respective labour concerns, while in regard to legislation Government was guided by the advice of a labour legislation committee appointed in 1931 "to consider the operation of existing labour legislation and make recommendations for its amendment if necessary". No arrangements existed for the regulation by Government of industrial relations.

28. In 1942 a Department of Labour was set up. Among the members of its staff were four United Kingdom factory inspectors, seconded for service with the Palestine Government, and a former trade union official selected by the Secretary of State. The mission of the Department, as defined generally in section 3 of the Department of Labour Ordinance*, is to safeguard and promote the general welfare of workers and maintain good relations between workers and employers. Special duties prescribed in sections 5 and 6 of the Ordinance are :-

(a) regularly to supervise and review the conditions of employment existing in Palestine;

(b) to ensure the due enforcement of any Ordinance relating to the welfare of workers or the terms and conditions of their employment or relating to Trade Unions, Labour Exchanges and Industrial Relations ;

(c) to contribute towards the settlement of trade disputes arising between employers and workers or workers and 4workers;

(d) to collaborate with employers and workers in the task of preventing accidents by the introduction of safety devices and systems and the spread of education relating to matters of hygiene and safety; and

(e) the preparation and publication of statistics and reports relating to a number of subjects including unemployment, wage rates, the employment of women, young persons and children, hours of work, trade unions, social insurance, apprenticeship and trade disputes.
* Laws 0£ 1943, Vol. I, page 2.