Labour Investigation Committee (1946)||
We now proceed to consider certain important measures and activities undertaken by the State, employers and associations of workers for the improvement of workers' standards of life and for the promotion of their economic and social well-being. Such activities are broadly termed Welfare Work, but a precise definition of the term "welfare work" is somewhat difficult.1 After having considered the several definitions offered by writers on the subject, we feel that this question is somewhat subjective and that the definition largely depends upon the circumstances of each case. This, some would like to draw a distinction between "welfare work" and "social work", indicating that the former refers to work undertaken by the employer himself, while the latter comprises measures adopted by other agencies. As Mr. Arthur James Todd aptly remarks, "A series of sharply diverse opinions exists on the motives and merits of industrial welfare work".2 For our part, we prefer to include under welfare activities anything done for the intellectual, physical, moral and economic betterment of the workers, whether by employers, by Government or by other agencies, over and above what is laid down by law or what is normally expected as part of the contractual benefits for which the workers may have bargained. Thus, under this definition, we may include housing, medical and educational facilities, nutrition , (including provision of canteens), facilities for rest and recreation, co-operative societies, day nurseries and creches, provision of sanitary accommodation, holidays with pay, social insurance measures undertaken voluntarily by employers alone or jointly with workers, including sickness and maternity benefit schemes, Provident Funds, Gratuities and Pensions, etc. Some of these matters are already covered in other Chapters. In this chapter we propose to take a bird's eye view of activities not already discussed elsewhere.