6 SEPTEMBER 1913, Page 3

The most important event of the week in connexion with

the London strikes is the refusal of Lord Beauchamp, on behalf of the Office of Works, to agree to the demands of the London Building Industries' Federation in regard to non-unionist labour. This is as it should be, for the con- cession demanded would have involved the monstrous injustice of a State prohibition of free labour. For the rest the situation remains unchanged. The painters have held a ballot and rejected by a majority of twenty to one the offer of the Master Decorators of an increase of a penny an hour and the reference of other matters in dispute to arbitration. The painters demanded an increase of lid. an hour and recogni- tion of their union and code of working rules. At the same time the Master Builders have declared that they will not agree to the demands of the painters or even go so far in the way of compromise as the Master Decorators.