HC Deb 18 August 1919 vol 119 cc2007-8

The Government propose to prepare a scheme on the above lines, and will submit it to Parliament with the least possible delay. Those are general recommendations which we are prepared to submit to Parliament—that the minerals are to be purchased by the State; that a fund should be raised for the purpose of promoting schemes for the social improvement and the amelioration of the conditions and the amenities of life in the mining villages; that the State should not purchase the business of the mines and certainly not run them; that unification should be promoted by amalgamation in denned areas; that schemes should be promoted for the amalgamation of industries in mining areas, to reduce the cost of management, for the prevention of waste, and the in crease of efficiency; that the Government should have power to overlook these schemes in the interest of the consumer.

The workers will have two methods of making their influence directly felt. First of all, there is the scheme for giving them representation on committees which will have a voice in settling the conditions under which the work is done—not the management; you could not run a pit by a committee—but the conditions under which the work is done; and in the second place, they would have direct representation by the nomination of a certain number of directors in the area group that will be directing the control of the mines in those various areas. Those are the pro- posals which we make in reference to the mines, and which we will submit to the House.