§ 17. Mr. HORE-BELISHA
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he is aware that the National Union of Government Ship Joiners, Furnishers, and Allied Trades has the great majority of the membership of those engaged in this particular craft, and yet is not represented on the Whitley Council, whereas the Amalgamated Society of Woodworkers, which only has seven members in Devonport dockyard, seven in Portsmouth dockyard, and none in Chatham dockyard, is represented in all three ports on the Whitley Council: and whether he can see his way to give the National Union of Government Ship Joiners, Furnishers, and Allied Trades representation on the body that decides matters affecting the workers concerned?
With reference to the first part of the question, details of the membership of these organisations are not within the knowledge of the Ad- 467 miralty. The constitution of the Whitley Council provides for representation thereon of Trades Unions recognised by the Trades Unions Congress, and no other Unions. The National Union of Government Ship Joiners, Furnishers and Allied Trades is not a Union recognised in this way.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that this union represents practically all the men engaged in this particular craft, and that they are not entitled to representation because the Trade Union Congress will not recognise them? Is not the whole purpose of the Whitley Council to give representation to the men in accordance with their own desires?
That is so. This particular union is only one of many small unions which were not included in the constitution of the original Whitley Council, and in view of the fact that the adoption of the hon. Member's proposal may tend to disturb the present successful working of the Council, I am not prepared to consider it.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that this is not a small union, but contains practically everybody engaged in the trade, and that an injustice is done to them by causing them to be represented by those who do not belong to the trade at all?
§ Mr. MCKINLAY
Is it not a fact that this organisation is composed of men who left and blacklegged the Amalgamated Society?