§ 2. Mr. Craven-Ellis
asked the Minister of Labour whether he will amend Statutory Rules and Orders, 1940, No. 1305, and particularly Article 5 of paragraph 3, 928 issued under the authority of Conditions of Employment and National Arbitration Order, 1940, so that those workers who are not members of a recognised trade union may receive the full benefits of the Order?
§ 8. Major-General Sir Alfred Knox
asked the Minister of Labour whether as Statutory Rules and Orders, No. 1305, Conditions of Employment and National Arbitration, Article 5, paragraph (3), safeguards the interests of trade unionists, and as there is no similar safeguard by appeal to the Minister for employés who are not trade unionists, he will take steps to remedy this injustice?
§ Mr. Bevin
The right under Article 5 (3) to raise questions with regard to the interpretation of such terms and conditions agreed between organisations of employers and trade unions was deliberately confined to such bodies. There is, in my opinion, no reason why it should be given to individuals. An employer or worker who does not already belong to the appropriate industrial organisation can best protect his interests by joining it; he will at the same time be contributing his part towards that joint co-operation in industry on which our war effort must largely depend.
§ Sir A. Knox
Will the right hon. Gentleman tell me what an employé has to do who is in an occupation which is not covered by any trade union?
§ Mr. Craven-Ellis
In view of the fact that by far the greater percentage of workers are not members of trade unions, why are they to be excluded from benefit under this Order?
§ Mr. Bevin
It depends on what my hon. Friend means by "benefit." The benefit under an agreement is the wages which the agreement provides. I am 929 not aware that there is any particular benefit for an individual to have the right to interpret an agreement to which he was never a party and in the making of which he took no part. How can he interpret an agreement in the making of which he took no hand?