§ 6. Commander Bower
asked the Minister of Labour what action, either by way of legal proceedings or under the Defence Regulations, has been taken against the trade union district delegate in an important ship-repairing area, who is reported by the Select Committee on National Expenditure to have fined members of the union who work overtime without his permission, to have required exorbitantly high rates of pay when his consent is given, to have been primarily responsible for resisting the introduction of pneumatic rivetting to expedite repairs, and to have insisted on the retention of an unnecessary man in the squad?
§ Mr. Bevin
No action of the kind mentioned has been taken by my Department. I am not in possession of the evidence on which the Select Committee based these references in their Report, nor am I otherwise in a position to produce the evidence that would be necessary to support legal proceedings in a court of law.
§ Commander Bower
Seeing that these allegations have been made by an extremely important Committee of Members of this House, did not the right hon. Gentleman think it was his duty to investigate those allegations fully and to consult the Home Secretary, with a view to taking some kind of action?
§ Mr. Shinwell
Was my right hon. Friend himself informed by certain trade union delegates in a particular part of the country?
§ Mr. S. O. Davies
Is not the right hon. Gentleman satisfied that there is not an atom of truth in the charges against this particular trade union official?
§ Commander Bower
In view of the importance of the question and the complete 276 inadequacy of the Minister's Reply, I beg to give notice that I shall raise the matter on the Adjournment at the earliest possible opportunity.