HC Deb 06 April 1944 vol 398 cc2144-5
4. Wing-Commander Grant-Ferris

asked the Minister of Labour what steps he proposes to take to end the strike of miners in Yorkshire and prevent a repetition of similar unofficial strikes; and whether he is satisfied that the powers the Government possesses are sufficient to deal adequately with those who instigate and encourage such stoppages of work.

Mr. McCorquodale

It has been the policy of the Government to rely upon the joint voluntary machinery and negotiation for the settlement of disputes and upon the authority of trade unions and employers' organisations to see that agreements reached are loyally observed. The Government are considering whether further powers are necessary to ensure that the authority of these organisations is not undermined and what further steps can be taken to prevent unofficial strikes.

Mr. Shinwell

I am sorry that the Minister is not here, but I have no doubt he is quite properly engaged elsewhere. In his absence may I ask the Parliamentary Secretary, in regard to those great decisions which are to be taken in the course of the next few days, and to which his right hon. Friend referred in a speech the other day, are we to understand that these may be taken during the Recess; or is it intended that they shall not be made effective until the House has had an opportunity of considering them.

Mr. McCorquodale

I would ask the House not to press me any further on the statement I have just made. I am afraid I have nothing to add to it.

Mr. Gallacher

Would the Minister not consider remedying the miners' grievances as a means of stopping the strike.

Mr. Sutcliffe

Can the Parliamentary Secretary say what proportion of those on strike are not members of the union.