HC Deb 13 December 1945 vol 417 cc619-20
67. Dr. Stross

asked the Minister of Labour whether he intends that works committees should be established in every factory employing more than 10 workers; and whether, in view of the excellent results achieved by existing works' committees, he will consider making their establishment obligatory.

Mr. Isaacs

No, Sir. The establishment of works' committees and similar bodies is a matter for voluntary arrangement between the employers and workers concerned, on whose mutual desire and good will they finally rest. It is my policy to encourage the establishment of such machinery, but compulsion would be likely to defeat its own object.

Dr. Stross

Is my right hon. Friend aware that in every case where they have been established production has improved, and conditions for the workers have likewise improved, and, in view of that fact, would he not reconsider his answer?

Mr. Isaacs

No, Sir. If we were to step in and attempt to compel the establishment of these committees, we might get a result exactly the reverse of what we desire.

Captain Blackburn

Is not the association of the workers with the processes of production an indispensable feature of Socialism, and.would not my right hon. Friend, therefore, give urgent consideration to the encouragement of joint production committees throughout industry?

Mr. Isaacs

I think that all possible advice and assistance are given by the Ministry to the workers' organisations, who are themselves very keen to see the project carried out.