HC Deb 08 February 1951 vol 483 cc1911-2
11. Mr. Marlowe

asked the Minister of Labour what machinery exists in his Department for considering probable future trends in employment; and how far he takes any steps to keep himself informed of threats of unusual unemployment in particular industries such as may be expected from coal difficulties.

Mr. Bevan

A specific responsibility rests on regional and local offices of my Department to obtain and to report regularly information on trends in employment which is obtained from local statistics and close contacts with industry. Nationally my Department is in constant consultation with other Departments in regard to all matters which may affect employment trends, including such short-term problems as the shortage of coal.

Mr. Marlowe

Would the information of the right hon. Gentleman under these arrangements, keep him informed of the extent to which there may be redundancy among railway men, owing to the large number of cuts which have been announced in train services? If I put down a specific Question to the right hon. Gentleman with regard to the number, would he be able to answer it?

Mr. Bevan

If the hon. and learned Member will put a Question on the Order Paper I will do my utmost to answer it, but we hope that the cutting down of the train services will be only temporary.

Mr. Harrison

Is my right hon. Friend aware that redundancy in British transport, particularly on the railways, has been avoided by the utilisation on coal services of men made redundant on passenger services?