HC Deb 16 July 1953 vol 517 cc2233-4
22. Mr. Lewis

asked the Minister of Labour if his attention has been drawn to the difficulties which the National Dock Labour Board are experiencing in their endeavours to ascertain trade prospects on which to base a labour programme to facilitate the rapid and economic turnround for vessels, while at the same time providing a reasonable measure of security for the men in the industry; and whether he will make a statement of the Government's intention with regard to this matter.

Sir W. Monckton

Yes, Sir. My Department has already given the National Dock Labour Board some assistance in this matter and I propose, in consultation with my colleagues concerned, to continue to give them all the help I can.

Mr. Lewis

Has the attention of the Minister been drawn to the annual report of the Dock Labour Board, in which they go out of their way to emphasise this particular difficulty. Will he consider having discussions with the Board, together with his officials, because the Board are really worried about this matter?

Sir W. Monckton

The hon. Member asks if I will have discussions with the Board. I assure him that we have been doing that for some time past, and we have been able to help them by putting them in touch with the Coal Board in the matter of pitprops, in order to anticipate, so far as possible, what will come to the various docks. I have also arranged a meeting with the various Ministers on the question of softwood.