HC Deb 23 February 1956 vol 549 cc543-4
7. Sir F. Medlicott

asked the Minister of Labour if he will introduce legislation which will have the effect of providing for workers who have a conscientious objection to striking, equivalent protection to that which is contained in Section 17 of the National Service Act, 1948, for those who have a conscientious objection to fighting.

Mr. Iain Macleod

No, Sir. The two situations are not analogous.

Sir F. Medlicott

Is my right hon. Friend not aware that not all of those who have to take part in strikes are necessarily in favour of them, and that we on this side have a special responsibility towards the workers in this respect, because if it is ever a question of speaking up for the rights of individual workers against the power of the unions, the party opposite seems to become deaf, dumb and paralysed?

Mr. Macleod

I am sure my hon. Friend will realise that he is asking me for a legal remedy in a situation where no legal compulsion exists.