HC Deb 07 June 1956 vol 553 cc1264-5
31. Mr. Lewis

asked the Minister of Labour what approaches he has had made to him concerning recent redundancies among employees at the Birmingham Small Arms Works; and what action he has taken or proposes to take to provide employment for those affected.

Mr. Iain Macleod

I am informed that notices were issued to 300 workers at the end of last week, but, apart from those who are leaving at their own request or who are due to retire, they are being offered alternative work in one or other of the factories in the Birmingham Small Arms organisation. The services of the employment exchanges will remain available to assist any who, for one reason or another, find this offer unacceptable.

Mr. Lewis

May I first ask whether the Minister will check his figure, because I think that it is now 301? Is he aware that that one claims that he has been victimised? If there has, in fact, been victimisation, cannot the Minister inter. vene and perhaps refer the case to the individual's union so that that union can take up the matter for him? Will the right hon. Gentleman ascertain whether or not Sir Bernard Docker has been sacked because he has been touring round the world for six months of the year on his yacht, or whether there is not some other reason for this incident?

Mr. Macleod

I am bound to say that the hon. Member started his supplementary question so long ago that I have forgotten what it was, but if it was his usual supplementary question, I dare say that "No, Sir" will meet it.

Sir J. Hutchison

In this complicated matter, would my right hon. Friend consult the dockers' union?