HC Deb 28 May 1968 vol 765 cc1528-9
35. Mr. Milne

asked the Minister of Power what progress has been made in the negotiations to determine the arrangements to be made for payment under the redundancy clauses of the Coal Industry Act 1967; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Gunter

The Redundant Mine-workers (Payments Scheme) Order, 1968, was laid before Parliament in draft on 21st May and will come into force 14 days after it has been approved by Resolution of each House.

Mr. Milne

Is my right hon. Friend aware that this will give general satisfaction throughout the mining areas of Britain and that if the matter can be speeded up to an even greater extent it will expedite greatly the solving of the difficulties which are being faced arising from the contraction of the mining industry?

Mr. Shinwell

Now that the Order has been presented, will my right hon. Friend expedite the affirmative Resolution procedure, because it is now more than six months since the decision was reached? Can he give a date for the affirmative Resolution?

Mr. Gunter

I could not actually give a date to my right hon. Friend, but I am as anxious as he is about it and I am hoping that it will take place shortly after the Whitsun Recess—as quickly as possible. On the question of delay, there is always a desire to blame Ministers and Government Departments, but this has been a very complex matter in which the miners' union has a very real interest. Consultations continued up to a very short time ago.