HC Deb 15 October 1969 vol 788 cc384-5
15. Mr. Judd

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether he will make a statement on the pay and productivity deal for naval dockyard workers.

Mr. John Morris

Negotiations on a productivity deal in the Royal Dockyards are about to be resumed following the recent announcement of new basic pay rates which have been agreed with the trades unions.

Mr. Judd

I thank my hon. Friend for news of the improved basic pay, but can he assure us that the dockyard workers will never again be allowed to fall so badly behind comparable earnings in outside industry, and also that the productivity discussions will not be taken as an excuse to whittle away the improvement in basic pay?

Mr. Morris

I recognise the part which my hon. Friend has played and his sustained interest in these matters, and I pay tribute to him for that. The award itself, an interim award, is a very satisfactory one, and I hope that it will restore the good will which is so necessary in the dockyards. I hope also that the productivity negotiations will now be pressed ahead and brought to a conclusion.