HC Deb 12 November 1970 vol 806 cc585-6
10. Mr. Eadie

asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he is satisfied with the assistance his Department provides to workpeople who have been made redundant without adequate notice by employers; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Dudley Smith

My Department operates special arrangements for giving advice and information to workpeople faced with redundancy. These are varied to suit the requirements of each case. I think they are sufficiently flexible to meet the needs in most of the cases where little advance notice is received.

Mr. Eadie

The hon. Gentleman must be aware that I have corresponded with his Department about such an issue and that there was inability on the part of his Department to give any real assistance in the matter. Is the hon. Gentleman satisfied that the working of his Department, in relation to the issue which we are discussing, is sufficient to deal with and help workpeople who are in difficulty with employers who are trying to thwart what, after all, is the will of Parliament?

Mr. Smith

Yes. I am satisfied that the Department always uses its best endeavours to help in these cases. Most employers give reasonable advance notice of redundancy and this often materially assists those who are affected.

I am sorry that the hon. Gentleman feels that his correspondence has not been properly treated. If he is prepared to see me personally, or if I could make some arrangement with him, perhaps we can go into it.

Mr. Ashton

Will the hon. Gentleman make an investigation into what is happening at Vauxhall's today, where 325 members of my union—the Draughtsmen's and Allied Technicians Association—are having to resort to sit-ins, bog-ins, days of thought, and other forms of protest simply because the management refuses to negotiate in a proper manner on the redundancy notices which have been given to them?

Mr. Smith

I am not aware of the exact details of that case, but perhaps my right hon. Friend and I can look into it.