HC Deb 05 May 1971 vol 816 c1362
21. Mr. Sproat

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland how many persons were on strike in Scotland at the latest available date; and how this compares with the corresponding period over the last five years.

Mr. Gordon Campbell

This is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Employment, who is sending my hon. Friend the information for which he has asked.

Mr. Sproat

Is it not a fact that the figures reproduced in the Press show that fewer people are on strike in Scotland, that the Government can take credit for this happy situation, particularly because of their firm stand on the Industrial Relations Bill, their handling of public sector wage claims, and their different attitude to abuses of strike benefits?

Mr. Campbell

I understand that the figures which my hon. Friend will be getting go up to the end of 1970 and that they will not bring the position right up to date. However, I agree with his remarks about the aim of the Government, and we are having success in meeting inflation.

Mr. Strang

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that if the Government had spent as much time trying to create new jobs in Scotland as they have spent in trying to weaken the trade unions, the Conservatives would not have suffered such massive defeats in the elections yesterday?

Mr. Campbell

I do not accept any of that.