HC Deb 29 July 1975 vol 896 cc1473-4
1. Mr. Adley

asked the Secretary of State for Employment what steps he proposes in respect of employers faced with the alternative either of breaching the Government's incomes policy or breaking employment protection legislation.

The Secretary of State for Employment (Mr. Michael Foot)

The Government will not allow this situation to arise.

Mr. Adley

One hopes that the Secretary of State is successful in ensuring that it does not arise. Will he give a categorical assurance today that if it does he will immediately introduce amending legislation should any court rule that there is indeed a breach such as could occur under Clause 89 or Schedule 11 of the Employment Protection Bill?

Mr. Foot

It would not be right for me to answer all those hypothetical questions at the present time. The best course is to go on what I said, with the assistance of the hon. Gentleman's good wishes.

Mr. Hayhoe

How will the Secretary of State stop it arising?

Mr. Foot

These matters may arise when we are discussing other legislation that is before the House. That is the proper time to discuss these possibilities.

Mr. Powell

Does this imply that an even larger discretionary area will be left to the Secretary of State in the reserve Bill than there is in the present Bill?

Mr. Foot

Not at all. It makes no implication about the reserve Bill, because it is highly probable that the reserve Bill will never be presented to the House and advantageous that it should not.

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