HC Deb 23 January 1984 vol 52 c627
25. Mr. Canavan

asked the hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission, what new initiatives the Commission propose to improve the state of industrial relations for employees for whom the Commission is responsible.

Mr. Beith

A number of issues remain under discussion between management and staff side, and the Commission is hopeful that they will be resolved in due course.

Mr. Canavan

Would it not help to improve industrial relations if existing staff were given first consideration when vacancies arise? Is the hon. Gentleman aware that there have been occasions when vacancies have been advertised externally, external applicants have been interviewed at considerable expense, and the post was eventually given to an internal applicant, anyway? Is not that a deplorable waste of time and money?

Mr. Beith

The Commission is concerned that members of staff should have the full opportunity to compete for internal appointments, and has gone to considerable lengths to satisfy itself that the staff of the House are given a full and free opportunity to compete for senior posts. However, the Commission would be criticised if it did not, in appropriate circumstances, ensure that open competition took place.

Mr. Greenway

For how many posts does the Commission have responsibility in terms of appointments and services?

Mr. Beith

I should require notice of that question.

Mr. Speaker

We go back to question No. 14.

Mr. Ray Powell

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. Should we not continue supplementary questions on question No. 13 because no supplementary questions were called on a very important matter, the unemployment of 16 to 18-year-olds?

Mr. Speaker

Order. That is the luck of the draw, but we are back on Welsh questions now.

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