HC Deb 10 December 1986 vol 107 cc556-98
Mr. Fatchett

I beg to move amendment No. 33, in page 1, line 16, after 'appoint', insert 'after consultation with teachers' unions and associations, and the local education authorities'.

The First Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means (Mr. Ernest Armstrong)

With this it will be convenient to take the following amendments. No. 34, in page 1, line 16, after 'appoint', insert 'on the nomination (in respect in each case of a third of the membership of the Committee) of the trades unions represented before the passage of the Act on the Burnham Primary and Secondary Committee; and of the local education authorities'. No. 213, in schedule 1, page 5, line 5 leave out 'five' and insert 'seven'.

No. 214, in page 5, line 5, leave out subsection (1) and insert— '(1) The Advisory Committee shall consist of not fewer than fifteen members, of whom seven shall be appointed on the nomination of associations representing local education authorities and seven on the nomination of registered trade unions representing school teachers.'. No. 215, in page 5, line 6, leave out 'nine' and insert 'twenty'.

No. 216, in page 5, line 6, at end insert 'and who shall include members appointed on the nomination of the relevant local education authority associations and members appointed on the nomination of the teachers' unions and associations.'.

Mr. Fatchett

We have discussed with you, Mr. Armstrong, the possibility of taking with this group amendment No. 35, in clause 2, page 1, line 16, after 'an', insert 'independent'. We are doing that so that the Committee can bring together two points about the advisory committee. We have taken on board the fact that progress has not been as quick as we had expected, and we are trying to facilitate matters. The hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East (Mr. Freud) was earlier bemoaning the fact that we were making so little progress. We are now making more rapid progress, and he is not here to see it happen, although the hon. Member for Ryedale (Mrs. Shields) is here. If the Government do not yield to the strength of our arguments, we shall seek to divide the Committee on amendment No. 33. Given the way in which the Labour vote has increased so dramatically in the last two Divisions, the Government may feel that, with the troops coming back in, it might be time to yield to our persuasive argument. We would also like to have a division on amendment No. 35.

8 am

The amendments deal with the advisory committee. My hon. Friends have already referred to the advisory committee, because it will replace the free collective bargaining for teachers. Our amendments deal with the balance of the advisory committee, consultation, nomination and other aspects of appointment. It may be useful for the Committee if I made it clear that while we seek to amend and improve the committee, it would not be the intention of any forthcoming Labour Government to have any truck with it, and when we come to repeal the legislation, the committee will go.

One of our major criticisms of the committee is that made by my right hon. Friend the Member for Halton (Mr. Oakes) on Second Reading—that it is toothless—and this is shown in a whole series of aspects.

Schedule 1 deals with the basis of appointment to the committee. Appointment will be at the pleasure of the Secretary of State. The Bill sets out various reasons for removing people from the committee—for example, if a person has become bankrupt or made an arrangement with his creditors. That seems a reasonable course. A second reason is if he is incapacitated by physical or mental illness, and, thirdly, if a person is absent for two or more consecutive meetings of the committee, except for reasons approved by the committee. That may also seem reasonable, although one or two hon. Members might find it a dangerous rule if it were applied to the House. Finally, the Secretary of State takes to himself the power to dismiss from the committee a person who is, in the opinion of the Secretary of State otherwise unable or unfit to perform his duties as member. In other words, the Secretary of State determines whether a person is unable or unfit to serve on the committee. We know from the record of the Government only one way that the powers will be used. The Government and the Secretary of State will act as they have acted over the past few years, when the Secretary of State was in another office. They will appoint to the advisory committee only those people who are prepared to go along with the Secretary of State.

Mr. Frank Cook


Mr. Fatchett

My hon. Friend says, "Noddies." That may well be an attack on an important children's toy and book, and is probably an unreasonable comment by my hon. Friend at this time of the morning. Children enjoy Noddy books and would be unhappy to see Noddy acquainted with the people we might find on the advisory committee. I hope that my hon. Friend will take an opportunity to withdraw his comment.

We will see what we have seen from the Government in other contexts. I ask my hon. Friends to think about all the appointments that the Government have made to chair district health authorities and the membership of those authorities. They appoint people who will support their policies and do not seek a balance or representation to reflect different views. They will simply search for people who will nod through the Government's policy. The Secretary of State, who is not here at the moment, has a record for doing that.

Some of us had the dubious pleasure of serving with the Secretary of State during the passage of the bill to abolish the GLC and the Metropolitan councils. We said then that the people he would appoint to chair the residuary bodies would be totally dependent on the government and would follow the Government's wishes. Anybody who lives and works in a metropolitan council area or in the GLC area will know how true those comments proved to be. The Government appointed to chair and run the residuary bodies exactly the sort of people that we expect them to appoint to the advisory committee—placemen for the Secretary of State.

In advancing interesting arguments during the earlier part of the debate, some of my hon. Friends spoke about the power of ACAS and the role of ballots in industrial disputes. I think it was my hon. Friend the Member for Stoke-on-Trent, Central (Mr. Fisher) who asked the Minister of State to have a ballot on the Secretary of State's proposals. That brings to mind again the parallel with the metropolitan counties and GLC, because during the passage of the Bill to abolish them we tabled an amendment that the Secretary of State should have a ballot about abolition. We said that if he believed abolition would be popular he should subject it to the test of popular opinion. The Secretary of State refused to accept any such amendment. When it comes to a test of popular opinion, whether of the electors in the metropolitan areas or in the GLC area or of teachers, the Secretary of State runs away.

Mr. Corbyn

Does my hon. Friend recall that during the struggle against the abolition proposals, four GLC by-elections were held because Labour members resigned so that the electors could have a voice? The Conservative party refused to contest those elections.

Mr. Fatchett

I welcome that point from my hon. Friend because it shows that the Conservative party has a certain disregard for ballots. My hon. Friend the Member for Holborn and St. Pancras (Mr. Dobson) suggests that the Conservatives may even refuse to stand at the next general election. My hon. Friend the Member for Bolsover (Mr. Skinner) said that this debate had been running for less than a day and we had already gained five points in the opinion polls. If that process continues, the Conservatives might take the action that my hon. Friend the Member for Holborn and St. Pancras suggests. If that happens, there might be a series of place men sitting on the Government Benches.

Mr. Kevin Barron (Rother Valley)

The Conservatives may already have decided to withdraw from the election without making it public. I do not think the conservatives have a candidate to stand against me at the next general election. Perhaps they are quite happy with the present representation.

The First Deputy Chairman

Order. We had better return to the amendment.

Mr. Fatchett

That is an interesting psychological observation by my hon. Friend the Member for Rother Valley (Mr. Barron), but I refuse to comment on it.

Mr. Allan Rogers

Does my hon. Friend find the Government's attitude to ballots strange? During the miners' strike there were Nuremberg-type chants from the Government Benches for a ballot. The cry was "Ballot, ballot, ballot" throughout the strike. Conservative Members were so concerned about democracy then. Is it not strange that now they are in conflict with the teachers they do not want a ballot? What is my hon. Friend's opinion of this selective democracy that is operated by the Conservative party and the Government?

Mr. Fatchett

We have expressed strong opinions about that throughout the night. My hon. Friend is right in saying that the Government have less than an even-handed approach to democracy. My hon. Friend may have entered the Chamber a little late, but I have no doubt that he will come to the same conclusion as my hon. Friends and me. The Government move quickly in whichever way they find convenient, and the question of principle rarely arises in that process.

I am delighted that the Under-Secretary of State is to reply to the debate. He has been present for about 15 hours and he has not been able to utter a word. That must be a great disappointment to him and to his many admirers on the Government and Opposition Benches. The hon. Gentleman will have the opportunity to address the Committee, and I suspect that my colleagues will want to make comments on the advisory committee. I have no doubt that the Minister will have the opportunity to reply to the debate.

The Minister will note that the amendments are an attempt to meet the point that my hon. Friend the Member for Rhondda (Mr. Rogers) has made. We are trying to introduce an element of indirect democracy. Some of the amendments allow direct nomination by the individual trade union bodies, or in some instances the local authorities. This is not the same as a ballot of all teachers. We are trying to find common ground with the Government. We know that they are frightened of total ballots, but we thought that a system of indirect democracy meant that they would be prepared to accept the sort of amendments that we are tabling. The amendments would reflect the balance that exists within the current machinery and among the teachers' unions in membership, and it would involve an element of democracy and accountability.

If our amendments were accepted, the committee would have a degree of accountability. Those who served on the committee would report back to individual local authority associations or to individual trade union associations. We do not accept the principle of the Bill. Surely the hon. Gentleman must welcome the constructive way in which we are trying to improve the status and standing of the advisory committee. The amendments would work to that extent.

I shall comment briefly on amendment No. 35 and the group of amendments which are to be taken with it for debate. The amendments aim to extend both the powers and the independence of the advisory committee. It has been said time and again throughout the debate that the advisory committee is basically a tool or device of the Secretary of State. It has no independence and no real ability to gain legitimacy in the eyes of teachers or in the eyes of local authorities and their associations. We are saying that the committee should become independent of the Secretary of State and have the right to report to Parliament directly. On a number of occasions during the course of the debate the Secretary of State has suggested that he welcomes the greater involvement of Parliament. Our search for that middle ground has led to us wishing to give Parliament a greater role in the proceedings.

We are saying that if the amendments are accepted, there will be a process of direct reporting to Parliament from an independent body. In those circumstances we may be able to find other analogies in collective bargaining and industrial relations that will be similar to the machinery that we are suggesting. There will be no other example of workers who have moved from free collective bargaining to the independent advisory committee that is implied by the amendments. We put them forward very much as second best to collective bargaining. If the Minister is prepared to support these amendments, we shall at least get an advisory committee which, although independent of the Secretary of State, will have some powers and the ability to report to Parliament.

8.15 am

These amendments seek to remove from the advisory committee the total control and domination of the Secretary of State. If they are accepted, we shall have a better representation of membership and greater independence and powers. The Minister should recognise that if this committee is to do its job it needs these powers and this independence. That is why I ask the Committee to support the amendments.

Mr. George Howarth

My hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, Central (Mr. Fatchett) has made some telling points, several of which probably need emphasising.

The Bill refers to the advisory committee which will report on the remuneration and conditions of service of those in the teaching profession. On the surface that seems to be sensible—even acceptable—but while accepting the need to seek advice, we must ask what the committee will do in practice.

Clause 2(2) enables the Secretary of State to give directions to the committee in respect of financial and other constraints. How will he do so, how large will the financial and other constraints be, and what discretion, if any, will the committee have? If it has no independence, it will be a sorry business if, on the one hand, we set up an advisory body—with all the notions of consultation that that invokes—while on the other its powers and potential usefulness are so circumscribed as to render it powerless. That appears to be the direction in which it could go.

The word "direct" has sinister connotations; and given the recent history of industrial relations in education, one becomes worried. On looking further into the matter—as I have done—those worries become stronger.

Schedule 1 sets out in skeletal form the constitution and procedures of the proposed new body. First, the Secretary of State has, and will no doubt use, the power to appoint the committee. How will it be composed? That is a good question, but so far we have had very little illumination.

I suspect that it will be composed not of people committed to the education service or its salary structure and so on, but of people who will do the bidding of the Secretary of State. I predict that we shall not even get people with expertise and experience in industrial relations, local government or other equally appropriate disciplines. They will probably be people who owe some kind of debt of gratitude to the Secretary of State—yes men who will do the right hon. Gentleman's bidding. People might be appointed because they are politically acceptable. That is a bit worrying because someone who is politically acceptable to this Government is often unacceptable to the education movement and outside.

The Government might produce a list of people who are acceptable, but I fear that they will not. The danger in putting the appointments in the gift of the Secretary of State, past, present or future—in the short term at least—is that the power may be used to make political appointments.

If politically acceptable people are appointed and they do not do their job quite as the Government want, the Secretary of State has the right to remove anyone who in his opinion is unfit to perform his duties". What does "unfit" mean and who will decide who is "unfit"? Potentially, those words could encompass anyone who is simply unprepared to toe the Government line. What would happen if a politically acceptable appointee felt a rush of blood to the head and decided to be honourable? He would be removed as unfit. Is such a reserve power consistent with the apparent aim of conducting these matters in a balanced and sober way?

The proposal will widen the Government's ability to further abuse the education system. The Bill does not ensure the proper resolution of the central problems about which we are concerned. It does nothing to bring order and it inflames rather than settles issues at this time.

Mr. Dunn

It might help if I say a few words now and then listen to other contributions. The hon. Member for Leeds, Central (Mr. Fatchett), as usual, was kind and courteous in his comments about me. I have waited a long time for this opportunity to speak. I shall savour the opportunity since I have no idea what lies ahead.

Today was the first time that I have heard the hon. Member for Knowsley, North (Mr. Howarth) and I was worried about what he said about the appointments by the Secretary of State to the advisory committee. Because of his knowledge, the hon. Gentleman will know that successive Secretaries of State in Governments of both parties have made appointments to outside bodies. The University Grants Committee is, perhaps, the best example, but more recently appointments to the Committee for the Accreditation of Teacher Education were made by the then Secretary of State, my right hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, North-East (Sir K. Joseph). Neither those appointments nor others by previous Secretaries of State, were seen to be politically motivated. The appointees had strong views connected with industry, the trade unions or the theatre—which is not unknown to us. I should like examples of the type of abuse described by Opposition Members.

Mr. Andrew F. Bennett

What about district health authorities?

Mr. Fatchett

Will the Minister give way?

Mr. Dunn

In a moment. I want to answer the point made by the hon. Member for Denton and Reddish (Mr. Bennett). Because I am not qualified to judge outside the area for which I am responsible, I deliberately spoke about appointments to bodies in education. There may be some comments that could be made from time to time in a snide way about people who serve on local or area health authorities. In education there are no examples that I am aware of—there may be some known to other hon. Members—where there has been a political appointment to bring about the results predicted by the hon. Member for Knowsley, North.

Mr. Fatchett

Given the fact that the advisory committee will be so political and that its work will create much controversy, is it not reasonable to expect that people will look to bodies outside education for experience of appointments to Government bodies? In that context, the intervention of my hon. Friend the Member for Denton and Reddish (Mr. Bennett) is appropriate. We noted the Minister's reservation about some of those appointments. If the Minister has reservations, he will understand that many people recognise the political nature of those appointments and will ask, "If it happens in health, why shouldn't it happen over teachers' pay?".

Mr. Dunn

Because my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State will choose honourable men and women to serve on the advisory committee.

As we are talking about appointments to bodies that have to take difficult decisions, I should say that the UGC has made controversial decisions in recent years and CATE also has a difficult task in evaluating teacher training and education.

The Bill provides that responsibility for appointing members to the advisory committee shall rest with the Secretary of State. That is a matter of consent. The difficulty about accepting the amendments is that they are mischievous and perverse, because they would recreate something that we are trying to get rid of—a mark II Burnham committee.

Amendment No. 34 talks about membership being one third one third one third to particular interests. Amendments Nos. 213 and 215 seek to increase the minimum and maximum size of the committee. If we had a committee of 12 people it would be divided 4:4:4, but how would the Labour party decide which of the six unions and the other teacher interests, such as the Inner London Teachers Association, should take up the four seats? Would there be weighting according to membership, regional spread, responsibility spread and so on? The Opposition have not thought it out. With 4:4:4, so that not all six unions can be represented, we shall be back to the major Burnham committee problems when the NUT dominated the committee through sheer weight of numbers. There would be a tussle for seats.

People who were appointed to the committee to represent particular unions or teacher associations would constantly have to go back to their masters to decide what their policy was to be. The independence that the Opposition would like for the committee would not exist from the first minute of the first day.

Accountability is an important aspect of the debate. To whom would the ILTA be responsible if it were appointed to the committee.

Mr. Fatchett

Will the Minister give way?

Mr. Dunn

I promise that I shall give way in a moment. The matter of accountability is such that there may be nominations from employers, who might be Labour-dominated, and who then go back to their source, and there may be teacher unions, who would then go back to their source. The independence of the advisory committee, which genuinely is sought in the amendments, would not be brought about.

8.30 am
Mr. Andrew F. Bennett

Does the right hon. Gentleman accept that, quite frequently in arbitration cases, a neutral chairman is appointed and the employers nominate one person and the employees nominate another person? It would be easy for those three people to put forward someone who is independent and who they consider to be a fair-minded person. The Minister claimed that the Secretary of State was capable of doing that, so why can these groups not do it?

Mr. Dunn

This is not an arbitration concept. It is an advisory committee. The hon. Gentleman has been in politics for a fair while, as I have. He knows that a great deal is often done in an informal sense—in smoke-filled rooms, in bars or behind the Speaker's Chair—to achieve the same results. The hon. Member for Denton and Reddish is a man of the world. [Interruption.] I believe him to be a man of the world. I am sure that he must be. I should imagine that he knows precisely the nature and importance of informal exchanges as well as of formal exchanges. Constant toing and froing, from the advisory committee to the source of the nomination, will make the committee much more inflexible, much more dangerous and much less independent than the hon. Gentleman would like.

That is not the kind of advisory body that Conservative Members want. It is not, in our view, to be representative of particular vested interests. For the benefit of those who must already know, I repeat that we do not want any return to squabbling points of view and narrow sectarian approaches. The committee must be composed of people who can look objectively at the problems of the teaching profession, without fear of recall, censure or penalty. That means attracting and appointing independent people of standing to the advisory committee.

Mr. Fatchett


Mr. Kenneth Baker

Do not give way.

Mr. Fatchett

The Minister is talking about independence, and he is taking orders. Does the Minister not accept that, under these procedures the Secretary of State has a right immediately to dismiss? He said that there shall be no recall, as there would be under a system of local government or local authority accountability, but there is a system of recall. It is in the Secretary of State's office, and it is called dismissal.

Mr. Dunn

The dismissal by any Secretary of State would be subject to judicial review. Would recall to the National Union of Teachers headquarters be subject to the same review? I doubt it.

Mr. Batiste

My hon. Friend should be aware that the city of Leeds, which is temporarily under Labour control, has an abysmal record of recalling councillors who speak in opposition to the party line. The measures that my hon. Friend announced will be important. That fact should be well known to the hon. Member for Warley, East (Mr. Faulds).

Mr. Dunn

Labour control of any place is a temporary phenomenon. The point that my hon. Friend made is well known, and I am sure that he will expose it in the city of Leeds with which he has connections.

Opposition Members will have to wait to see who is on the committee. We have not even begun to put together a list of names. It must be understood that the Secretary of State will look for people of standing, integrity and independence of mind. The committee will not be the Secretary of State's poodle. It will not even be a Welsh corgi. It will exercise independent judgment, conduct independent analysis and arrive at independent conclusions.

It is suggested that my right hon. Friend should not refer matters to the committee or give it directions, but that it should decide of its own motion what matters to examine, or should have matters referred to it by local education authorities and teachers unions, or should consider matters only after their referral has been the subject of consultation.

The committee will, in any event, have quite a task to undertake. It will need some indication of what matters to examine and what priority to give them. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State and the holder of his office will be able to pick out issues of importance for the committee's attention. When he does so, I should be very surprised if others did not think that they were important. He will not make an unreasonable selection of issues. If all and sundry could refer matters to the committee, the committee would be swamped and would not be able to function. Of course, the Opposition would like that. It is right, of course, that references should come from one direction and that the committee should then take evidence on them from all interested parties.

Not so much in this debate but in earlier ones, there was an insistence that the results of the committee's work should be published. That insistence is unnecessary. I can give, on behalf of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State, an unqualified assurance that the committee's reports will be published. My right hon. Friend will place them in the Library and there will be no undue delays in publication.

I return to the point made by the hon. Member for Leeds, Central on dismissal. The Opposition have tried, and failed, to make something of the provision in the schedule that the Secretary of State may remove a member from office if that member is, in the opinion of the Secretary of State, otherwise unable or unfit to discharge the functions of a member. They imply that there is something political or sinister in that. As the Committee knows, that is entirely common form. It appears in the Employment and Training Act 1973 in relation to the Manpower Services Commission and in the Health and Safety at Work Act etc. 1974 in relation to the Health and Safety Commission. Of course, the Committee will know that the Secretary of State would need to have evidence on which he could properly base an opinion that the member was unable or unfit to perform his duties. If he made an unreasonable decision, it could be challenged by way of judicial review.

Mr. Rogers

Will the hon. Gentleman give way?

Mr. Kenneth Baker

Do not give way. The hon. Gentleman has not been here all night.

Mr. Dunn

I am an independent Member and I have given way a number of times.

Mr. Fatchett

The Secretary of State told the hon. Gentleman not to give way.

Mr. Dunn

I am conscious of that. But I want to help the Committee to make progress. As light breaks over Westminster, we must make progress.

I think that I have demonstrated that, although I understand the thrust of the amendments, it is my intention to suggest to the Committee that they be rejected.

Mr. Rogers

On a point of order, Mr. Armstrong. In view of the rather silly remark by the Secretary of State when I tried to intervene, is it now to be a condition of participating in the debate that an hon. Member should have been here all night? I do not think that the Secretary of State has been here all night.

The First Deputy Chairman

The hon. Member knows that that is not a point of order for me.

Dr. Marek

I shall certainly give way to my hon. Friend the Member for Rhondda (Mr. Rogers) if he chooses to intervene.

We have had a scandalous explanation of why we shall have an advisory body that will be dominated by the Secretary of State, will be accountable only to the Secretary of State, will be composed of placemen of the Secretary of State and will publish reports but not the reasons behind them. The Under-Secretary of State referred to other bodies, but he distanced himself somewhat from appointments in the Health Service. I shall be interested to read in the Official Report exactly what he said. He placed much emphasis on being able to appoint people from the Department of Education and Science who have integrity and who are capable of examining the issues objectively and reporting on them. But can he do that? Even if he can do it, he must convince the House, the public and the teachers that he has done it. Unless it is done openly, his case will not be very convincing.

I refer the Minister to the parallels with the University Grants Committee. Recently, the UGC carried out an exercise and published a report, but we do not know how it rated the various university departments and cost centres. There are rumours that it conducted the research by examining research papers produced during the past five years. This is relevant to the advisory body which the Minister proposes to set up. No one knows how the UGC carried out its work, because its operations are not published.

Mrs. Kellett-Bowman

If the hon. Gentleman were to speak a little louder, he would wake up his colleagues who are asleep on the Labour Benches. He is casting a slur on the work of the University Grants Committee, which consulted widely before making its determinations.

Dr. Marek

The hon. Lady is wrong. I may cast such a slur in what I am about to say, but so far all that I have said is that although the UGC produced a report—it consulted, but only with selected people—it did not explain how it went about its work and why it made the decision that it did. I hope that the hon. Lady will accept that. No one in the university system who is not a member of the UGC or one of the sub-committees knows exactly what went on in the UGC. Several academics in universities have been drawing comparisons between what should be cut a litle more and what should be cut a little less and the institutions from which the members of the UGC come. I do not suggest that there is more than a casual connection. However, it is for the UGC to prove that there is no causal connection between the institution from which a UGC member comes and the results for that institution. The matter is debated in unversity circles.

I suspect that the same thing will happen with this advisory body. Of course, it could be appointed from people who have integrity and can consider matters objectively, and no doubt its reports will be pulbished, but unless the reasoning and the papers behind the report are published, the public will be unable to judge the objectivity of any such reports. The Secretary of State has no intention of publishing all the papers. The Under-Secretary of State is shaking is head. Suspicion will, therefore, remain, and I am sorry to have heard such shallow reasoning by the Minister, who jumped up early before some of my hon. Friends could make their important contributions to the debate. I hope that the Minister will speak again in the debate.

ILO convention 151, article 8, states: The settlement of disputes arising in connection with the determination of terms and conditions of employment shall be sought, as may be appropriate to national conditions, through negotiation between the parties or through independent and impartial machinery, such as mediation, conciliation and arbitration, established in such a manner as to ensure the confidence of the parties involved. I quoted that convention earlier.

We have not heard a satisfactory reply from the Secretary of State. He dismissed it, although Britain is a signatory to the article. I wish to dwell on some of the words used in the article—"confidence" and "independent and impartial". Why should we accept from the Minister that the advisory committee will be independent and impartial? He says that it will be from his point of view. However, it will be made of people whom he has appointed and to whom he will refer matters and then receive their report. Why should we see them as independent and impartial?

Secondly, the paragraph at the end of article 8 says: to ensure the confidence of the parties involved. It does not say "party"—the Minister—but "parties"—the other side of the argument, the LEAs and the professional teacher organisations representing the teachers.

8.45 am

I should like an explanation from the Minister of how the form of advisory committee that he is setting up fits in with article 8 and why he thinks that this advisory committee will establish or ensure the confidence of the parties involved. I cannot see that. It will ensure the confidence of one of the parties, the Minister—there is no doubt about that—but I do not think that the Minister will argue with me that the teacher organisations will have no confidence in the advisory committee.

Other hon. Members want to speak and I shall not delay the Committee further. I have made two serious points. We want to see more confidence and impartiality. I understand the arguments on the advisory committee. The hon. Gentleman does not want it to be another Burnham committee. I do not necessarily agree with him, but I take his point and I understand his arguments. However, that does not mean that he cannot move some way towards meeting the requirements of article 8 of convention 151, which the United Kingdom as ratified. He could also take some lessons from what has happened within the UGC and the way in which that information has been disseminated, because I am sure that there are lessons there. He should try to avoid the same sort of thing happening with the advisory committee.

Mrs. Elizabeth Shields (Ryedale)

The most worrying implication of the Bill, not just for the education sector, which is naturally of the utmost importance to the country's future, but for other areas where a similar power may be built in, is the totalitarian control afforded to the Secretary of State.

There was much talk by the Minister earlier in the week of "consultation", but that consultation may count for nothing if the Secretary of State can overrule every suggestion, proposal or amendment, even after discussion and recommendation by the proposed advisory committee.

The Secretary of State is effectively saying to the teachers, the unions and the LEAs, "Heads I win, tails you lose." The whole principle of collective bargaining is being abandoned. Not only are the local authorities, which, as employers pay the greater part of teachers' salaries, being deprived of their negotiating rights, but so are the teachers' representatives.

The unprecedented attack on negotiating rights may be the most iniquitous part of the Bill. Those rights have been in existence since 1919 and, if superseded by the proposals, could mean the disfranchisement of about 400,000 teachers.

The standing joint committee was founded in order to bring stability into industrial relations in education through a national partnership composed of LEAs, teachers and the state. I recognise that, 60-odd years later, the reform of Burnham is needed, but the proposals before us are for complete centralisation.

Amendment No. 34 says that the major bodies concerned should be represented—both the unions most closely involved with the members of the profession and the teaching scene in the classroom, and of the LEAs, which have local responsibility for and knowledge of the schools in their areas.

If one compares the procedures relating to pay and conditions in the nursing profession, for example, there is obviously a difference of approach. The nurses, rightly, have an independent review body to discuss their pay which is separate from negotiations carried out by the health authorities and the nursing unions with regard to their conditions of work. According to these proposals, teachers will have a non-independent review body which will be able to discuss only what the Secretary of State says it may discuss.

Many hon. Members have been connected in the past with the education service. My connections are more recent than theirs. I am well aware of the frustrations of former colleagues and of the low level to which morale in the profession has sunk. Abolishing national representation, thereby preventing teachers from communicating through well-established union channels, will not make for good industrial relations—rather the reverse. I do not believe, however, that teachers will allow themselves to be steamrollered in this fashion.

The Secretary of State is heading for disaster if he takes hold of the educational reins in the way that is outlined in the Bill and makes himself virtually a dictator in education. Given the rapidity with which the Bill is being pushed through Parliament, he may achieve his objective. The numerical superiority of those who sit on the Government Benches may, unfortunately, ensure this, but amendments may receive a different reception in another place.

The Secretary of State should also reflect upon the fact that a dictatorship can lead to unwelcome and sometimes unpleasant reactions. The practical consequences of his actions will echo adversely ' through the educational establishments of this land. I join other Opposition Members in condemning such a move in the educational sector as unprecedented, unwise and completely undemocratic.

Mr. Peter Hardy (Wentworth)

I had intended to address my remarks to the Secretary of State for Education and Science, but he has disappeared. He may come back, and if he does I hope that his junior Ministers will remind him of the remarks that I shall address particularly to him.

My intervention is relevant to the amendment. It is also relevant to the point made by the hon. Member for Ryedale (Mrs. Shields). She referred to the lack of morale in the teaching profession. I was a schoolmaster for a very long time. I was president of my association when we went on strike for one day to secure recognition for Burnham purposes. In those days the Conservative Government were swifter in detecting the feelings of those in the teaching profession than they are today. It is a pity that the Government do not recognise that their first priority should be to restore morale rather than to introduce the arrangements that are embodied in the Bill.

In January next the Secretary of State is to address the north of England education conference at Wentworth Woodhouse in my constituency. I wish to convey the apology that I have sent to those who invited me to attend to the Secretary of State also. I have to attend a meeting elsewhere on the same day. It is important to refer to Wentworth, because something happened there about 100 years ago that is relevant to the Bill. It is right to tell the Committee about what happened then. In Wentworth there is a very good village school. It existed 120 years ago, and a maiden lady was the schoolmistress at that time. This was in the days when a reactionary 19th century Government applied the rule of payment by result.

When Her Majesty's inspector of schools arrived in Wentworth he decided that this lady was a very poor schoolmistress. His assessment of her teaching was "very wretched". The great house, Wentworth Woodhouse, which the Secretary of State is to visit shortly, is owned by the Earls Fitzwilliam. The Earl Fitzwilliam of the time took very seriously the patronage of his estate village. He was deeply concerned that Her Majesty's inspector of school's assessment of the lady was very poor. He came to the House of Lords, where he encountered the president of the board of education. He complained to him that Her Majesty's inspector of schools having had the audacity to give this lady a very bad assessment. Because of the way things were done in those days, shortly after Earl Fitzwilliam contacted the president of the board of education, Her Majesty's inspector of schools was asked to carry out a further inspection of this lady's achievements.

When the inspector arrived at Wentworth village school to review the case, he saw not merely the children of Wentworth, but the Earl Fitzwilliam, Countess Fitzwilliam, Lord Milton, their eldest son, who was usually a Member of Parliament—a Whig—and three or four assorted nobility. That was only a short time after the first assessment, but the strange thing was that the assessment that the inspector of schools made on the second visit showed a remarkable and astonishing improvement in the prowess and professional achievement of the teacher.

That story, which is relevant to the amendment—

Mr. Dunn

indicated assent.

Mr. Hardy

I am glad that the Minister is nodding his head in approval of that proposition.

That story illustrates several things. First, it illustrates that the Conservatives 120 years ago were much more responsive to the realities for people in the north of England in areas such as mine than they are now. Secondly, it illustrates that the Conservative party has changed dramatically from the principle of noblesse oblige, which led an important nobleman to become concerned about a humble schoolmistress. Thirdly, it illustrates that those who were in Parliament and knew their areas could affect decision making in a way that this Government do not like. It may illustrate that there was something wrong with the methods of assessing teachers in those days. It may even illustrate that something was wrong about preferment in the Church. I understand that shortly afterwards that inspector of schools was made a bishop. It may illustrate that the methods of assessment, the principles involved and the mechanics that applied in those days are essentially the principles and mechanics that will relate to the development of the supervision of teachers' pay and conditions by the various bodies that will be associated with that process under the Government's proposals.

History turns circles. We are circling away from a system which, by its historic chemistry, had begun to develop fairly in the post-war period until this Government began to set the profession on its head. The Government should understand that the unsatisfactory aspects of 19th century educational management will be developed in the late 20th century. Before it is too late, I suggest to the Minister that the matter should be reappraised. The amendment should command attention.

Mr. Rogers

One of the problems that we face on Labour Benches is the fact that yet again we have come up against a Secretary of State and Ministers who refuse to accept reasoned argument on amendments that are designed to help. The Under-Secretary said that the amendments were mischievous and perverse and that they were Burnham mark II. Often, one of the reasons for developing a mark II of any product is that an improvement is required. That is why we have tabled the amendments.

The amendments are mischievous and perverse in one sense, in that when we tabled them we anticipated the Government's response. It is the response that they have given to every sensible suggestion that has been made. As Labour Members know, they are dug into blind dogmatic hatred, in many ways, of anybody who earns a wage or salary. Anybody who is on fees or commissions or who charges whatever he likes for whatever he performs is the good guy in the Conservative party book, but anyone who does an eight-hour day and is paid a wage or salary is the one to be screwed in the Conservative economy. So we expected that response to these reasonable amendments. We in the Opposition do not see what is wrong in any way with employees being involved in or consulted about their pay conditions of work and so on. We consider that to be normal, rational and proper.

At the end of all this, the teachers will end up being treated differently from every other profession in the country. The status of the teacher will be downgraded as a result of being subjected to the conditions of the Bill. No longer will the post of a teacher in the community be looked upon as an honourable profession, to be ranked alongside doctors, lawyers, accountants and architects. They will be seen as someone who is simply employed at the rates of pay and the conditions of work laid down by the Secretary of State.

9 am

The Secretary of State is absent, as I suppose he has been on many occasions during the night, because he looked very sleek this morning, but perhaps I can ask the junior Ministers some questions that I hope will be answered in the reply to this debate. My first, question, which I ask as a Welshman is, how many Welsh people will be on the body as of right? It is part of the arrogance of the Department of Education and Science on this matter that it has not even considered that issue and the Under-Secretary of State did not mention Wales in anything that he said. Of course, this measure applies not only to England but to Wales. What representation will Wales have on the body? Is the Minister going to allow the peculiar problems that relate to Wales and Welsh education to be taken cognisance of in the advice that is received? I know that it is daft for me to ask for representation from Wales because we know that when the advice and reports are provided the Minister will ignore them anyway. However, we should put a clear marker down at this stage and I hope that the Minister replies he will say what input the Principality will have on the advisory committee.

When the Minister replies I hope that he will also be able to answer a point that was partly raised by my hon. Friend the Member for Wrexham (Dr. Marek). Will the papers and documents of the advisory committee be available for perusal by Parliament or is it to be another secret body to be kept under wraps with the only thing coming out at the end of the day being the Minister's decision? I hope that the Minister will be able to satisfy us on that. Will the report of the advisory body on any issue that has been referred to it by the Secretary of State be published?

Mr. Kenneth Baker


Mr. Rogers

I am glad that the Secretary of State has said that, because it has relieved us of one of our great fears.

Mention has been made—I shall not labour this because contributions should be brief at this stage—of the fact that the Secretary of State will be quite unilateral in his powers of appointment.

I greatly fear the way in which appointments have taken place in area health authorities in Wales since the Government took office. With the appointment of the Secretary of State for Wales we saw a clearing out of everybody who sat on those bodies who did not conform to the Secretary of State's potential views. We had ridiculous circumstances where people of great integrity, seniority and with great knowledge of the Health Service were dismissed and people were brought in who had no real knowledge of the Health Service and no real contact with it but happened to be friends or, in one instance, the solicitor, of the Secretary of State for Wales. I am not saying that that man was not a person of integrity, honour, fairness and intelligence but he did not have any background in that area and it was obviously a personal appointment of the Secretary of State for Wales. I hope that the Secretary of State for Education and Science will not go down that road in making his appointments.

One problem with this—I am sure that the Secretary of State will accept our fears on this issue—is that if he is to have such wide and arbitrary powers he must accept that we will be suspicious of them. The present Secretary of State may appoint a fair and honest committee of people with integrity and he may heed its advice, but that does not mean that all future Secretaries of State will do so. The profession and everyone else must be concerned at such a small body being given such arbitrary powers and reporting only to the Secretary of State.

Mr. Barron

The debate is going so well that I hesitate to intervene, but I wish to point out the great weakness of clause 2. I refer to the absence of any indication, either in the clause or in the Minister's speech, as to whether the local authorities and the teachers' unions and associations will in any way be represented on the advisory committee. I hope that the Minister will tell us, preferably before we divide the Committee on this, whether there is any intention to consult the various bodies and, if so, how it will be done.

Amendment No. 33 is one of the most helpful amendments that I have ever seen. It does not lay down powers sought by the Secretary of State but asks him to consult the education authorities and the teachers' unions and associations before the appointments to the committee are made public. I cannot see anything wrong with that. The Secretary of State should also regard it as his duty to consult the major parties in relation to any agreement or advice suggested by the advisory committee.

My hon. Friend the Member for Wrexham (Dr. Marek) mentioned convention No. 151 of the International Labour Organisation. Article 8 refers to independent and impartial machinery, such as mediation, conciliation and arbitration, established in such a manner as to ensure the confidence of the parties involved. How can any of the parties have any confidence in the advisory committee when the Secretary of State and the Minister will not say whether they are prepared even to consult, let alone take note or do as they are bid by the interests involved. Amendment No. 33 is perfectly reasonable. It would go some way, at least, towards ensuring that there is some confidence in the decisions coming from the advisory committee. The Minister described it as mischievous and perverse. That is a disgraceful reaction to a helpful amendment. I am sure that it would be supported by all the organisations that seem to be excluded from consultation by the Secretary of State.

I see that the Secretary of State and the Minister of State have their heads together. I hope that they will reconsider amendment No. 33 and accept that consultation has always been embedded in the machinery of public bodies and trade unions. We want the Government to help the negotiations rather than try to get rid of free collective bargaining negotiations, and thus fail to ensure that people get their rights and have confidence in what is being done by Whitehall.

Mr. Frank Dobson (Holborn and St. Pancras)

I apologise for not being here to hear the dawn chorus, but I do not intend to delay the Committee long.

The Government seem to be proceeding with this Bill, as with many others, on the basis of the old schoolmasterish principle that if it answers back shut it up, if it still answers back suspend it, and if it still answers back expel it. That is not a democratic approach. We want a society in which people are encouraged to answer back and have their say and a legitimate influence on all of the bodies that affect them.

The Burnham committee, flawed as everybody realises that it is, provides for teachers and their employers to have a major say in what happens to their pay. The Bill is just a product of the Government's "rent-a-creep" approach to public bodies. Whenever they have the opportunity, they get rid of representative bodies and replace them with appointed ones. The appointees are scarcely worthwhile. They are not people of stature because people of stature will not come forward to be appointed as creatures of the Government.

General Jaruzelski would be happy with schedule 1 and the terms of appointment. It is a long time since we heard the cant of Conservative Members about free trade unions in Poland, but all their cant did not lead them to do anything about helping free trade unions in Britain.

Mr. John Evans (St. Helens, North)

Is my hon. Friend aware that, since the Tories took office in 1979, they have put three Bills through the House—the Employment Acts of 1980 and 1982 and the Trade Union Act 1984—on the grounds that they are giving trade unions back to their members, whereas here they are taking trade unions away from their members? Would my hon. Friend care to comment on that?

Mr. Dobson

That is the nub of the argument about the Bill. The Government are saying that we can have free trade unions, it is just that they will not have a say in anything to do with pay and conditions.

It is common knowledge that the Government, led by the Prime Minister, ask of every potential public appointment, "Is this person one of our sort?" The Ministers who make the assessments, however, have proved themselves utterly unfit for public office. They will ask whether Mr., Mrs. or Ms. X is one of their sort and will properly reflect their views if appointed to the advisory committee.

I challenge the Secretary of State to get up now and guarantee that he will make available in the Library all of the information that he, his Department and Tory Central Office has about any of the people that they consider for appointment to the advisory committee.

Mr. Rogers

My hon. Friend might not be aware that the Minister said that he would appoint only honourable men. He did not mention honourable ladies.

Mr. Dunn

I did.

Mr. Rogers

In that case I withdraw my comment.

Mr. Dobson

My recollection tallied with that of my hon. Friend, but no doubt Hansard will show who is correct.

9.15 am
Mr. Caborn

We have seen this political vetting in many sectors since the Government have been in power, for example in the health authorities. A colleague of mine in Sheffield was the chair of one of the area health authorities for many years, but has now been removed because he would not comply with the privatisation diktats from Government. He has a wealth of knowledge about the industry and the services provided, but because he will not carry out Government dogma, he has been removed from his post. Could not such actions be repeated under the provisions of the Bill?

Mr. Dobson

I agree with my hon. Friend. In the health sector, there has been a tradition of making balanced appointments on the basis that people would reflect the public interest, and have a record of public service and so on. In this case, the Government are setting out to establish a body with the sole objective of ensuring that nobody with a track record of public service would dream of serving on the body.

It is an inherent tendency in anyone with power to appoint those who will agree with one, but some people manage to resist that. The Government have not, but they would also claim that they are getting a good quality of appointee, even among those who always agree with them. Therefore, it is worth while drawing attention to that part of schedule 1 that refers to those who have become bankrupt or made an arrangement with their creditors being dismissed from those bodies.

It is not long ago that one of the Government's appointees as chair of the south-west Surrey health authority, a Mr. Salmon, left that office because he became bankrupt. The Government had such faith in the financial and managerial skills of Mr. Salmon, that one of his previous appointments was to a group that was advising the Government on value for money in the National Health Service. He was one of the Prime Minister's sort, but he was so stupid as to go bankrupt because he bought a boatload of bananas that went rotten before he could get them to shore. Those are the sort of people that the Government are appointing, and we want to keep them out of our Health Service, and wish that they had never got into our education system.

There is a serious point to be made to those Tory Members who call themselves, and genuinely believe themselves to be, Conservatives. Many of them are not, by any definition. Those who regard themselves as Conservative take almost as a first principle, "He who rules best rules less." No one could accuse this Government on that fundamental Conservative belief. They are centralist and interfering, and they make change without any forethought. They get rid of institutions that have served for a long time, and substitute things that are almost bound to be cock-ups from the start. They do not give any value to our exisiting institutions or to the plural aspects of our country, to which most hon. Members and certainly Labour Members, would subscribe.

We subscribe to the view that there are and should be countervailing centres of power in our society, but Government Members utterly reject that proposition. That is why we reject the schedule and support the amendments. We accept that the amendments fall far short of producing a decent advisory committee because it is impossible by amendment to turn into something useful a measure which starts out profoundly flawed and incapable of performing the task it is supposed to perform. Tory Members and people wo regard themsleves as Conservatives should know that the Government are not Tories: they do not subscribe to any of the decent traditions of British Conservatism. That is why the Conservatives will be rejected at the next election.

Mr. Freud

This series of amendments looks at the opportunities for consultation. As I drove back here after my bath break between 5.30 and 8 o'clock, I listened—

Mr. Forth

Lucky you.

Mr. Freud

Lucky me, indeed. As I drove back I listened to BBC Radio 4 to hear about what was happening in the Committee. The announcer said that the Government were introducing a Bill for "imposed settlement." It is extraordinary that the Secretary of State, who prides himself not only on his use of English but on his correct use of taut English, should believe that such a thing as an imposed settlement exists. It is a contradiction in terms, and the only way it would have any relevance would be if the Secretary of State were to level with those people on whom he will try to impose a concordat. Neither the Bill nor the clause seeks a concordat.

I remind the Minister and the Secretary of State, who is absent, that the whole point of negotiation is that it provides a safety valve for people before they take more serious and damaging action. By removing that safety valve, the Secretary of State is jeopardising the well-being and continued education of our children.

Schedule 1 deals with the advisory committee. There is no intention of giving the teachers a fair deal. No attempt has been made to appoint to the committee anyone who will represent and speak up for the teachers or the employers.

Mr. Dunn

How does the hon. Gentleman know that?

Mr. Freud

I know because the committee will have no power. It cannot vote for its own chairman because he will be imposed on the committee.

Mr. Dunn

Will the hon. Gentleman give way?

Mr. Freud

Not at the moment. Allow me to finish my sentence.

This schedule shows contempt for the teachers and for the negotiating procedure and will impose on the teachers what they do not want.

Mr. Dunn

The hon. Gentleman said there would be no one to speak up for the teachers or for the local education authorities. How does he know? We have not even begun to formulate precisely the interests that will be represented on the advisory committee.

Mr. Tony Banks

That is disgraceful.

Mr. Freud

The hon. Member for Newham, Northwest (Mr. Banks) is right. It is disgraceful. It is the job of the legislation to provide facilities for teachers and persuade them that the Bill will look after their interests. The schedule says that anyone who: has become bankrupt or made an arrangement with his creditors, is incapacitated by physical or mental illness, will be removed from the committee. Can the Minister tell us who will be the judge of mental illness? Many people accused his predecessor of being less than totally sane. Would that be a criterion for removing someone from the committee? The schedule also mentions anyone who has been absent from two or more consecutive meetings of the Committee, otherwise than for a reason approved by the Committee". Even if that is thought to instill a certain demand on attendance, there is then a catch-all phrase: or who is in the opinion of the Secretary of State otherwise unable or unfit to perform his duties I presume that unfit to perform his duties would mean unfit in the eyes of the Secretary of State to do what he would like him to do, which is to behave in the way in which the patsies who will be put on to the advisory committee will be expected—

Mr. Dunn

I am not sure whether the hon. Gentleman was in the Chamber when I spoke a few moments ago. Will he confirm that he was not? If he was not, I direct him to read the report of my remarks in Hansard. I covered the precise point that he is making in my remarks a few moments ago.

Mr. Freud

If the Minister has said anything to disprove what I am accusing him of, those words should by rights be in the Bill, and more particularly in the schedule. A teacher will read the legislation and ask himself what it contains to protect him. He will want to know what machinery exists to enable teachers, through their unions and democratic negotiating procedure, to be able to bring their justifiable views to the Government's attention. He will not read a report in Hansard to ascertain what the Minister might or might not have said during an early-morning sitting.

Mr. Tony Banks

Is it not a fact that when a Bill is being considered in Committee it is incumbent upon Members, and certainly Ministers, to ensure that all the good intentions that the Minister of the day might have are set out in clauses? If there is to be a subsequent challenge of an Act in the courts, the judges will not be allowed to read Hansard to ascertain what the Minister was saying at the time and what his good intentions were. Ministers move from one Department to another as ministerial changes are made. Legislation must be precise, and in this instance it is not.

Mr. Dunn

The Bill is precise.

Mr. Freud

I agree entirely with the hon. Gentleman. It is all very well for the Minister to say from a sedentary position that the Bill is precise, but that can be said only when everything is set out in the Bill, and that is not the position at present.

On Second Reading, I asked the Minister of State to tell me of any other group of employees who is as disfranchised by negotiating legislation as the teachers will be when the Bill becomes an Act. What other special cases are there? The police are better represented than the teachers will be, and the same can be said of nurses, firemen and water authority employees. As an education spokesman, I deeply resent 400,000 teachers being disadvantaged and disfranchised by being put into a special category of non-representation by this Bill.

I accept that the Secretary of State deserves power and I do not object to the renunciation of the 1965 Act, but I mind very much what is being put in its place. History will show that it is the wrong measure at the wrong time and that it has been introduced after insufficient consultation. Over the next hours, or days, we shall attempt to persuade the Government to accept that the Bill is capable of amendment to satisfy those who look to us to provide decent legislation for their negotiating system.

Mr. Evans

I wish briefly to express my contempt for the authors of the Bill. This is ne of the vilest measures ever to be put before the House of Commons. Those who have produced it are not democrats and should be ashamed of themselves. The Bill exposes the complete and utter hypocrisy of the Tory party and all its works.

I intervened in the debate a short while ago to draw the attention of the House to the fact that the Government have produced three major Bills since 1979 directed to the affairs of the trade union movement. They were the Employment Act 1980, the Employment Act 1982 and the Trade Union Act 1984. We were repeatedly told by Secretaries of State and Ministers for Employment that the Bills had one express purpose—to give trade unions back to trade unionists. The thrust and purpose of the Government's exercise was to democratise the trade union movement. I refer to part I of the Trade Union Act 1984. At the time, the Government insisted that it was aimed at ensuring that trade unionists had the right to elect their executive councils. This clause—

9.30 am
The Second Deputy Chairman of Ways and Means (Sir Paul Dean)

Order. I hope that the hon. Gentleman is coming towards the end of his preamble and will now address himself to the amendment, which relates to the membership of the advisory committee.

Mr. Evans

The preamble is necessary, Sir Paul. Clause 2 informs us The Secretary of State shall appoint an Advisory Committee on School Teachers' Pay and Conditions to examine and report to him on such matters relating to the remuneration and other conditions of employment of school teachers"— in other words, to do the job that those employed in the teaching profession collectively join together to perform, and that is to form a trade union.

The Government have taken away the trade union from those employed in the teaching profession. They have taken away their executive council. They have removed from the executive council the functions that any trade union should perform — negotiating wages and conditions. The Government, who repeatedly force Bills through the House on the basis of giving trade unions back to their members, have produced a Bill that effectively removes trade unionism from the teaching profession.

Mr. Dunn


Mr. Evans

The Minister says, "Rubbish." Will he tell the House precisely what the National Union of Teachers and other trade unions will do in future in relation to negotiating the pay and conditions of their members? I shall give way to the Minister if he can tell me how I am talking rubbish. The Minister blusters. He cannot answer the question. The clause is aimed at smashing the National Union of Teachers and other teachers' trade unions. Over 400,000 teachers will not forget that fact in the next general election. They will make sure that they, their families and the parents of their pupils will remember that the Tory party forced this evil Bill through the House. They will take their revenge on the Tory party at the next general election.

Mr. Fatchett

This has been a unique debate. We had to wait for nearly 16 hours to hear the first words from the Under-Secretary of State, and we had to wait virtually the same length of time to hear the initial contribution to the debate by the hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East (Mr. Freud), who speaks on behalf of the Liberal party. The debate has confirmed many of our fears.

My hon. Friend the Member for Rother Valley (Mr. Barron) referred briefly to ILO convention 151, article 8. He said that the Government's action would transgress that article. The Government's defence is a weak one, but I shall not comment on it legalistically. Their defence is that by simply allowing trade unions the right to make a case and to forward it to the Secretary of State they will satisfy ILO convention 151, article 8. If that is what the Government mean by participation and democracy, it shows what little respect they have for the views of other people and trade unions.

The hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East made an important point that has come through in the debate generally. He talked about collective bargaining acting as a safety valve. We had a long discussion earlier this morning about the powers and role of ACAS. A number of my hon. Friends pointed out that collective bargaining operates as a safety valve and provides a mechanism whereby industrial conflict can be institutionalised and peace preserved, not just in our schools, but in many other industrial relations aspects. The Bill will take away that layer of institutionalised conflict and bring the teachers' unions much closer towards raw politics. When we return to this debate, as we will from time to time, Ministers will be said to be responsible for politicising the teaching profession. I agree with the analysis of the hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East on that point.

The Under-Secretary of State said with great relish that the amendments were "mischievous" and "perverse". I felt that he had waited some time to use those adjectives. It is churlish to call our measurs "mischievous" and "perverse" when we are trying to maintain a certain level of debate.

My hon. Friend the Member for Holborn and St. Pancras (Mr. Dobson) made some good points which suggest that many of our fears about the Secretary of State filling the advisory committee with his friends, who do his political work for him, are well founded. That is why we have taken such a strong line against the Bill and the advisory committee. The only point on which I disagreed with my hon. Friend was when he apologised for the fact that he had missed the dawn chorus this morning. He need not worry about that. There is a chance tomorrow and on other days to consider many other amendments, so why should he hide the talents that are clearly there to be used on other occasions?

If the Under-Secretary of State considers our amendments to be "mischievous" and "perverse", he should note that what is really mischievous and perverse about the Bill is that it will replace collective bargaining with an advisory committee comprised of place men appointed by the Secretary of State. That is why we shall seek a Division on amendment No. 35.

Question put, That the amendment be made:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 93, Noes 216.

Division No. 31] [9.33 am
Alton, David Holland, Stuart (Vauxhall)
Ashdown, Paddy Howarth, George (Knowsley, N)
Ashley, Rt Hon Jack Hoyle, Douglas
Atkinson, N. (Tottenham) Hughes, Roy (Newport East)
Banks, Tony (Newham NW) John, Brynmor
Barron, Kevin Jones, Barry (Alyn & Deeside)
Beckett, Mrs Margaret Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald
Beith, A. J. Lamond, James
Bennett, A. (Dent'n & Red'sh) Lewis, Ron (Carlisle)
Bermingham, Gerald Lloyd, Tony (Stretford)
Bray, Dr Jeremy Lofthouse, Geoffrey
Bruce, Malcolm McKay, Allen (Penistone)
Buchan, Norman McKelvey, William
Caborn, Richard McTaggart, Robert
Carlile, Alexander (Montg'y) Marek, Dr John
Clark, Dr David (S Shields) Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Clarke, Thomas Martin, Michael
Clay, Robert Maxton, John
Clelland, David Gordon Michie, William
Coleman, Donald Millan, Rt Hon Bruce
Cox, Thomas (Tooting) Mitchell, Austin (G't Grimsby)
Craigen, J. M. O'Brien, William
Dobson, Frank Orme, Rt Hon Stanley
Eadie, Alex Owen, Rt Hon Dr David
Evans, John (St. Helens N) Park, George
Fatchett, Derek Parry, Robert
Field, Frank (Birkenhead) Pavitt, Laurie
Fields, T. (L'pool Broad Gn) Pendry, Tom
Fisher, Mark Pike, Peter
Flannery, Martin Powell, Rt Hon J. E.
Foster, Derek Powell, Raymond (Ogmore)
Foulkes, George Radice, Giles
Freud, Clement Richardson, Ms Jo
Golding, Mrs Llin Robertson, George
Hancock, Michael Rogers, Allan
Hardy, Peter Ross, Ernest (Dundee W)
Harrison, Rt Hon Walter Rowlands, Ted
Heffer, Eric S. Sheldon, Rt Hon R.
Hogg, N. (C'nauld & Kilsyth) Shields, Mrs Elizabeth
Silkin, Rt Hon J. Wardell, Gareth (Gower)
Skinner, Dennis Wareing, Robert
Smith, C.(Isl'ton S & F'bury) Welsh, Michael
Smith, Rt Hon J. (M'ds E) Wrigglesworth, Ian
Spearing, Nigel Young, David (Bolton SE)
Stott, Roger
Thorne, Stan (Preston) Tellers for the Ayes:
Tinn, James Mr. Don Dixon and
Wainwright, R. Mr. Ron Davies.
Wallace, James
Adley, Robert Gale, Roger
Aitken, Jonathan Gardiner, George (Reigate)
Alexander, Richard Gilmour, Rt Hon Sir Ian
Amess, David Glyn, Dr Alan
Ancram, Michael Goodlad, Alastair
Arnold, Tom Gow, Ian
Ashby, David Grant, Sir Anthony
Atkinson, David (B'm'th E) Greenway, Harry
Baker, Rt Hon K. (Mole Vall'y) Gregory, Conal
Baker, Nicholas (Dorset N) Griffiths, Peter (Portsm'th N)
Batiste, Spencer Gummer, Rt Hon John S
Bellingham, Henry Hamilton, Hon A. (Epsom)
Bendall, Vivian Hamilton, Neil (Tatton)
Benyon, William Hanley, Jeremy
Biffen, Rt Hon John Hargreaves, Kenneth
Blackburn, John Harris, David
Blaker, Rt Hon Sir Peter Haselhurst, Alan
Bonsor, Sir Nicholas Havers, Rt Hon Sir Michael
Bottomley, Mrs Virginia Hawkins, Sir Paul (N'folk SW)
Bowden, A. (Brighton K'to'n) Hayward, Robert
Bowden, Gerald (Dulwich) Heathcoat-Amory, David
Braine, Rt Hon Sir Bernard Henderson, Barry
Bright, Graham Heseltine, Rt Hon Michael
Brinton, Tim Hicks, Robert
Brittan, Rt Hon Leon Hill, James
Browne, John Hind, Kenneth
Bruinvels, Peter Hirst, Michael
Bryan, Sir Paul Hogg, Hon Douglas (Gr'th'm)
Buck, Sir Antony Holland, Sir Philip (Gedling)
Bulmer, Esmond Holt, Richard
Burt, Alistair Howard, Michael
Butcher, John Howarth, Gerald (Cannock)
Butterfill, John Hunt, David (Wirral W)
Carlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln) Hurd, Rt Hon Douglas
Chope, Christopher Jackson, Robert
Churchill, W. S. Jessel, Toby
Clark, Hon A (Plym'th S'n) Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)
Clark, Dr Michael (Rochford) Kellett-Bowman, Mrs Elaine
Clark, Sir W. (Croydon S) Key, Robert
Cockeram, Eric King, Roger (B'ham N'field)
Colvin, Michael King, Rt Hon Tom
Coombs, Simon Knight, Greg (Derby N)
Cope, John Knight, Dame Jill (Edgbaston)
Cormack, Patrick Knowles, Michael
Corrie, John Knox, David
Couchman, James Lamont, Rt Hon Norman
Critchley, Julian Lang, Ian
Crouch, David Lawler, Geoffrey
Currie, Mrs Edwina Lawson, Rt Hon Nigel
Dicks, Terry Lilley, Peter
Dorrell, Stephen Lloyd, Sir Ian (Havant)
Douglas-Hamilton, Lord J. Lloyd, Peter (Fareham)
Dover, Den Lord, Michael
du Cann, Rt Hon Sir Edward Lyell, Nicholas
Dunn, Robert McCrindle, Robert
Durant, Tony MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Eggar, Tim MacKay, John (Argyll & Bute)
Evennett, David McLoughlin, Patrick
Fallon, Michael McQuarrie, Albert
Favell, Anthony Madel, David
Finsberg, Sir Geoffrey Major, John
Fookes, Miss Janet Malins, Humfrey
Forsyth, Michael (Stirling) Malone, Gerald
Forth, Eric Marland, Paul
Fowler, Rt Hon Norman Mather, Carol
Franks, Cecil Mawhinney, Dr Brian
Freeman, Roger Maxwell-Hyslop, Robin
Fry, Peter Mayhew, Sir Patrick
Mellor, David Shaw, Giles (Pudsey)
Merchant, Piers Shaw, Sir Michael (Scarb')
Meyer, Sir Anthony Shelton, William (Streatham)
Mills, Sir Peter (West Devon) Shersby, Michael
Mitchell, David (Hants NW) Silvester, Fred
Moate, Roger Sims, Roger
Montgomery, Sir Fergus Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield)
Morris, M. (N'hampton S) Spencer, Derek
Morrison, Hon P. (Chester) Spicer, Michael (S Worcs)
Moynihan, Hon C. Squire, Robin
Neale, Gerrard Stanbrook, Ivor
Neubert, Michael Stern, Michael
Nicholls, Patrick Stevens, Lewis (Nuneaton)
Norris, Steven Stewart, Andrew (Sherwood)
Onslow, Cranley Stewart, Ian (Hertf'dshire N)
Ottaway, Richard Tapsell, Sir Peter
Page, Sir John (Harrow W) Taylor, John (Solihull)
Patten, J. (Oxf W & Abgdn) Taylor, Teddy (S'end E)
Pawsey, James Tebbit, Rt Hon Norman
Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth Thompson, Donald (Calder V)
Percival, Rt Hon Sir Ian Thompson, Patrick (N'ich N)
Powell, William (Corby) Thurnham, Peter
Powley, John Townend, John (Bridlington)
Price, Sir David Trotter, Neville
Proctor, K. Harvey Twinn, Dr Ian
Raffan, Keith van Straubenzee, Sir W.
Raison, Rt Hon Timothy Waddington, David
Rathbone, Tim Wakeham, Rt Hon John
Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon Waller, Gary
Ridley, Rt Hon Nicholas Ward, John
Ridsdale, Sir Julian Wells, Sir John (Maidstone)
Rifkind, Rt Hon Malcolm Whitfield, John
Rippon, Rt Hon Geoffrey Wiggin, Jerry
Roberts, Wyn (Conwy) Wilkinson, John
Robinson, Mark (N'port W) Wood, Timothy
Roe, Mrs Marion Woodcock, Michael
Rossi, Sir Hugh Young, Sir George (Acton)
Rowe, Andrew Younger, Rt Hon George
Rumbold, Mrs Angela
Sackville, Hon Thomas Tellers for the Noes:
Sainsbury, Hon Timothy Mr. Michael Portillo and
Scott, Nicholas Mr. David Lightbown.

Question accordingly negatived.

Mr. Freud

I beg to move amendment No. 50, in page 1, line 23, leave out subsection (3) and insert— '(3) The Secretary of State shall inform the Committee of any financial or other constraints which he considers to be relevant to their consideration of the remuneration and other conditions of employment of teachers, and as to the time within which they are to submit their report.'.

The Second Deputy Chairman

With this it will be convenient to take the following amendments: No. 55, in page 1, line 23, leave out 'direction' and insert— 'such advice as he considers to be appropriate.'.

No. 59, in page 1, line 24, leave our from third 'to' to end of line 3 on page 2 and insert— 'the financial or other constraints and as to the conditions to which they shall have regard in discharging their functions under this Act.'.

No. 60, in page 2, line 1, leave out 'are' and insert 'may'.

No. 61, in page 2, line 1, leave out: 'and financial or other constraints to which their recommendations are to be subject,'.

No. 62, in page 2, line 1, leave out 'or other'.

No. 63, in page 2, line 1, leave out 'constraints' and insert 'consideration'.

No. 64, in page 2, line 1, leave out: 'to which their recommendations are to be subject' and insert— 'which they may take into accont in their recommendations.'.

No. 81, in page 2, line 2, after 'subject', insert— 'which shall include the need to maintain and improve the morale of school teachers'.

No. 82, in page 2, line 2, after 'subject', insert— 'which shall include the need to expand provision for teachers' remuneration and other improvements to conditions of service'.

No. 83, in page 2, line 2, after 'subject', insert— 'which shall include the achievement and maintenance of a salary structure for teachers which pays proper regard to the value of good classroom teaching.'.

No. 84, in page 2, line 2, after 'subject', insert— 'which shall include the value of a properly-financed education service.'.

No. 87, in page 2, line 3, at end insert— '() In any report to the Secretary of State the Committee shall state the considerations to which they have had regard in making their recommendations, together with any comments they may wish to make on the appropriateness of the relevant considerations, and as to any other considerations which would in their view be appropriate for them to have taken into account.'.

No. 88, in page 2, line 3, at end insert— '() The Committee may after the making of a direction under sub-section (2) above publish any considerations which they may consider to be relevant in addition to those specified in the direction, and they may take these into account in making any recommendations to the Secretary of State as though they were specified in the direction.'.

No. 93, in page 2, line 6, leave out 'direction' and insert 'advice'.

It will also be convenient I understand to discuss the next group of amendments: No. 94, in page 2, line 6, leave out 'such' and insert 'all'.

No. 95, in page 2, line 6, after 'authorities', insert— ', organisations representing parents.'.

No. 96, in page 2, line 7, leave out 'such' and insert 'all'.

No. 97, in page 2, line 7, leave out 'as appear to them to be concerned'.

No. 98, in page 2, line 8, leave out 'any' and insert 'all'.

No. 99, in page 2, line 8, leave out from 'education' to 'and' in line 9 and insert 'authorities'.

No. 100, in page 2, line 10, leave out 'reasonable opportunity of submitting' and insert— 'period of at least four weeks to submit'.

No. 102, in page 2, line 11, at end insert— '(4A) Such arrangements for submitting evidence and making representations shall include reasonable opportunity for the parties in subsection (4) (a) to discuss and negotiate between them such issues as they require so to consider jointly, whether in the presence of the Committee or otherwise.'.

Mr. Freud

It is very good to have a morning audience that was significantly missing during the night—[HON. MEMBERS: "Oh."] I think that it would be fair to tell hon. Members who have arrived now that they have missed some virtuoso performances. [HON. MEMBERS: "So have you."] I have been here. Above all was the virtuoso performance by the hon. Member for Bolsover (Mr. Skinner), who is a graduate of the Quasimodo school of deportment and who kept the House up for some two hours.

This series of amendments covers the relationship between the Secretary of State and the advisory committee. That relationship is not dissimilar from that of Idi Amin and his army in their heyday, in that the Secretary of State may say what he will and the advisory committee will do what it is told to do. The Bill allows the Secretary of State to give directions to the committee. Our amendment maintains the link between the Secretary of State and the committee. We concede, for example, that he will have input regarding finance, but we would give him the power only to inform the committee and not to direct it. In that way, the committee would pursue its investigations in possession of all the relevant information but independent from the Secretary of State. Above all, our amendment is searching for a modicum of independence in the clause. I hope that when the Minister of State replies, she will give her attention to the independence that there will be on the part of members of the committee.

Reading the clause, we think that there will be no interest in what the committee might have to say — perhaps a passing interest, but in all the verbiage that we have had, it has become abundantly clear from the Government's responses that they are not interested in anything but the imposition of the Bill on teachers and employers. I have yet to meet a teacher or employer who feels that this emergency measure will be of benefit to them. Certainly it will in no way enhance their status.

The hon. Member for Leeds, Central (Mr. Fatchett), who accused me of not speaking for some 14 hours, should concede that in a marathon, it is rather pointless to accuse someone who is running second, third and fourth leg of not contributing greatly to the first. I shall now listen to what the Minister has to say—

Mr. Fatchett

I should be interested to hear whether the hon. Gentleman wants to hear from the Minister about the principles of running a marathon. The hon. Gentleman said that it was sensible to keep the sprinters until the end of the marathon. We see that he is well fitted for that role. There is a danger that one needs runners in the earliest parts of the marathon. The Minister may well feel that the alliance has not provided us with runners for the earlier part of the marathon.

Mr. Freud

That intervention was not only stupid but pathetic. We had a five and a seven-hour debate on minor amendments, which many people with a selectivity of wisdom would have felt were less important than the major amendments that are now coming up.

It seems crucial that we should get the advisory committee right. These amendments deal with the relationship between the Secretary of State and the advisory committee. The Minister was not, of course, being asked to comment on the aesthetics of athletics or marathon running but on the relationship that she feels she will have with the committee and on the power the committee will have to be independent to the extent of choosing its own chairman, to select its own vice-chairman, to make decisions and to have genuine contact with the teachers and the employers so that they will have input that will not be brushed aside by the Secretary of State, but will have statutory powers.

Mr. Peter Pike (Burnley)

I wish to speak to amendment No. 81, which states: which shall include the need to maintain and improve the morale of school teachers. I recognise that with the length of time that some debates have gone on, many issues have already been covered. Obviously with one's eye on the time, one cannot, at this stage cover all the points that are being made in this group of amendments.

I believe that the morale of the teachers educating our children is vital. It is true to say that over the past few years the morale of teachers has reached a low ebb. Indeed, until there are real and positive changes in direction by the Government as a whole and a willingness to provide the resources necessary for education, that situation will continue. We believe that to set up this body is moving in the wrong direction, but we recognise that the Government will be able to force the Bill through because of their majority. However, if it has to go through we believe that morale has to be one of the issues considered by the advisory committee so that it is given proper consideration and importance.

If the morale of teachers is not good it affects the education of all our children. We want to ensure that the teachers have sufficient interest to be able to give our children a good education. I know that many people have said on numerous occasions that education is one of the biggest single investments that we make for the future of the country. Therefore, it is important that that investment is used to its full advantage.

We recognise the Government's argument, but we obviously disagree with their approach. However, I am sure that both sides of the Committee recognise that if we are to have a good education system we need teachers whose morale is at a high level. Therefore, it is important to overcome the difficulties of the past couple of years.

The mail on this issue from my constituency is only just beginning to come through because there was a postal strike in my constituency last week. However, even in the past 24 hours I have opened letters from teachers who are expressing their concern about the way in which the Government are moving and who believe that the Government and the Secretary of State will have so many powers that the power of negotiation and free collective bargaining will rest solely with the Secretary of State. I know that the Secretary of State will argue that that is not the objective and the Government will obviously argue that it is a step forward. However, one has to accept that those working in the education profession, the teachers themselves, do not see it as a step forward. We must accept the view of the teachers on this. The Government have already turned down an amendment which merely provided for consultation on appointments to the advisory committee. Far from improving, morale among teachers is likely to deteriorate. That would be most regrettable.

10 am

If the Government have any serious intention to improve the situation in education I hope that they will accept that morale is of great importance. They always say that they do, of course, but, as my hon. Friend the Member for Rother Valley (Mr. Barron) pointed out, what Ministers say in debate is not the law. The law will be the wording of the Bill when it becomes an Act. If the Government believe that improving morale is important, perhaps they will show it by accepting at least amendment No. 81. I am sure that that would be welcomed, not just by the teachers' unions but by all in the teaching profession as well as by the parents of our schoolchildren. This should not be a political issue. It should attract the support of Members on both sides of the House.

At this stage of the proceedings I shall limit my comments to just one aspect of the amendments, but I am sure that my hon. Friends will wish to speak on the other important points raised by this group of amendments. I believe that the Government recognise the crucial importance of morale among teachers. If that is true, let them show it by accepting amendment No. 81 and securing a modest improvement in the retrograde step that they have taken in introducing the Bill.

Mr. Michael Hancock (Portsmouth, South)

It is nice to participate at long last, having sat through six hours of yesterday's proceedings before concluding that what was happening was of no use whatever.

Mr. Tristan Garel-Jones (Vice Chamberlain of Her Majesty's Household)

It is nice to see the hon. Gentleman in the Chamber at long last.

Mr. Hancock

I am glad to be here.

The hon. Member for Burnley (Mr. Pike) talked about the morale of teachers. I do not believe that prolonging the agony, with one Opposition Member after another trying to gain brownie points from the teacher by speaking for as long as possible, will do anything whatever to boost the morale of teachers, parents, pupils at school or students in sixth form colleges who have seen the dramatic change that has taken place in education in the last five years. It is a travesty to suggest that our proceedings here yesterday, today and perhaps even tomorrow will do anything to alter the teachers' distruct of the Secretary of State's philosophy of trying to hammer things through or that they will induce any kind of confidence among teachers or their union representatives. Nevertheless, the exercise has to be gone through.

With the Secretary of State, I sat through the long agonies on the Local Government Bill—[HON. MEMBERS: "What is he talking about?"] I am talking about the need to boost morale. I went through that earlier exercise in the mistaken belief that prolonging the Committee stage and speaking for hour upon hour was boosting the morale of councillors trying to save the GLC and the metropolitan councils. I learnt that that was completely untrue. The metropolitan councillors who spoke to me afterwards said that they thought the whole thing was a sham and a farce.

I went through a similar exercise last year and, for my sins, prolonged the agony of the Dockyard Services Bill by speaking for close on one hour simply to drag out the debate. I was asked whether I was good for an hour. [Interruption.] I have several letters which confirm that I am better than good for more than one hour. It was suggested that it was time that the alliance did its bit to delay the Bill.

The Second Deputy Chairman

Order. I do not know whether the hon. Gentleman is good for an hour at the moment, but his speech must be on this group of amendments.

Mr. Hancock

I have good news for the House—an hour is not forthcoming today.

Amendment No. 50 is a step in the right direction. My hon. Friend the Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East (Mr. Freud) made the alliance's stance on the Bill clear on Second Reading, so criticisms about lack of speeches are ill founded. If the Secretary of State can see through the mud that he has tried to pour over the issue, he will see that amendment No. 50 is a real opportunity to go some small way towards redressing the difficulties that many people envisage.

Amendment No. 50 would allow a wider understanding of the problems which the Secretary of State, county councils and the advisory committee will face. It might also give the people who wrote to me a better understanding of what is going on. Opposition Members have quoted from letters. The Association of Polytechnic Teachers wrote to me expressing its anxieties. If amendment No. 50 is accepted, its representations might be considered. It is represented on Burnham, but the Bill would shut off that representation.

Mr. Fatchett

I do not want to interrupt the hon. Gentleman's flow, but if he had been here earlier he would know that the hon. Member for Leeds, North-West (Dr. Hampson) asked questions about the Association of Polytechnic Teachers and that the Minister gave various commitments. The hon. Gentleman would delay the Committee if he went through those arguments again when the Minister has already given such clear commitments.

Mr. Hancock

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman, but the amendments to which he is referring fell. Commitments from Ministers mean nothing, because Ministers and Governments change. Consideration of polytechnic teachers' interests would be embodied in law, however, if amendment No. 50 were accepted. We can all talk about what went on in the past, but so far no amendment has succeeded. Whatever comes after the failure of these amendments should be seen as trying to embrace all the points that have been made.

I had hoped that the Government would realise, not from the expressions of concern and doubt in the House and the Committee, but by the concern of those at the coal face—the teachers, the parents and the students—the real problems that they are facing. I represent Hampshire, which employs 26,000 teachers. It has been beset with problems over the past two or three years, and those problems have not been helped by the Government's attitude or by that of the trade unions. However, that concern has been real and well founded. It is a sad reflection that something as important as the future of our children and the fabric of our education have been pushed even further over the abyss by this legislation.

The Bill would be a disaster in educational terms, and should be rejected. The alliance has made its views clear time and again. We would like to see a tripartite approach to negotiations, with the Government, the local authorities as the employers, and the teachers all playing a role, and with the opportunity for parents to have an input. I hope that the people of this country will realise that the only way that success will come to education, and morale in the profession improved, is not through manipulation but through a change of Government to a new Government with a strong realisation that education is as important as our existence on this planet. The only party hat has come near giving anything like that support to education is the alliance.

I hope that that message goes out. Amendment No. 50 is well worth supporting, and I am sure that all Opposition Members will see that. I hope that those Conservative Members who care about education will see that something that widens involvement in education is critical. We should all be grateful for that opportunity.

I am only sad that today has denied us two events. One is seeing the Leader of the Opposition, on his return from the United States, combating the Prime Minister. One wonders whether there is not a link between today's events and the fact that we shall be denied that opportunity.

The Second Deputy Chairman

Order. I hope that the hon. Gentleman will not wander too far away from the amendment.

Mr. Hancock

I was about to wander back to a sedentary position. The other event that the House will be denied is my asking question No. 1 at Prime Minister's Question Time. I am bitterly disappointed about that. The question would have been directed to the events in the House over the past few days and the future of education. I should have liked the right hon. Lady as a former Secretary of State for Education and Science, to explain—

The Second Deputy Chairman

Order. The hon. Gentleman must not wander into tomorrow, if tomorrow never takes place.

Mr. Hancock

I was hoping to draw into my disappointment the fact that my question would have urged the Prime Minister to look carefully at amendment No. 50 and realise the merits of it, and how her colleagues had retreated from their duty in failing to support it. I urge the House to support it, because it gives us a real opportunity to redress some of the damage to education that has been done by the Government over the last three or four years.

Mrs. Rumbold

I am sorry that I cannot follow the simile about marathon races, because I have never participated in such events although I know that many people do participate. I am sure that the hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East (Mr. Freud) would have been excellent at that sport. If he would like to join me in a swim I would be more than happy to challenge him at any time.

I am glad that, in moving his amendment, the hon. Gentleman recognised that the advisory committee will need to work against the background of the relevant financial constraints. For the interim body we have concluded that the Secretary of State ought to have a more precise power to give directions to the committee about its considerations and its financial or other constraints, because the committee's recommendations will be subject to those constraints as well as to the time within which it has to report.

The power to give directions should be of considerable benefit to the committee during its interim life. For example, it would be quite stupid for the advisory committee remit not to take into account the financial position of local authorities and I am sure that no Opposition Member would suggest otherwise. The committee will also need to operate within the realistic framework of what local authorities can afford. Most local authorities operate within such a framework.

Other amendments have a common purpose—to weaken the control of the Secretary of State in determining matters upon which the committee is to advise and deciding within what constraints it should operate. I shall give two examples of this type of weakening. If the amendments were accepted the Secretary of State would not even be able to direct the committee that it ought to have in mind various considerations. Instead, he would be able only to give it advice and clearly, that would not be a sensible way for the advisory committee to set about its task. Obviously, and not surprisingly, the Opposition would rather not permit the Secretary of State to advise the committee that its recommendations should be subject to certain financial considerations or, indeed, to any constraints. No doubt they would prefer the committee to assume that resources are totally limitless. It would be folly if the advisory committee's remit did not take into account the financial position of local authorities.

10.15 am
Mr. Tony Banks

An advisory committee made up of reasonably intelligent men and women will not do what the Minister suggests—take no notice whatever of financial conditions and be limitless in its approach? It is unrealistic to suggest that. The Minister cannot say that about people.

Mrs. Rumbold

Of course we expect the advisory committee to work within financial constraints, and it would be helpful if the Secretary of State could advise it about the kind of financial constraints under which it will work. I accept the hon. Gentleman's point. Because they will be reasonable people, we expect that that is the way in which they will operate.

Mr. George Park (Coventry, North East)

Does the Minister realise that by using the word control she reveals the huge gap between us in the approach to this problem that we all want to see solved? In normal negotiations both sides would set out the position as they see it. The Minister would set down what he saw as the restraints and the teachers' organisations would put forward their case. That is why the Opposition are trying through amendments to persuade the Minister to come back to a negotiating posture, so that all the pros and cons, the restraints and the advantages, can be set on the table and freely negotiated. If that were possible, we would arrive at a mutual agreement. We would have peace in the schools and teachers would know that they had taken part in negotiations for a settlement and had not had a settlement imposed upon them.

Mrs. Rumbold

The hon. Gentleman is plausible, but the intention behind the amendment is to restrict the role of the Secretary of State in regard to the work of the interim advisory committee. The open-endedness of the terms of reference that Opposition Members would wish to see go very much along the lines that have been set out during the debate. It is important to remember that the advisory committee is being brought into place to replace arrangements that have failed. In turn, the committee will be succeeded, we hope, in due course, by other arrangements, which will have been duly discussed by the parties concerned, which will have been consulted.

In the brief time that the advisory committee will be in existence it will have a job to do. It will need some direction on the matters relating to pay and conditions of service on which it is to concentrate. I suggest that that is a proper function for the holder of my right hon. Friend's office. That function is to give assistance and any direction that it is appropriate to give on other constraints to which the recommendations are to be subject. It is on the basis of that clear approach that the committee should be able to give of its best.

Labour Members and the hon. Member for Portsmouth, South (Mr. Hancock) spent some time discussing the raising of morale in the teaching profession. The hon. Gentleman's opposition to the Government's reasonable proposition is the factor that will damage the teachers most in the long term. Our proposals include a substantial pay increase for teachers next year and the putting into place of an effective system of pay determination in the medium term.

Mr. Hancock

I understand what the Minister is saying, and no one appreciates the need for teachers to have a decent pay rise more than I do. I support that proposition wholeheartedly. I shall be interested to know whether the hon. Lady considers that amendment No. 50 will cause teachers to think that they will not have better vehicle for negotiations in future. I shall be interested also to know whether she can state to what she objects in amendment No. 50. If she reads it carefully, she will appreciate that its wording is far better than the relevant passage in the Bill. I think that the hon. Lady owes those who are associated with the amendment a proper explanation of what is it she sees that will constrain the Secretary of State, other than telling the truth to his appointees.

Mrs. Rumbold

I have already paid tribute to those who tabled amendment No. 50 in so far as it recognises that there is a need to have a financial constraint placed upon the interim committee. My right hon. Friend and I understand what those who are associated with the amendment have tried to do. We do not accept that it is quite as good or accurate as the relevant passage in the Bill, but we recognise the attempt that has been made to put forward their point of view.

The hon. Member for Portsmouth, South contended that the low morale of teachers would continue if the Bill were to be enacted. I am trying to explain to him as best as I can—poorly, I know—that it is our belief that the proposals that are set out in the Bill will give the teachers stability and the certain knowledge that there will be a system for determination of their pay in the medium term. This will enable them to raise their morale and to return to work feeling that there is at least a Government who care about the way in which their pay structure should be dealt with and the way in which they operate within the schools. We feel that that is most important.

A number of other amendments have been brought to the attention of the Committee. There are issues such as the advisory committee having the discretion to decide which association of local education authorities appears to it to be concerned. It is possible that some authorities could form themselves into a group or association that had no common interest in teachers' pay and conditions. It would be somewhat irrelevant for the Government to accept amendments of that character, and most of the amendments before us fall into that category. I suggest that the Committee rejects them.

Mr. Fatchett

At this stage of the debate, it may be useful to state the official Opposition's position in relation to amendment No. 50. The hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East (Mr. Freud), the spokesman for the Liberal party, said that the Liberals had prioritised amendment No. 50. It was an amendment of supreme and significant importance. If hon. Members have a policy of priorities and pick on particular issues, it is important that we develop a strategy at the early part of the debate.

It is clear that the alliance strategy has worked. Alliance Members waited until amendment No. 50 was under discussion, to "'major" on it, to use an American expression. Liberal Members had not spoken until 9.45 am, when the hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East spoke for 17 minutes. He preserved himself for his contribution to the debate on this important amendment. Alliance Members did not intervene. They saved all their fire power for amendment No. 50. So far, the total contributions to the debate, in this process of prioritising, by the alliance parties—even with the hon. Gentleman's contribution—comprised 36 minutes contribution to the total debate over 118 hours. Without trying to be too much of a mathematician, that totals 3.33 per cent. between the two parties. Clearly—[AN HON. MEMBER: "It is like an opinion poll".] And it is like an opinion poll rating. Clearly, the policy of prioritising amendment No. 50 worked perfectly. Alliance Members waited until that point.

Nobody would disagree with the purpose of the amendment. To a great extent, it is self-fulfilling and self-satisfying. We will support the amendment because any attempt to get some information out of the Secretary of State as to the contraints under which the advisory body will operate will be of benefit. If alliance parties Members examine their own amendment, they will see that it is badly drafted. I shall ask my hon. Friends to support it, but they may be worried about supporting it for certain reasons. I do not know whether the Minister commented upon this matter. The alliance amendment states: The Secretary of State shall inform the Committee of any financial constraints". If political parties claim to believe in the disclosure of information into the public domain, it would be important that not only does the Secretary of State inform the advisory committee but that he makes that information available to the relevant parties.

If we are to "major" on an amendment, it is crucially important that that amendment is right. It may take us back to some of the arguments that we used in which we suggested that there had been a rush from Second Reading to Committee. If there had been more time, the inconsistencies of the amendment would have been noted.

I ask my hon. Friends to support the amendment simply on the ground that we wish more constraints to be placed upon the advisory committee. We say to the alliance parties, "When you do it again, please do better. Please make sure that you think through all the implications. If you are to have a flow of information, we would like it in the public domain because that is where it should be". We previously thought that that was the policy of the alliance parties. It clearly is not the case. Maybe this belief in secrecy has characterised the alliance parties' contribution to the debate.

Mr. Rogers

The clause emphasises the central role that the Secretary of State intends to take in the future settlement of teachers' demands about pay and conditions of work. The Minister said that the committee should have regard to the financial position of local authorities. In saying that, the Minister put the importance of local authorities in the payment and employment of teachers at the centre of the debate. It is strange that she should emphasise that the local authorities' financial position should be one of the main considerations of the committee, because it is not intended that they should be represented on it. Thus local authorities will have to pick up the bill for 54 per cent. of the teachers' remuneration without having any say.

10.30 am

The Minister and her Friends continually say, "Why should the Burnham committee reach a settlement but the Government have to pick up the tab?" They imply that the Government are dispensing their own money, and not money that belongs to the people.

Clause 2 proposes setting up a body that will recommend the amount of expenditure made by the local authorities—they will pay the bulk of it—without giving them any representation. Therefore, the Government are confounded and defeated by their own argument. They will not accept the amendment because of their dogmatic attitude towards wage earners. That just shows the nonsense of their blind hatred towards people who earn salaries and wages, as opposed to those who can fix commissions or charge fees to earn their living.

I am sorry that the hon. Member for Portsmouth, South (Mr. Hancock) has left the Chamber, because I should have liked to address my comments to him directly. I have to admit that I am one of those hon. Members who had a reasonable night's sleep, and who came back early this morning to participate in the debate. It was a pleasure for me to see the newly risen hon. Member for Portsmouth, South come into the Chamber, looking very spruce, to address us this morning—[Interruption.] It is no surprise that he is known as the part-time hon. Member for Portsmouth, South. However, I did not like the fact that he made me feel so sad. He said that he was sad, but I have never heard a more depressing speech. He spoke first about the length of the debate—not that he had been here. He then said that we were not giving support and morale to the teachers, although he did not even suggest an alternative. He spoke about travesties and disasters, and said that the debate was a sham and a farce. I imagine that he spent the night consulting some thesaurus. It was suggested that he might be good for a speech lasting an hour, but if it was going to be an hour of that, I am sure that we would all have found our way to a clinic.

Mr. Fatchett

Last night I intervened when my hon. Friend the Member for Bolsover (Mr. Skinner) commented on the absence of members of the alliance parties and, among other things, on the way in which ACAS works. I reminded my hon. Friend that at a rally yesterday in Central hall, Westminster, which was organised by the National Union of Teachers, the SDP spokesman, Anne Sofer, committed the SDP to fighting the Bill line by line. Does my hon. Friend the Member for Rhondda (Mr. Rogers) feel that Anne Sofer's remarks were consistent with the policies set out by the hon. Member for Portsmouth, South?

Mr. Rogers

I shall not comment on the position of either Anne Sofer or the hon. Member for Portsmouth, South, but I am sorry that the hon. Gentleman has not returned to the Chamber. I shall not stray into discussing ACAS, because, as the hon. Member for Watford (Mr. Garel-Jones) knows, our flat Welsh vowels create problems for us in pronouncing the second part of ACAS.

My hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, Central (Mr. Fatchett) is absolutely right in saying that the SDP gives promises but does not fulfil them. Alliance Members come to the Chamber and try to depress us. Hon. Members were enjoying the night, and found a great thrill in the arguments of the debate, the constructive attitudes of the Opposition, and the negative arguments adopted by the Government. Then the hon. Member for Portsmouth, South came here in such a defeatist mood, and that has made me very sad.

The amendment is vital and, as my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, Central said earlier, Opposition Members will have to support it. Indeed, the alliance amendments are important because they seek to put the position of the local authorities and of the advisory committee at the centre of the argument.

Mr. Tony Banks

The Minister said that those on the advisory committee could, if they were not given directions about financial constraints, act in such a way as to assume that there were no constraints. I do not know who the Minister or the Secretary of State are considering appointing to the advisory committee. Indeed, that is one of the problems. I have not sat through all the debate. I was here until about 2 am, but then I left for four or five hours. Therefore, I do not know whether the Minister has told the Committee the names of the people who will be on the advisory committee.

Mrs. Rumbold

No, I have not.

Mr. Banks

If the Minister has not advised hon. Members of that, one can assume only that the list exists somewhere. I imagine that it will be difficult to get anybody with any self-respect to serve on the advisory committee. However, as there is little self-respect in the Tory party these days, the Minister's job will not be that difficult, because those appointed will probably all be hand-picked Tories. Even if they are hand-picked Tories, it is difficult to accept that they will not be aware of the general financial problems. They would be peculiarly detached if they were not aware of the financial positions of the Government and the local authorities.

I also found it strange that the Minister said that, if one has an advisory committee, one gives it directions on financial matters. I should have thought that an advisory committee would be able to look at a situation impartially and to offer advice to the Secretary of State. Under the Bill, the Secretary of State is under no compulsion to accept any advice that he is given. Why bother to give the advisory committee directions if the Secretary of State can ultimately ignore its advice, even if that advice is within the constraints of the directions that he has given them?

Quite frankly, the committee will be a stooge or a poodle committee. Whatever adjective one uses, nobody with any self-respect or standing in education is likely to want to serve on that sort of committee. Therefore, we shall look with great interest at the names of those people. Perhaps some people hope to serve and to be rewarded eventually by elevation to the other place, or by the baubles that the Prime Minister can hand out from time to time.

I did not propose to speak to the amendment until my hon. Friends started discussing the fact that education authorities pay about 54 per cent. of the costs of teachers' salaries. Overall, that is no doubt true. However, in the absence of block grant, the Inner London education authority pays 100 per cent. of the pay bill of inner London teachers. Under the Bill, it will lose any effective influence that it has, other than through consultation. It is unacceptable that the Government, who pay nothing at all, should have the temerity to say that they will tell ILEA, which pays everything, what it must do. That is thoroughly unacceptable, and that is why I support the amendment.

Mr. Freud

After 10 hours of debate, I suggested that we might make progress. There were enraged cries from Labour Members who explained that, far from taking their time on a specific batch of amendments, they were using the Committee of the whole House procedure as we would normally use such procedure upstairs in Committee. With the promise that that would be continued throughout the passage of the Bill, I did not beg to move, That the Question be now put. I have been here for all but three hours of the debate—[Interruption.] The Chair refused the closure, and I did not seek to move it again, although that debate continued for another five and a half hours. However, 15½ hours of debate on clause 1 and less than three hours of debate on clause 2 would seem to fall short of that promise.

The hon. Member for Leeds, Central (Mr. Fatchett) said that we majored on amendment No. 50. We certainly believe that the committee's constitution is of considerable importance. Indeed, we consider clause 2 to be of great importance. The amendment asks that The Secretary of State shall inform the Committee of any financial or other constraints which he considers to be relevant to their consideration of the remuneration and other conditions of employment of teachers, and as to the time within which they are to submit their report. However flawed the amendment may be in the eyes of hon. Members in that it does not make a great song and dance about freedom of information, it remains eminently acceptable. I cannot see why the Minister should look into the middle distance or why she should do anything but accept it. If the hon. Member for Leeds, Central wants to add the rider that all information should be freely given to those who want to be in receipt of it, we will certainly not object.

The hon. Member for Burnley (Mr. Pike) has left the Chamber, but he made a relevant point when he said that the teachers' morale was crucial. If we can get any good out of this defective legislation, it must be to persuade the teachers that it will, to some extent, be to their benefit. To date, a vast amount of time has been taken up in acccusations and counter accusations about the absence of hon. Members at specific times. It is only fair to put on record that we have been here for 18½ hours so far, and no hon. Member can remain conscious in the Chamber for that long. It is twice as long as an HGV driver is allowed to drive under EEC regulations. I hope, therefore, that hon. Members will stop scoring cheap points about the temporary absences of certain hon. Members.

Throughout this debate, the Benches of all three participating parties have been manned. If the alliance bench has not been as heavily manned as other Benches, the iniquities of our electoral system are to blame. However, on a percentage basis we are even now more heavily represented in the Chamber than any other party.

Mr. Rogers

I hope that the hon. Gentleman will accept that we were not criticising him or his Liberal colleagues who have participated in the debate. We were stung into retaliating because no SDP Member was present. The hon. Member for Portsmouth, South (Mr. Hancock) had the gall to come into the Chamber and to castigate hon. Members who had been in the Chamber for 18½ hours. We were not scoring cheap political points but responding to the hon. Gentleman's cheek in saying that. I hope that the hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East (Mr. Freud) will accept that intervention in the spirit in which it is made.

The Second Deputy Chairman

Now that we have got that off our chests, I hope that we can return to the amendments.

10.45 am
Mr. Freud

I would, of course, accept absolutely anything in the spirit in which it was offered. However, my hon. Friend the Member for Portsmouth, South (Mr. Hancock), who has been here for much longer than the average hon. Member, made an important point when he voiced the concern of his constituency teachers.

Mr. Hanley

Look at the voting records.

Mr. Freud

That sort of attitude is totally unconstructive.

The Minister spoke of a more precise power that was to be given to the Secretary of State. I wonder what she means. At present, the Secretary of State has the power to ignore any contribution. Clause 3 states: Where the Advisory Committee has reported to the Secretary of State on any matter, he may, after consulting—

  1. (a) such associations of local education authorities as appear to him to be … desirable."
That will not make teachers feel wanted or respected. The clause also refers to such organisations representing school teachers as appear to them to be concerned". We want teachers and employers to have the right to have some input into the advisory committee.

I realise that the Minister has things to say to the Under-Secretary of State, and that she would rather do that than listen to the debate. However, it is absurd to make us sit through proceedings on this Bill if she does not intend to listen to our reasonable amendments. This series of amendments would make the teachers and employers respect the committee a little more than they will do, given that the Bill is so negative. They should, therefore, be accepted by Opposition Members. Indeed, although there may be internal sniping, the Opposition are united in disagreeing with the Bill and all that it represents. I therefore ask all hon. Members—heaven knows, there are few enough in the House, and we had more at 3 am than we have now—to vote in favour of the amendments, and against this nasty little Bill.

Question put, That the amendment be made:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 137, Noes 224.

Division No.32] [10.48 am
Adams, Allen (Paisley N) Blair, Anthony
Alton, David Boothroyd, Miss Betty
Anderson, Donald Bruce, Malcolm
Archer, Rt Hon Peter Caborn, Richard
Ashdown, Paddy Callaghan, Jim (Heyw'd & M)
Ashley, Rt Hon Jack Carlile, Alexander (Montg'y)
Ashton, Joe Carter-Jones, Lewis
Atkinson, N. (Tottenham) Clark, Dr David (S Shields)
Bagier, Gordon A. T. Clarke, Thomas
Banks, Tony (Newham NW) Clay, Robert
Barron, Kevin Clelland, David Gordon
Beckett, Mrs Margaret Clwyd, Mrs Ann
Bennett, A. (Dent'n & Red'sh) Cocks, Rt Hon M. (Bristol S)
Bermingham, Gerald Coleman, Donald
Conlan, Bernard Madden, Max
Cook, Frank (Stockton North) Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Cook, Robin F. (Livingston) Martin, Michael
Corbett, Robin Maxton, John
Cox, Thomas (Tooting) Maynard, Miss Joan
Craigen, J. M. Meacher, Michael
Crowther, Stan Meadowcroft, Michael
Cunliffe, Lawrence Michie, William
Cunningham, Dr John Millan, Rt Hon Bruce
Davies, Ronald (Caerphilly) Mitchell, Austin (G't Grimsby)
Dewar, Donald Morris, Rt Hon A. (W'shawe)
Dixon, Donald O'Brien, William
Dormand, Jack Orme, Rt Hon Stanley
Dubs, Alfred Owen, Rt Hon Dr David
Eadie, Alex Park, George
Eastham, Ken Parry, Robert
Evans, John (St. Helens N) Pavitt, Laurie
Fatchett, Derek Pendry, Tom
Fields, T. (L'pool Broad Gn) Pike, Peter
Fisher, Mark Powell, Raymond (Ogmore)
Flannery, Martin Radice, Giles
Foot, Rt Hon Michael Raynsford, Nick
Foster, Derek Roberts, Ernest (Hackney N)
Foulkes, George Rogers, Allan
Freud, Clement Ross, Ernest (Dundee W)
Garrett, W. E. Ross, Stephen (Isle of Wight)
Godman, Dr Norman Rowlands, Ted
Golding, Mrs Llin Sheldon, Rt Hon R.
Gould, Bryan Shields, Mrs Elizabeth
Gourlay, Harry Shore, Rt Hon Peter
Hamilton, James (M'well N) Short, Ms Clare (Ladywood)
Hamilton, W. W. (Fife Central) Short, Mrs R.(W'hampt'n NE)
Hancock, Michael Silkin, Rt Hon J.
Hardy, Peter Skinner, Dennis
Harrison, Rt Hon Walter Smith, C.(Isl'ton S & F'bury)
Heffer, Eric S. Smith, Rt Hon J. (M'ds E)
Hogg, N. (C'nauld & Kilsyth) Snape, Peter
Howell, Rt Hon D. (S'heath) Soley, Clive
Howells, Geraint Spearing, Nigel
Hughes, Simon (Southwark) Steel, Rt Hon David
Janner, Hon Greville Stott, Roger
John, Brynmor Straw, Jack
Johnston, Sir Russell Thomas, Dr R. (Carmarthen)
Jones, Barry (Alyn & Deeside) Thorne, Stan (Preston)
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald Tinn, James
Kennedy, Charles Wainwright, R.
Kirkwood, Archy Wardell, Gareth (Gower)
Lambie, David Wareing, Robert
Lamond, James Weetch, Ken
Leadbitter, Ted Winnick, David
Lloyd, Tony (Stretford) Wrigglesworth, Ian
Lofthouse, Geoffrey Young, David (Bolton SE)
McCartney, Hugh
McKay, Allen (Penistone) Tellers for the Ayes:
McKelvey, William Mr. A. J. Beith and
MacKenzie, Rt Hon Gregor Mr. James Wallace.
McTaggart, Robert
Adley, Robert Brandon-Bravo, Martin
Aitken, Jonathan Bright, Graham
Alexander, Richard Brinton, Tim
Amess, David Brittan, Rt Hon Leon
Ancram, Michael Bruinvels, Peter
Aspinwall, Jack Buchanan-Smith, Rt Hon A.
Baker, Rt Hon K. (Mole Vall'y) Buck, Sir Antony
Baker, Nicholas (Dorset N) Butcher, John
Baldry, Tony Butterfill, John
Banks, Robert (Harrogate) Carlisle, John (Luton N)
Batiste, Spencer Carlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln)
Bellingham, Henry Cash, William
Bendall, Vivian Chalker, Mrs Lynda
Biffen, Rt Hon John Channon, Rt Hon Paul
Blaker, Rt Hon Sir Peter Chope, Christopher
Bonsor, Sir Nicholas Churchill, W. S.
Boscawen, Hon Robert Clark, Hon A. (Plym'th S'n)
Bottomley, Mrs Virginia Clark, Dr Michael (Rochford)
Bowden, A. (Brighton K'to'n) Clark, Sir W. (Croydon S)
Bowden, Gerald (Dulwich) Cockeram, Eric
Braine, Rt Hon Sir Bernard Colvin, Michael
Coombs, Simon Lloyd, Sir Ian (Havant)
Cope, John Lloyd, Peter (Fareham)
Cormack, Patrick Lyell, Nicholas
Corrie, John McCrindle, Robert
Critchley, Julian MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Currie, Mrs Edwina MacKay, John (Argyll & Bute)
Dickens, Geoffrey McLoughlin, Patrick
Dicks, Terry McQuarrie, Albert
Dorrell, Stephen Madel, David
Douglas-Hamilton, Lord J. Major, John
Dunn, Robert Malins, Humfrey
Durant, Tony Malone, Gerald
Dykes, Hugh Marland, Paul
Edwards, Rt Hon N. (P'broke) Marlow, Antony
Eggar, Tim Mather, Carol
Evennett, David Maude, Hon Francis
Eyre, Sir Reginald Mawhinney, Dr Brian
Fallon, Michael Maxwell-Hyslop, Robin
Fookes, Miss Janet Mayhew, Sir Patrick
Forsyth, Michael (Stirling) Mellor, David
Fowler, Rt Hon Norman Meyer, Sir Anthony
Fox, Sir Marcus Mills, Sir Peter (West Devon)
Franks, Cecil Mitchell, David (Hants NW)
Freeman, Roger Moate, Roger
Fry, Peter Montgomery, Sir Fergus
Gale, Roger Morris, M. (N'hampton S)
Galley, Roy Morrison, Hon P. (Chester)
Gardiner, George (Reigate) Moynihan, Hon C.
Garel-Jones, Tristan Neale, Gerrard
Gilmour, Rt Hon Sir Ian Neubert, Michael
Glyn, Dr Alan Nicholls, Patrick
Goodlad, Alastair Onslow, Cranley
Gow, Ian Oppenheim, Phillip
Greenway, Harry Ottaway, Richard
Gregory, Conal Page, Sir John (Harrow W)
Griffiths, Peter (Portsm'th N) Patten, Christopher (Bath)
Gummer, Rt Hon John S Patten, J. (Oxf W & Abgdn)
Hamilton, Hon A. (Epsom) Pattie, Geoffrey
Hamilton, Neil (Tatton) Pawsey, James
Hampson, Dr Keith Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth
Hanley, Jeremy Percival, Rt Hon Sir Ian
Hannam, John Powell, William (Corby)
Hargreaves, Kenneth Price, Sir David
Haselhurst, Alan Proctor, K. Harvey
Havers, Rt Hon Sir Michael Raffan, Keith
Hawkins, Sir Paul (N'folk SW) Raison, Rt Hon Timothy
Hayward, Robert Rathbone, Tim
Heathcoat-Amory, David Rhodes James, Robert
Henderson, Barry Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon
Hicks, Robert Ridley, Rt Hon Nicholas
Hill, James Ridsdale, Sir Julian
Hind, Kenneth Rifkind, Rt Hon Malcolm
Hirst, Michael Roberts, Wyn (Conwy)
Hogg, Hon Douglas (Gr'th'm) Robinson, Mark (N'port W)
Holland, Sir Philip (Gedling) Roe, Mrs Marion
Holt, Richard Rossi, Sir Hugh
Howard, Michael Rowe, Andrew
Howarth, Gerald (Cannock) Rumbold, Mrs Angela
Hunt, David (Wirral W) Sainsbury, Hon Timothy
Hunter, Andrew Sayeed, Jonathan
Hurd, Rt Hon Douglas Scott, Nicholas
Jackson, Robert Shaw, Giles (Pudsey)
Jessel, Toby Shaw, Sir Michael (Scarb')
Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N) Shelton, William (Streatham)
Jones, Robert (Herts W) Shepherd, Colin (Hereford)
Key, Robert Shersby, Michael
King, Roger (B'ham N'field) Sims, Roger
King, Rt Hon Tom Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick)
Knight, Greg (Derby N) Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield)
Knight, Dame Jill (Edgbaston) Spencer, Derek
Knowles, Michael Spicer, Michael (S Worcs)
Knox, David Squire, Robin
Lamont, Rt Hon Norman Stanbrook, Ivor
Lang, Ian Stern, Michael
Latham, Michael Stevens, Lewis (Nuneaton)
Lawler, Geoffrey Stewart, Andrew (Sherwood)
Lawson, Rt Hon Nigel Stewart, Ian (Hertf'dshire N)
Lennox-Boyd, Hon Mark Tapsell, Sir Peter
Lester, Jim Taylor, John (Solihull)
Lilley, Peter Taylor, Teddy (S'end E)
Tebbit, Rt Hon Norman Wells, Sir John (Maidstone)
Thatcher, Rt Hon Mrs M. Whitfield, John
Thompson, Donald (Calder V) Wiggin, Jerry
Thompson, Patrick (N'ich N) Winterton, Nicholas
Thornton, Malcolm Wolfson, Mark
Townsend, Cyril D. (B'heath) Wood, Timothy
Trippier, David Woodcock, Michael
Twinn, Dr Ian Young, Sir George (Acton)
Vaughan, Sir Gerard Younger, Rt Hon George
Wakeham, Rt Hon John
Walker, Rt Hon P. (W'cester) Tellers for the Noes:
Waller, Gary Mr. David Lightbown and
Ward, John Mr. Michael Portillo.

Question accordingly negatived.

Question put, That the clause stand part of the Bill:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 229, Noes 145.

Division No. 33] [10.59 am
Adley, Robert Fallon, Michael
Aitken, Jonathan Fookes, Miss Janet
Alexander, Richard Forsyth, Michael (Stirling)
Amess, David Fowler, Rt Hon Norman
Ancram, Michael Fox, Sir Marcus
Aspinwall, Jack Franks, Cecil
Baker, Rt Hon K. (Mole Vall'y) Freeman, Roger
Baker, Nicholas (Dorset N) Fry, Peter
Baldry, Tony Gale, Roger
Banks, Robert (Harrogate) Galley, Roy
Batiste, Spencer Gardiner, George (Reigate)
Bellingham, Henry Garel-Jones, Tristan
Bendall, Vivian Gilmour, Rt Hon Sir Ian
Biffen, Rt Hon John Glyn, Dr Alan
Blaker, Rt Hon Sir Peter Goodlad, Alastair
Bonsor, Sir Nicholas Gow, Ian
Boscawen, Hon Robert Greenway, Harry
Bottomley, Mrs Virginia Gregory, Conal
Bowden, A. (Brighton K'to'n) Griffiths, Peter (Portsm'th N)
Bowden, Gerald (Dulwich) Gummer, Rt Hon John S
Braine, Rt Hon Sir Bernard Hamilton, Hon A. (Epsom)
Brandon-Bravo, Martin Hamilton, Neil (Tatton)
Bright, Graham Hampson, Dr Keith
Brinton, Tim Hannam, John
Brittan, Rt Hon Leon Hargreaves, Kenneth
Bruinvels, Peter Haselhurst, Alan
Buchanan-Smith, Rt Hon A. Havers, Rt Hon Sir Michael
Buck, Sir Antony Hawkins, Sir Paul (N'folk SW)
Butcher, John Hayward, Robert
Butterfill, John Heathcoat-Amory, David
Carlisle, John (Luton N) Henderson, Barry
Carlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln) Hicks, Robert
Cash, William Hill, James
Chalker, Mrs Lynda Hind, Kenneth
Channon, Rt Hon Paul Hirst, Michael
Chope, Christopher Hogg, Hon Douglas (Gr'th'm)
Churchill, W. S. Holland, Sir Philip (Gedling)
Clark, Hon A. (Plym'th S'n) Holt, Richard
Clark, Dr Michael (Rochford) Howard, Michael
Clark, Sir W. (Croydon S) Howarth, Gerald (Cannock)
Cockeram, Eric Hunt, David (Wirral W)
Colvin, Michael Hunter, Andrew
Coombs, Simon Hurd, Rt Hon Douglas
Cope, John Jessel, Toby
Cormack, Patrick Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)
Corrie, John Jones, Robert (Herts W)
Critchley, Julian Kershaw, Sir Anthony
Crouch, David Key, Robert
Currie, Mrs Edwina King, Roger (B'ham N'field)
Dickens, Geoffrey King, Rt Hon Tom
Dicks, Terry Knight, Greg (Derby N)
Dorrell, Stephen Knight, Dame Jill (Edgbaston)
Douglas-Hamilton, Lord J. Knowles, Michael
Dunn, Robert Knox, David
Dykes, Hugh Lamont, Rt Hon Norman
Edwards, Rt Hon N. (P'broke) Lang, Ian
Eggar, Tim Latham, Michael
Evennett, David Lawler, Geoffrey
Eyre, Sir Reginald Lawson, Rt Hon Nigel
Lennox-Boyd, Hon Mark Rifkind, Rt Hon Malcolm
Lester, Jim Roberts, Wyn (Conwy)
Lightbown, David Roe, Mrs Marion
Lilley, Peter Rossi, Sir Hugh
Lloyd, Sir Ian (Havant) Rowe, Andrew
Lyell, Nicholas Rumbold, Mrs Angela
McCrindle, Robert Sainsbury, Hon Timothy
MacGregor, Rt Hon John Sayeed, Jonathan
MacKay, John (Argyll & Bute) Scott, Nicholas
Maclean, David John Shaw, Giles (Pudsey)
McLoughlin, Patrick Shaw, Sir Michael (Scarb')
McQuarrie, Albert Shelton, William (Streatham)
Madel, David Shepherd, Colin (Hereford)
Major, John Shersby, Michael
Malins, Humfrey Sims, Roger
Malone, Gerald Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick)
Marland, Paul Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield)
Marlow, Antony Spencer, Derek
Mather, Carol Spicer, Michael (S Worcs)
Maude, Hon Francis Squire, Robin
Mawhinney, Dr Brian Stanbrook, Ivor
Maxwell-Hyslop, Robin Stern, Michael
Mayhew, Sir Patrick Stevens, Lewis (Nuneaton)
Mellor, David Stewart, Andrew (Sherwood)
Merchant, Piers Stewart, Ian (Hertf'dshire N)
Meyer, Sir Anthony Tapsell, Sir Peter
Mills, Iain (Meriden) Taylor, John (Solihull)
Mills, Sir Peter (West Devon) Taylor, Teddy (S'end E)
Mitchell, David (Hants NW) Tebbit, Rt Hon Norman
Moate, Roger Temple-Morris, Peter
Montgomery, Sir Fergus Thatcher, Rt Hon Mrs M.
Morris, M. (N'hampton S) Thompson, Donald (Calder V)
Morrison, Hon P. (Chester) Thompson, Patrick (N'ich N)
Moynihan, Hon C. Thornton, Malcolm
Neale, Gerrard Thurnham, Peter
Neubert, Michael Townsend, Cyril D. (B'heath)
Nicholls, Patrick Trippier, David
Onslow, Cranley Twinn, Dr Ian
Oppenheim, Phillip van Straubenzee, Sir W.
Ottaway, Richard Wakeham, Rt Hon John
Page, Sir John (Harrow W) Walker, Rt Hon P. (W'cester)
Patten, Christopher (Bath) Waller, Gary
Patten, J. (Oxf W & Abgdn) Ward, John
Pattie, Geoffrey Warren, Kenneth
Pawsey, James Wells, Sir John (Maidstone)
Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth Whitfield, John
Percival, Rt Hon Sir Ian Wiggin, Jerry
Portillo, Michael Winterton, Nicholas
Powell, William (Corby) Wolfson, Mark
Price, Sir David Wood, Timothy
Proctor, K. Harvey Woodcock, Michael
Raffan, Keith Young, Sir George (Acton)
Raison, Rt Hon Timothy Younger, Rt Hon George
Rathbone, Tim
Rhodes James, Robert Tellers for the Ayes:
Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon Mr. Tony Durant
Ridley, Rt Hon Nicholas Mr. Peter Lloyd.
Ridsdale, Sir Julian
Adams, Allen (Paisley N) Buchan, Norman
Alton, David Caborn, Richard
Anderson, Donald Callaghan, Jim (Heyw'd & M)
Archer, Rt Hon Peter Carlile, Alexander (Montg'y)
Ashdown, Paddy Carter-Jones, Lewis
Ashley, Rt Hon Jack Clark, Dr David (S Shields)
Ashton, Joe Clarke, Thomas
Atkinson, N. (Tottenham) Clay, Robert
Bagier, Gordon A. T. Clelland, David Gordon
Banks, Tony (Newham NW) Clwyd, Mrs Ann
Barron, Kevin Cocks, Rt Hon M. (Bristol S)
Beckett, Mrs Margaret Coleman, Donald
Beith, A. J. Conlan, Bernard
Bennett, A. (Dent'n & Red'sh) Cook, Frank (Stockton North)
Bermingham, Gerald Cook, Robin F. (Livingston)
Blair, Anthony Corbett, Robin
Boothroyd, Miss Betty Cox, Thomas (Tooting)
Boyes, Roland Craigen, J. M.
Brown, Ron (E'burgh, Leith) Crowther, Stan
Bruce, Malcolm Cunliffe, Lawrence
Cunningham, Dr John Maynard, Miss Joan
Davies, Ronald (Caerphilly) Meadowcroft, Michael
Dixon, Donald Michie, William
Dobson, Frank Millan, Rt Hon Bruce
Dormand, Jack Morris, Rt Hon A. (W'shawe)
Dubs, Alfred O'Brien, William
Eadie, Alex Orme, Rt Hon Stanley
Eastham, Ken Owen, Rt Hon Dr David
Evans, John (St. Helens N) Park, George
Fatchett, Derek Parry, Robert
Field, Frank (Birkenhead) Pavitt, Laurie
Fields, T. (L'pool Broad Gn) Pendry, Tom
Fisher, Mark Pike, Peter
Flannery, Martin Powell, Raymond (Ogmore)
Foot, Rt Hon Michael Radice, Giles
Foster, Derek Raynsford, Nick
Foulkes, George Redmond, Martin
Freud, Clement Roberts, Ernest (Hackney N)
Garrett, W. E. Rogers, Allan
Godman, Dr Norman Ross, Ernest (Dundee W)
Golding, Mrs Llin Ross, Stephen (Isle of Wight)
Gould, Bryan Rowlands, Ted
Gourlay, Harry Sheldon, Rt Hon R.
Hamilton, W. W. (Fife Central) Shields, Mrs Elizabeth
Hancock, Michael Shore, Rt Hon Peter
Hardy, Peter Short, Ms Clare (Ladywood)
Harrison, Rt Hon Walter Short, Mrs R.(W'hampt'n NE)
Hattersley, Rt Hon Roy Silkin, Rt Hon J.
Heffer, Eric S. Skinner, Dennis
Hogg, N. (C'nauld & Kilsyth) Smith, C.(Isl'ton S & F'bury)
Howell, Rt Hon D. (S'heath) Smith, Rt Hon J. (M'ds E)
Howells, Geraint Snape, Peter
Hughes, Roy (Newport East) Soley, Clive
Hughes, Simon (Southwark) Spearing, Nigel
Janner, Hon Greville Steel, Rt Hon David
John, Brynmor Stott, Roger
Johnston, Sir Russell Strang, Gavin
Jones, Barry (Alyn & Deeside) Straw, Jack
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald Thomas, Dr R. (Carmarthen)
Kennedy, Charles Thorne, Stan (Preston)
Kirkwood, Archy Tinn, James
Lambie, David Wainwright, R.
Lamond, James Wallace, James
Leadbitter, Ted Wardell, Gareth (Gower)
Leighton, Ronald Wareing, Robert
Lloyd, Tony (Stretford) Weetch, Ken
Lofthouse, Geoffrey Welsh, Michael
McCartney, Hugh Winnick, David
McKelvey, William Wrigglesworth, Ian
MacKenzie, Rt Hon Gregor Young, David (Bolton SE)
McTaggart, Robert
Madden, Max Tellers for the Noes:
Marshall, David (Shettleston) Mr. James Hamilton and
Martin, Michael Mr. Allen McKay.
Maxton, John

Question accordingly agreed to.

Clause 2 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

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