§ 11. Mr. Ron Brown
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many young people have successfully 173 completed a Manpower Services Commission training course in Scotland during the past 10 years; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Brown
Does the Minister agree that many trainees never finish their courses because of accidents? Has he ever heard of James McCormack, a young constituent, who died in 1985 as a result of injuries sustained in a company called MacGregors Quayside Mills, which is based in Leith? Does he appreciate that that family, as well as their son, suffered greatly? Has he ever understood that compensation was denied to that family? Does he appreciate that a court in Sheffield ruled only recently that the Manpower Services Commission is legally responsible for the accidents to and the death of MSC trainees? Will that English ruling prevail in Scotland? Will compensation —not that money is important—be paid to the McCormack family to make amends for what went wrong in the past? More important, will he ensure that such individuals—they are called trainees—are properly protected in the future? It is about time that the Minister spoke.
§ Mr. Lang
I am happy to agree with the hon. Gentleman on his last point. Obviously accidents at work are to be deplored and should be guarded against. I know that the greatest care is taken by the MSC, now the Training Agency, to try to ensure that accidents to young people on training courses are kept to an absolute minimum and, if possible, avoided at all costs.
With regard to completion of courses, the hon. Gentleman might like to know that in recent years more than 70 per cent. of those completing YTS have either gone into employnent or on to further training and education.
§ Mr. Bowis
Does my hon. Friend agree that it is important that all young people in Scotland have the opportunity to benefit from training schemes, especially disabled young people? Can my hon. Friend give the figures on the number of disabled young people who have completed such training courses? Can he also reassure me that steps are taken to ensure that access to training places is suitable for disabled people?
§ Mr. Lang
I regret that I cannot give my hon. Friend figures without notice, but he is right to emphasise the importance of training for disabled people. I am particularly encouraged by the high proportion of Scottish companies that are successful in the fit for work awards. Only last week I presented one to IBM in Greenock, a winner for the third year in succession.