HC Deb 05 June 1919 vol 116 cc2283-4W
Lieut.-Col. THORNE

asked the Minister of Labour whether, before the Coal Commission decides the issue of nationalisation, any evidence is to be taken on behalf of working-class and other domestic coal consumers; if so, what bodies are to be heard, whether, in view of his denial that any well-known public bodies or public men have been refused permission to tender evidence, he will state the grounds on which the National Food Vigilance Committee were so refused; whether he is aware that this body contains a considerable number of municipal councillors and representative men who have been many years in Labour and Socialist movements, and has greatly interested itself in all matters of working-class cost of living, including coal; and whether he is aware that, after intimating to the Commission that nationalisation without safeguards for consumers' interests would be useless, the Committee were asked to submit a précisof their evidence, and did so, in the form of a memorandum, which the Commission stated they had read with interest but nevertheless informed them that no-witness could be heard at the present?


I am informed that efforts have been made to find an organisation specifically representative of domestic coal consumers throughout the country who could be invited to send a witness before the Commission. These efforts have, however, not met with success, and accordingly the National Food Vigilance Committee have been asked to give-evidence.