HC Deb 31 October 1966 vol 735 cc5-7W
65. Mr. R. W. Elliott

asked the Minister of Labour if he will introduce a compulsory medical examination for those people accepted for training or retraining in Government training centres.

Mrs. Shirley Williams

No. Compulsory medical examination would be contrary to normal industrial practice and hence a disincentive to recruitment. Medical examinations are readily available at Government Training Centres for the disabled and for any others who want them.

67. Mr. Buchanan

asked the Minister of Labour how many persons have been trained in Government training centres since 1st November, 1965; how many of the persons trained have been found employment in their new skills; and how many so trained have now been prevented from using their acquired skills by trade union barriers.

Mrs. Shirley Williams

During the twelve months ended 12th September, 1966, which is the latest year for which figures are available, 8,333 people completed training at Government Training Centres. Over 90 per cent. of them were placed in employment using the skills they had been taught. It is not possible to say how many trainees are prevented from using their acquired skills because of trade union opposition, but the numbers are small.

Mr. Dalyell

asked the Minister of Labour what crash programmes for retraining he has initiated in the past six months.

Mr. Gunter

As I told the House on 24th October, there is a limit to the pace at which we can expand facilities at Government Training Centres without risking damage to the quality of training and the existing expansion scheme is straining our resources. However, I am endeavouring to squeeze in additional classes wherever possible in the existing Centres, and am examining the possibility of adding a further programme of Centre building to the present one. I am also examining with the Industrial Training Boards ways in which they might help with the immediate adult retraining problem, and will make an announcement as soon as possible.

Mr. Hooley

asked the Minister of Labour how many places in Government training centres for industrial training, or retraining, are provided in Sheffield; how many applications for these places have been made during the past 12 months; and how many applications have been refused.

Mrs. Shirley Williams

There are 147 training places at the Sheffield Government Training Centre. During the twelve months ended 19th October, 1966 there were 532 applicants for training at Sheffield. Of these 202 were accepted and were allotted places, 114 subsequently withdrew their applications, 81 were found unsuitable at the selection stage, and 135 were awaiting allocation or were under consideration at the end of the period.

Mr. Gwynfor Evans

asked the Minister of Labour how many training centres there are in Wales; and how many training places are available in them now.

Mrs. Shirley Williams

There are two Government Training Centres in Wales, one in Cardiff and the other at Llanelli, with 306 and 189 training places respectively.

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