HC Deb 26 June 1968 vol 767 cc94-5W
65. Mr. Parker

asked the Secretary of State for Employment and Productivity, what action she is taking to secure a settlement in the dispute at Fords.

Mrs. Castle

Following discussions with the parties I have appointed a court of inquiry under the chairmanship of Sir Jack Scamp to investigate and report on this dispute. The court is holding an initial meeting with the parties tomorrow morning. When I met representatives of the unions concerned on 22nd June, I made it clear to them that the court is fully empowered to inquire into—and make recommendations on— any matter relevant to the dispute and to call for witnesses and the production of all relevant documents. In view of this assurance, and because of the effects of the dispute, on exports and the employment of thousands of other workers, I urged them to recommend an immediate resumption of work. I regret that they have not so far done so. I very much hope they will do so in the very near future.