HC Deb 11 December 1981 vol 14 c490W
Mr. Alan Williams

asked the right hon. Member for Middlesbrough, as representing the House of Commons Commission, on what date the Commission brought to an end the process of consultation and negotiation between the consultants, management and trade unions on the subject of the grading review; and what progress has been made since then.

Mr. Arthur Bottomley

On 5 May 1981 the Commission agreed that consultations between the management consultants, the Administration Committee and the staff side on the staff grading review should be brought to an end. It asked the consultants to submit as soon as possible, on the basis of the information acquired by then, a comprehensive report on the grading of all non-industrial staff in the House. The final report was received on 15 June, and on 22 June the Commission decided that copies should be made available to the Board of Management and the trade union side of the Whitley Committee, and invited the Board of Management to submit its observations. These were received on 25 November. The grading review was before the Commission at its meeting on 7 December. The Commission decided against accepting the recommendations of the review; partly because of the present period of financial restraint, and partly because most of the recommendations appeared to it to favour those of the staff who were already comparatively high-graded, and to downgrade many of the lower-paid. It was, however, prepared to consider, with the assistance of the newly appointed staff inspector, any anomalies that there might be in the existing structure, on their merits.