§ Mr. Robert C. Brown
asked the Secretary of State for Employment, in the light of refusals by major companies to disclose any economic or financial information, if he will seek to introduce further legislation on the provision of factual information if necessary as an aid to good industrial relations and effective industrial reorganisation.
§ Mr. Waddington
I am unaware of the instances to which the hon. Member refers.
The responsibility rests with companies to determine what information to provide over and above that required by existing statutory provisions which, in addition to company law, also include sections 17 and 18 and sections 99 and 100 of the Employment Protection Act 1975 (disclosure of information to trade unions for collective bargaining purposes and consultation with trade unions on impending redundancies). The Government have stressed the importance for industrial relations of improving consultation and communication with employees but believe that this can best be done voluntarily with arrangements tailored to individual circumstances.
§ Mr. David Watkins
asked the Secretary of State for Employment what measures he is taking to increase staffing at employment offices in Consett and Stanley and in other areas now experiencing especially large increases in unemployment.
§ Mr. Peter Morrison
[pursuant to his reply, 19 January 1980]: I am informed by the MSC that eight additional staff were temporarily allocated to Consett jobcentre from other offices when the steelworks closed and that the permanent staff of the office has been increased by two. At Stanley two extra staff have been temporarily allocated to help deal with a major redundancy. The MSC hopes to continue a flexible policy of staff deployment to meet pressing needs in particular places within the reduced staff resources available to the public employment service.