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Bevan's Docks, Gravesend

Volume 415: debated on Thursday 1 November 1945

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asked the Minister of Labour whether he is aware that at Bevan's Docks, Gravesend, dockers have been suspended for three days, due to go-slow tactics; whether he will make an investigation of all the conditions there before the trouble comes to a head; and, in so far as the amount of work there is so little that men can be suspended, he will have them made redundant and their labour transferred to other docks, where work is plentiful and conditions better.

I am aware that as a disciplinary measure the employers suspended, and subsequently discharged on the ground of serious misconduct, a number of men who, they allege, were guilty of "go slow" tactics. Many of the men have already responded to an offer of re-employment by the company and are back at work, whilst others are no doubt considering the offer. I am not proposing to make an investigation as suggested in the second part of the Question, as the proper course is for the man to raise the matter with his trade union. As regards the third part, the men concerned are not dock workers; they are weekly paid employees of a waterside manufacturing company and are outside the scope of the dock labour scheme.