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Coalface Workers

Volume 466: debated on Monday 27 June 1949

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24.

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power what progress has been made so far this year in increasing the number of coalface workers; and what special steps are being taken to reach the target of 310,000 by the end of 1949 as set out in the Economic Survey.

For the first quarter of this year the number of coalface workers on the colliery books increased at a steady and fairly satisfactory rate. In the next two months there was a decline, the causes of which are being examined but which may be of a temporary nature only. I am not at present able to say whether as a result of this examination the National Coal Board will consider that any further special measures are called for.

Has anything been done within the industry to transfer experienced miners to the coalface and to bring in new men to do their jobs?

Did the Parliamentary Secretary see the statement by one of the Coal Board officials in Scotland, that they will have to get rid of 60,000 of their present miners? Does the Minister approve of that statement?

is the Parliamentary Secretary satisfied with the progress that is being made in getting foreign workers into the pits, or is their entry into the pits resisted in a number of districts?

A substantial number are already in the pits, but the scheme has now been closed for the mining industry.