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Boac And Bea Employees (Union Membership)

Volume 641: debated on Friday 5 May 1961

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asked the Minister of Aviation what general directions he has given to the British Overseas Airways Corporation and the British European Airways Corporation with regard to membership by their employees of appropriate trade unions.

None, Sir.

In view of the fact that damages were rewarded to an employee of B.O.A.C. who was recently sacked with the co-operation of the trade unions and the Board of B.O.A.C., could I ask for an assurance that in future there will be at B.O.A.C. a strong Board which will not allow itself to be involved in political controversies? Is my hon. Friend aware that I do not think the Board of B.O.A.C. had any guts?

These are, of course, matters for the day-to-day management of the Board.

I am aware of the circumstances of the case to which my hon. Friend refers, but that would not justify my right hon. Friend in issuing any general directions.

Is my hon. Friend not interested in freedoms? Is it not a fact that the Conservative Party is attached to individual and collective freedoms?

I shall be very happy to discuss freedoms with my hon. Friend at any time she likes with particular reference to this case.

Would the hon. Gentleman not agree that a very important freedom is freedom of association in trade unions, which is involved in this?