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Commission's Employees (Trade Unions)

Volume 641: debated on Sunday 7 May 1961

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asked the Minister of Transport what general directions he has given to the British Transport Commission with regard to membership by their employees of appropriate trade unions.

None, Sir. I do not consider that this is a matter in which a general direction would be appropriate.

Has the attention of my right hon. Friend been directed to damages awarded to an employee of B.O.A.C. dismissed by the co-operation of the trade unions and the Board of B.O.A.C? May I have an assurance from my right hon. Friend that the British Transport Commission will not get itself involved in politics or involved in any controversy about trade unions? May I have an assurance that the Commission will be fair, strong and resolute in trying to look to the interests of the Commission as a whole and not in getting rid of employees on grounds for which it probably has no reason?

I realise that my hon. Friend has strong views on this subject, but membership of trade unions within a nationalised industry is a matter of management and not an appropriate one for the Minister to intervene in.