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Press Charter

Volume 931: debated on Tuesday 10 May 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Employment what consultations he is holding about the Press charter required by the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Amendment) Act 1976; when he expects these to be completed; and when he expects to lay the draft charter before the House.

I am at present considering the report submitted to me by Lord Pearce, who chaired the talks which have taken place over the last year within the industry about the Press charter. I shall shortly be meeting Lord Pearce to discuss his report, and in due course I and my Department will be entering into the extensive consultations with the Press Council and other interested parties required under the terms of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Amendment) Act 1976. Before we enter into such consultations, however, I would wish to have the chance to consider any recommendations that may be made by the Royal Commission on the Press, whose final report is expected over the next few months, on the issues involved. It is not possible for me at this stage to predict when I am likely to be able to lay a draft charter before Parliament.