Pulmonary Disease, South Wales Coalfield.

Oral Answers to Questions — Coal Industry. – in the House of Commons on 2nd June 1942.

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Photo of Mr James Griffiths Mr James Griffiths , Llanelly

asked the Lord President of the Council what action the Government propose to take following upon the report of the Medical Research Council upon chronic pulmonary disease in the South Wales coalfield?

Photo of Mr Osbert Peake Mr Osbert Peake , Leeds North

I have been asked to reply. The recommendations in the report, which affect the Mines Department, as well as the Home Office, are under active consideration, in consultation with my hon. Friend the Secretary for Mines. It is not yet possible to make any statement as to the action to be taken, but the urgency of the matter is fully appreciated and it will be dealt with with the least possible delay.

Photo of Mr James Griffiths Mr James Griffiths , Llanelly

Would the hon. Gentleman bear in mind that this investigation took well over four years and that it is really desirable that urgent action should be taken? Secondly, in framing any new Order, would the Department bear in mind the desirability of ante-dating its operation; otherwise large numbers of men who would be qualified under the report will be disqualified?

Photo of Mr Osbert Peake Mr Osbert Peake , Leeds North

With regard to the second point, we will certainly take that into consideration. As to the hon. Member's first point, although this inquiry has taken a long time, the report was only published on 16th May, and there have been other matters affecting the coal industry which have been the concern of the Mines Department since that date.