Miners' Compensation (Greene Award)

– in the House of Commons on 8th September 1942.

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Photo of Mr John Tinker Mr John Tinker , Leigh

I wish to raise a point in connection with the Greene award to miners in receipt of partial compensation. I think it was understood that the award should apply to everyone, but unfortunately men in receipt of compensation are not receiving the full amount. This is causing great discontent in the coalfields. When I heard the Prime Minister's speech to-day—

Photo of Mr Douglas Clifton Brown Mr Douglas Clifton Brown , Hexham

I must remind the hon. Member that he may not refer to the Prime Minister's speech to-day on the Adjournment.

Photo of Mr John Tinker Mr John Tinker , Leigh

All I was going to say was that the Prime Minister told us about the good feeling among the troops. What we want is good feeling at home among all sections of our workers. We in the mining industry are satisfied with the position, except as it applies to what we call partial compensation men. If this can be remedied, I believe we shall remove one of the obstacles to production. We have approached the employers, and they say that the award was not made definite on this point, but that if we can get a lead from the Government something may then be done about it. I contend that the good offices of the Deputy Prime Minister might be used with good effect in this direction, but like many other things a lead must first be given. I ask him to try to get the parties together with a view to rectifying this difficulty, and if that is done, I think a good deal of good will come of it. In Lancashire in particular the men are clamouring for drastic action, and drastic action means stoppages in the coalfields. No responsible miners' leader would sanction action of that kind. When men are insisting on their right to have something done, we ought to take every opportunity to bring the matter to the notice of the powers-that-be. Unless something is done, it may lead to men refusing to work. We never seem to do the right thing until we are forced to do it, and eventually, when there is unrest and a stoppage of work, Parliament intervenes. I am asking that the question should be examined and dealt with before matters have gone too far.

Question, "That this House do now adjourn," put, and agreed to.