Sheffield United Tours Ltd.

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Labour – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 1st August 1966.

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Photo of Mr Frank Hooley Mr Frank Hooley , Sheffield, Heeley 12:00 am, 1st August 1966

asked the Minister of Labour what requests have been made for advice or help from his Department in the dispute between Sheffield United Tours Ltd. and the Clerical and Administrative Workers' Union; and what replies he has sent.

Photo of Mr Raymond Gunter Mr Raymond Gunter , Southwark

In February this year, the Clerical and Administrative Workers' Union, who were seeking recognition by this company, asked my Ministry to intervene. An official of the Ministry discussed this matter with the general manager and was subsequently informed that the company was not prepared to recognise the union. The union was so informed.

Photo of Mr Frank Hooley Mr Frank Hooley , Sheffield, Heeley

May I first welcome back my right hon. Friend to the Government Dispatch Box and express the hope that he is now fully recovered? Is he aware that his reply will be a little disappointing, and may I hope that some further assistance will be given to gaining recognition in this dispute?

Photo of Mr Raymond Gunter Mr Raymond Gunter , Southwark

I should like to thank my hon. Friend for his kind words—my joy is not entirely unconfined. I have the greatest sympathy with what he has said and with what the Clerical and Administrative Workers' Union wants, but I have to emphasise here, as we have had to emphasise before, that in the last resort I have no powers at all to compel recognition.

Photo of Miss Mervyn Pike Miss Mervyn Pike , Melton

Does the right hon. Gentleman realise how glad we on this side are to see him back, because we realise that some sanity has returned to the Front Bench opposite?

Photo of David Winnick David Winnick , Croydon South

Is my right hon. Friend aware that a number of unions, certainly the clerical staff unions affiliated to the T.U.C., have great difficulty in getting recognition from employers, and although we appreciate that he does not have special powers, would it be possible for him to consult employers generally over recognition of staff unions?

Photo of Mr Raymond Gunter Mr Raymond Gunter , Southwark

I have already made known my views on the desirability of employers having another look at some of their attitudes to the white collar workers. As my hon. Friend will know, a Royal Commission is now giving special attention to this question of recognition.