Application to High Court with a View to Discontinuing or Defer Ring Industrial Action Which En Dangers Lives, Imperils National Security, etc.

Part of Orders of the Day — Trade Union and Labour Relations Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 10th July 1974.

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Photo of Sir Raymond Gower Sir Raymond Gower , Barry 12:00 am, 10th July 1974

That reply is an extremely frivolous one and unworthy of the Minister. My hon. Friend put forward the clause for the purpose of providing a useful power which could be used occasionally. The Minister pulled the clause to pieces in a silly way, using phrases about Burke and Hare which I could hardly believe that I heard correctly.

The Minister has much experience in these matters and he knows that once a dispute starts, attitudes tend to harden and there may be circumstances in which a cooling off period would be useful.

The Minister's comment that this procedure may be used in other parts of the world but is not consistent with our methods was a "little England" remark. Does the Minister suggest that our industrial history is so perfect that we cannot look at the methods used elsewhere? Is he suggesting that everything we have done in this country has been so successful that we cannot benefit from the experience of others?

Finally, the Minister said that the clause had not been introduced by the Opposition Front Bench. But a clause can be put forward effectively from any part of the House. I thought that the argument was put extremely clearly and effectively from the Opposition back benches and I hope that it will receive overwhelming support.