Suggested Amendments

Trade Union and Labour Relations (Amendment) Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 21st January 1976.

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Photo of Mr Selwyn Lloyd Mr Selwyn Lloyd , Wirral 12:00 am, 21st January 1976

My selection of amendments has been posted, so I shall not go through it now. I understand that it will be for the convenience of the House to

'. After section 1 of the principal Act there shall be inserted the following section:—
New Clause
"CHARTER ON FREEDOM OF THE PRESS
51A.—(1) If, before the end of the period of twelve months beginning with the passing of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Amendment) Act 1975, there is agreed among parties including employers of journalists (or employers' associations representing such employers), editors (or editors' organisations), and trade unions representing journalists, a charter containing practical guidance for employers, trade unions and editors and other journalists on matters relating to the freedom of the press, the Secretary of State shall lay before both Houses of Parliament a draft of that charter.
10(2) For the purposes of subsection (1) above, practical guidance on matters relating to the freedom of the press must include guidance on the avoidance of improper pressure to distort or suppress news, comment, or criticism, the application of union membership agreements to journalists (and in particular the right of editors to discharge their duties and to commission and to publish any article) and the question of access for contributors.
15
20(3) If no such charter has been agreed as mentioned above, or if a draft charter laid before Parliament (under subsection (1) above or this subsection) is not approved by resolution of each House of Parliament as mentioned in subsection (6) below, the Secretary of State shall after consultation with the Press Council and such of the parties referred to in subsection (1) above, such organisations representing workers, and such organisations representing employers, as he thinks fit, prepare in draft a charter, as follows:—
25(a) where, or so far as, there appears to the Secretary of State to be agreement among the parties referred to in subsection (1) above on any matter relating to the freedom of the press, he shall incorporate in the draft charter such practical guidance as he thinks appropriate to give effect to that agreement;
30(b) where, so far as there appears to the Secretary of State to be no such agreement on any of the particular matters referred to in subsection (2) above, he shall incorporate in the draft charter such practical guidance on that matter as he thinks fit, and the Secretary of State shall lay the draft charter before both Houses of Parliament.
35(4) A charter agreed as mentioned in subsection (1) above, or prepared by the Secretary of State in accordance with subsection (3) above, shall define its field of operation.
(5) A charter agreed as mentioned in subsection (1) above, or prepared by the Secretary of State in accordance with subsection (3) above, shall provide for the constitution of a body which shall have the functions of—
40(a) hearing any complaint by a person aggrieved by a failure on the part of any other person to observe any provision of the charter;
(b) issuing to the parties a declaration as to whether such a complaint is well-founded; and
(c) securing the publication of its decision.
45(6) If a draft laid under subsection (1) or (3) above is approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament, the Secretary of State shall issue the charter in the form of the draft.
50(7) A charter for the time being in force under this section may be revised from time to time by agreement between such parties as are referred to in subsection (1) above, and the Secretary of State shall lay a draft of the revised charter before both Houses of Parliament.
(8) If a draft laid under subsection (7) above is approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament, the Secretary of State shall issue the revised charter in the form of the draft.
55(9) On issuing a charter or revised charter under subsection (6) or (8) above the Secretary of State shall make by statutory instrument an order specifying the date on which the charter or revised charter is to come into effect.

take formally the moving of the substantive motion and to go straight to the discussion of the first group of amendments.

Motion made, and Question proposed,That, pursuant to the Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949, the House suggests to the Lords the following Amendments to the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Amendment) Bill:

60(10) A failure on the part of any person to observe any provision of a charter which is for the time being in force under this section shall not of itself render him liable to any proceedings, but in any proceedings—
(a) any such charter shall be admissible in evidence, and
(b) any provision of such a charter which appears to the court or tribunal to be relevant to any question arising in those proceedings shall be taken into account by the court or tribunal in determining that question."'