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Orders of the Day — Sex Discrimination Bill [Lords]

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:35 pm on 22nd May 1986.

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Photo of Kenneth Clarke Kenneth Clarke Paymaster General (HM Treasury), Secretary of State for Employment 6:35 pm, 22nd May 1986

Of course we shall listen to the arguments. However, I ask the hon. Lady, who has expressed horror about the possible removal of clause 3, to reflect on the fact that all that has been achieved by clause 3 as it stands is that nothing can be done for at least a year and that another report should be published after further consultation with employers, trade unions and others. I am all in favour of consultation, but does the hon. Lady not accept that there have been six years of discussion and that a complete stalemate has obviously been reached? The only purpose, therefore, of clause 3 is to create futher delay, which I do not believe can be of enormous importance.