Clause 89 - Being unfit for duty

Railways and Transport Safety Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 11:15 am on 4th March 2003.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Anne McIntosh Anne McIntosh Shadow Minister (Transport)

I welcome the provisions in this part of the Bill. I am delighted that we have made such progress that we have reached the provisions relating to aviation, alcohol and drugs. Clause 89 raises a number of serious concerns. If it is the Minister of State who will be responding, I hope that we will both have the benefit of some refreshment during the break—although not a hot toddy, as that would be inappropriate—so that we will feel better afterwards.

Will the Minister take the opportunity to define further the phrase ''unfit for duty''? There is concern in the industry, which I am sure will have been expressed to his Department, about the definition of that phrase and, more especially, about when testing takes place to prove that a person is unfit for duty. If the test takes place at the time of recruitment, pre-employment, that will not cause any difficulty—

It being twenty-five minutes past Eleven o'clock, The Chairman adjourned the Committee without Question put, pursuant to the Standing Order.

Adjourned till this day at half-past Two o'clock.