Results 181–200 of 543 for speaker:Mr Thomas Torney

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker. Is it in order to ally the airports and other matters with a Bill about shops?

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: Mr. Torney rose—

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: The hon. Gentleman has been very magnanimous, and I thank him for giving way. The hon. Gentleman talks about buying a Bible, a Prayer Book or other items. Did he not listen to my speech? I made it clear that that was not the real issue. The real point is that the whole of the High Street would open on a Sunday. It is not a question whether one can buy a Bible, a pair of kippers or a Prayer Book.

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I do not for a moment doubt the honesty of the hon. Member for Hint, West (Sir A. Meyer). I believe that he has been mislead. It would be nice to believe that the outcome of the Bill would be just to abolish those difficulties which we heard enumerated recently by the hon. Member for Isle of Ely (Mr. Freud) when he sought to introduce a Ten-Minute Bill—being able to sell a kipper and not...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: Technically, that is absolutely right, but I wonder what the hon. Gentleman's constituents, or those of any other hon. Member, would say if they had an important meeting—perhaps on a problem concerning industry—which they wanted him to come to and his response was "No, I cannot come because there is a Private Member's Bill coming up and I want to be present for the debate." I am doing no...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I was not enumerating the work of a Minister, Mr. Deputy Speaker. I was merely pointing out that the Minister present this morning is a very busy Minister who deals with a problem which is invariably raised in my surgeries.

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I thank my hon. Friend for explaining the point rather more concisely than I was able to explain it. That is precisely what I was saying. I am sorry, Mr. Deputy Speaker, if I appeared to be out of order, but I was trying to explain the point to the hon. Member for Staffordshire, South-West (Mr. Cormack). I am willing to give way to him again if he wishes.

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: That is possibly true. Like my hon. Friend the Member for Edmonton (Mr. Graham), I was trying to make clear that there is also a duty, which usually falls on a Friday, for hon. Members to go into their constituencies, to meet constituents, to listen to their problems and perhaps to listen to industry. In many respects that enables us to keep contact with those who put us here, and I believe...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: This would be a convenient moment to declare an interest.—[HON. MEMBERS: "Surprise".] I am sponsored to this House by the union to which the hon. Gentleman referred, the correct title of which is the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers. Therefore, I have some responsibility to that union. Equally, I have a responsibility to my constituents. My constituents are well aware of my...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I do not accept that statement. Although the hon. Gentleman may feel that that is all the Bill intends to do, I am quite sure that it will go much further than the intentions which the hon. Gentleman mentioned when he introduced his Ten-Minute Bill a few months ago. I propose to deal later in my speech with the point that he raised. If I do not deal with it adequately, I shall give way to...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I thank my hon. Friend for that interesting point. It serves to emphasise the point that I was trying to make. If a trader wishes to remain in business but his competitors open seven days a week, he must open, too. We are beginning to see the problem involved. Is it fair to expect shops to open on Sundays just because someone has forgotten something or is too thoughtless or inconsiderate of...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I thank my hon. Friend for those helpful remarks. I shall continue to emphasise that the Bill can only worsen life for shop workers. They do not have an easy life. The Bill will also make the task of the mass of employers in the high street more difficlt than it is today. That brings me to one of the most important aspects of the argument. It is an absolute fallacy to suggest that more trade...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I am sorry, Mr. Deputy Speaker. I am sure that it will mean a much thinner spread of the available money that the public have to spend. A much thinner spread of money to be spent will mean that the shops, although opening an extra day, will undertake no extra trade. The point that I am trying to ram home is that, at the end of the day, no more trade will be done. It will mean that the...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: It might be very interesting, Mr. Deputy Speaker, if you made a speech on this subject. I apologise to the hon. Member for Staffordshire, South-West. There will be ample time for him to catch the eye of Chair. I look forward with considerable interest to hearing what the hon. Gentleman has to say when his time comes. However, there is a very important aspect of this matter with which I have...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I think that the latest count was close on half a million members. But I would not for a moment try to give the impression that that represented all of the shopworkers in the country. Unfortunately, USDAW struggles and works in an industry in which it is difficult to organise people into trade unions. It is only with the greater growth of the multiples that we have been able, as a union, to...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I think that that is, by and large, correct. I am not speaking for the employee of the very small, corner-shop business, although USDAW would have membership in some of the larger private businesses outside the multiples. We would organise them, but it is difficult, if not impossible, to organise the odd worker employed in a corner shop.

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: The third estimate would probably be correct. I return to my very important point that this is why this matter is important. It could well be argued "All right. Let all these shops open on Sundays. Let the opening hours get completely out of hand, and leave the union to negotiate and argue with the employers—and perhaps put a number of employers out of business, although that would not...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I think that it is related to the Bill, Mr. Deputy Speaker, inasmuch as what I was about to try to show was that legislation is necessary to protect shopworkers. Wages council orders are a form of legislation. They are prevalent mainly in the distributive trades. They are not as good as a trade union agreement, but they lay down a basis of negotiation, a base under which no one can fall. With...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: That is a valid point and gives support to my argument that to allow the Bill to go through would put at considerable risk the conditions of members of USDAW and hundreds of thousands who are not members of a trade union. Although I have no real urge to protect the interests of those who are not in the union, we must do so to protect the interests of union members. We cannot allow the...

Orders of the Day — Shops Bill (20 Feb 1981)

Mr Thomas Torney: I hope that hon. Members will bear with me a little longer. Unscrupulous employers have for years been a bad feature of retail distribution. Unfortunately, some still exist. I do not think they are to be found among the larger multiple firms. USDAW has excellent relationships with the large multiples. But unscrupulous employers exist and shop workers need the protection that legislation...


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