§ Notwithstanding the provisions of section 3(1) of the National Insurance Act 1966, as amended by section 1(1) of the National Insurance, &c. Act 1969, so far as the said section 3(1) operates for the purpose of any provision of the National Insurance Act 1965 relating to unemployment benefit or to a day or period of interruption of employment, no date shall be appointed for the coming into force of the said section 3(1) and any date already appointed shall cease to have effect.—[Mr. O'Malley.]
§ Brought up, and read the First time.
§ 4.15 p.m.
§ Mr. Brian O'Malley (Rotherham)
I beg to move, That the Clause be read a Second time.
The House has been in a humorous and good-tempered mood in the last quarter of an hour. We shall soon change all that.
It is not for me to inquire into the social arrangements entered in the diary of the Leader of the House. No doubt they are a sight more attractive than the proposals in this Bill. The Government seem to be hell-bent on emptying the pockets of the average working family. Even worse, they are concentrating their attack on the families of men who are sick and unemployed.
In Committee on 17th June the Secretary of State explained the strategy and the broad policy thinking behind the Bill. If I may loosely paraphrase what the right hon. Gentleman said in defence of the Bill, it was to the effect that he had to rob the sick to help the poor. Notwithstanding that, what the right hon. Gentleman is doing in the Bill and in the Statutory Instrument that we are trying to overturn by this Clause is to take from both the sick and the poor in order to help the wealthier people in the community who the Tories believe support them at General Elections with their votes and their money.
§ The Secretary of State for Social Services (Sir Keith Joseph)
The hon. Gentleman is quite wrong. I challenge his paraphrase of what I said.
§ Mr. O'Malley
That surprises me, since I believe that any impartial observer reading what the right hon. Gentleman said on 17th June would come to the conclusion that, as usual, I was being completely fair to the right hon. Gentleman and the points of view expressed by his hon. Friends.
On 24th June last a Statutory Instrument was laid before the House the effect of which was to deprive a man or woman on short-time working of unemployment benefit from 1st January, 1972. Speaking for the Opposition, I made it clear that we were not opposed to this change of practice provided that certain conditions were satisfied. It has now become clear that these conditions are not satisfied and will not be. It is for that reason that we put forward this Clause.
Section 20 of the National Insurance Act, 1965, sets out the broad definition of days which can be counted for payment of unemployment benefit. Paragraph (c) of the first subsection explains:the expression 'day of interruption of employment' means a day which is a day of unemployment or of incapacity for workParagraph (d) says:Any two days of interruption of employment, whether consecutive or not, within a period of six consecutive days shall be treated as a period of interruption of employment, and any two such periods not separated by a period of more than thirteen weeks shall be treated as one period of interruption of employment".As a result of that legislation, unemployment benefit has been available, after a period of three waiting days, to short-time workers who satisfy the conditions laid down in that Section.
The National Insurance Act, 1966, provided that as from three years from the passing of the Act—from March, 1969–where an employed contributor's employment has not been terminated but …suspended by the employer, a day shall not be treated …as a day of unemployment unless it is the seventh or a later day in a continuous period of … suspension",excluding Sundays, holidays, or other prescribed days. The position generally became that a short-time worker after three waiting days could no longer get unemployment benefit in most circum- 1542 stances. Where he was working a short working week it was merely a matter not of waiting six instead of three days before obtaining unemployment benefit, but of unemployment benefit no longer being available. These proposals were put forward by the Labour Government and postponed in the National Insurance Act, 1969, which replaced the provision for this section to come in three years after the date of the passing of the Bill by an appointed day.
It is necessary to explain briefly why the Labour Government acted as they did in 1969. Margaret Herbison, the then Minister of Pensions and National Insurance, made it clear in the House on 16th February, 1966, at col. 1417, that the then Government were moving these proposals only under the view that payment for short-time working of this kind was properly the responsibility of the employer.
The reason for providing for three years and an appointed day in 1969 was to give time to secure schemes whereby employers would provide benefits for people on short-time working. No such agreements have been reached.
We had hoped from everything that the present Government said when in Opposition that, if they were to move a Statutory Instrument of the kind that they did move, they would take positive action to secure that responsibility for payments of this kind should be clearly laid upon the employer. It became clear, however, from the debate in Committee on 17th June that, although the Secretary of State declared himself "passionately" interested in fringe benefits, he was not prepared to accept an Amendment which had the effect of putting responsibility for alternative schemes on the employer. That is the first reason for coming back to this aspect of the National Insurance and Social Security system. It was on 17th June, after the passing of the Statutory Instrument on 24th May, that we realised there was no prospect of persuading the Government to do anything. They had ratted on what they said they would do when in Opposition; namely, to provide an alternative scheme, or schemes, whereby the responsibility rested with the employer rather than with the State.
Secondly, we have moved the new Clause because the T.U.C. objects 1543 strongly. Certainly the T.U.C. was informed, but it was not consulted in any meaningful use of the word "consulted". The Government seem to have the idea that consultation equals telling somebody that they will do something after they have decided to do it, rather than asking the opinion of outside bodies first. We had an example of that only last week with the announcement by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry about the steel industry. Therefore, the T.U.C. and the trade unions involved object strongly. Apparently the C.B.I. does not care.
Hon. Members on both sides of the House have received a printed pamphlet or broadsheet from a number of trade unions in the North of England which take the understandable view that the proposal to withdraw unemployment benefit for workers on short time without the provision of decent alternative schemes is a matter which must be opposed.
Another important reason for bringing forward the new Clause is that, according to the latest figures which I have been able to obtain of 17th April, 1971, short-time working in manufacturing industry alone had reached the alarming level of 89,900. There are further limitations on those figures, because they are collected only from establishments which employ 11 or more workers.
A typical headline appeared in the Sheffield Star of Wednesday, 7th July, telling a story which is being told in local and regional newspapers all over the country as a result of the Government's policies. The newspaper stated:Mexborough area faces jobs crisis. The G.E.C. plant at Swinton, the Mexborough area's biggest factory, today banned overtime and the management warned their 3,000 workers of possible short-time working…. Councillor Bob Haigh, chairman of the local employment committee, today warned that the situation had reached such serious proportions that the whole economy of the Mexborough area was in danger of collapsing.It is against that kind of background that we bring forward the new Clause.
It is now clear that there is no possibility of alternatives in the short term between July, 1971, and January, 1972, when the Government propose to stop 1544 unemployment benefit for men on short-time working. The Government refuse to attempt to do it by legislation. They certainly will not get comprehensive cover without legislation.
A number of trade unionists take the view that where they have achieved guaranteed working weeks in some industries, the value of such agreements is very much reduced by the fact that some employers sack people whom they certainly would not otherwise have sacked. It is an open question whether the Government's proposals to withdraw unemployment benefit for short-time workers would save any or very much money. The coming into operation of these proposals on 1st January, 1972, could result in many people losing jobs which otherwise they would not have lost.
We suggest that the Statutory Instrument which went through this House on 24th May should be annulled and that the proposals to withdraw unemployment benefit for men on short-time working who satisfy the conditions of the National Insurance Act, 1965, should be annulled because there is not the cover that there ought to be and life is difficult for many people at a time of high unemployment, raging inflation and a high degree of short-time working. If we allow this situation and these proposals to come into operation on 1st January, 1972, many ordinary working men and women will be affected. The Government are refusing to carry out the concomitant policies which are essential for any such proposals.
§ 4.30 p.m.
§ Mr. Eric S. Heffer (Liverpool, Walton)
The House should first take note of the fact that on a most important issue there are only two hon. Members opposite, including the Minister. The benches on this side of the House have a greater much greater proportion of Members. That clearly indicates, as was shown equally in Committee, the difference in attitude to social security and benefits for working people. In Committee hon. Gentlemen on the Government benches were totally indifferent to all the arguments that were put forward. They made it clear that they were there for only one purpose, and that was to vote down the Amendments put forward by my hon. Friends.
§ Sir K. Joseph
The hon. Gentleman is making a tactical error in drawing attention to numbers. He will remember that during the Second Reading of the National Insurance Bill his benches were empty, except for a representative of the Front Bench.
§ Mr. Heffer
That may well have been true for a certain stage, and those who were not in the House were severely criticised. I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will equally criticise all those of his hon. Friends who are absent from this important debate.
I support what has been said by my hon. Friend the Member for Rotherham (Mr. O'Malley), because late at night on 24th May an Order went through the House which gave the date of commencement of Section 3(1) of the National Insurance Act, 1966, as 1st January, 1972, and what we are trying to do by the Clause is to reverse that decision and say that it will not come into effect on that date.
During the 1939–45 War quite often submarines got through and caused a great deal of damage. I regard the Order as being similar to one of those submarines. If it goes through, it will cause a great deal of damage and harm to ordinary working people, particularly those who have short-time working as a normal part of their working process. There is still time to turn that submarine back, and it can be done by the Clause being accepted.
The Order will affect thousands of workers. The number of workers who have short-time working as part of their normal industrial experience fluctuates all the time. According to figures issued by the Department of Employment, in mid-December, 1970, the number on short time was 63,000. In mid-January, 1971–this is very interesting—the figure went down to 39,000, but today we have heard from my hon. Friend that it is up to 89,000. What must be remembered is that those figures are incomplete, because they do not include the shipbuilding and ship-repairing industries, nor do they includes firms with fewer than 11 employees.
The industries most affected by short-time working are the furniture, clothing, textile—particularly in my part of the world, the North-West—motor car and 1546 ship-repairing industries. I have personal experience of working short time on many occasions in the ship-repairing industry, and the problem still has not been solved. It is true, too, that from time to time certain sections of the engineering industry are affected by short-time working.
§ Mr. Heffer
I do not have the details relating to boot and shoe operatives, but I understand that that is true. I am giving the main industries affected by short-time working.
As my hon. Friend the Member for Rotherham said, the 1966 Act, which was brought in by the Labour Government, excluded the payment of wage-related benefits to those who were on short-time working, but the date for the commencement of the non-application of flat-rate benefit was held up for three years. After discussions with the T.U.C. and other interested bodies it was agreed that the operative date should be postponed, and the House may be interested to know that the T.U.C. is deeply concerned and extremely angry that this proposal is going through.
The Labour Government thought that a period of three years would enable them to get from employers, in consultation with the trade unions, an agreement that there would be full payment, or a guaranteed payment, to workers while they were on short-time working. We know that about 10 million workers are covered by such guaranteed arrangements, but that is fewer than half the working population. It is interesting to note that in the motor car industry arrangements are being made to cover some of the higher-paid sections of workers, but the lower-paid sections have not yet been protected, and it is the lower-paid workers who will be hit hardest by the Order.
It is very important that low-paid workers should, as part of their normal working life, be able to receive not only their two or three days' employment, but also their two days' unemployment benefit. It is no crime of theirs if they find themselves on short time. They do not ask to be out of work for two or three days a week every two or three weeks. They do not say that they are delighted 1547 with the situation. They would much prefer to be in full-time employment but, because of the nature of their jobs, that cannot be so. They will find themselves in a situation in which, through no fault of their own, their benefits are cut off. It is an absolute scadal.
I understand that the Government will save £3 million. I give them a bit of advice. They should take £3 million off the surtax payers. They should take it off some of their friends, who would be able to make up for it, and pay workers the benefits which, up to now, they have received as of right.
The T.U.C.'s view on the matter is very clear. In its 1966 report it said:Following this announcement"—that was the announcement by my Government—the General Council met both the Minister of National Insurance and the Prime Minister and strongly opposed the proposal. They argued that if unemployment benefit were abolished for short periods of suspension and it was left to voluntary negotiations, many workers suspended through no fault of their own would receive neither benefits nor wages. Such a change was contrary to the fundamental principles of the unemployment scheme and would be completely unacceptable.That was the T.U.C.'s view in 1966, and that is its view in 1971. It has not altered its view. It told my Government that it was not happy about what was being done, and there is this difference between the situation then and what we face now. My Government, after consultation, and having recognised that employers were not prepared to enter into agreements in every sector of industry to provide a guaranteed week, said that they would put down a date but would leave it to the Secretary of State to decide when the provision should come into force.
But what does the right hon. Gentleman do? He does not find out—if he has done, then his action is all the more to his discredit—whether such agreement can be reached throughout every sector. He does not say, "We now have agreement through every sector for a guaranteed week and I can therefore apply this provision." One of the first things he did on taking office was to apply this recommendation under the Act, and I regard it as a scandal. I hope that the House will repudiate him by accepting 1548 the new Clause. Indeed, I hope that the Government will accept it. If they do, we can stop this discussion at once. But I am afraid that they are unlikely to accept it in view of the flinty-hearted attitude they have so far adopted on other aspects of the Bill. In the interests of common decency and of all the workers involved, the Government should accept the new Clause.
§ Mr. Stanley Orme (Salford, West)
New Clause 1 takes us into the world of industrial relations and activity about which many people do not appear to have great knowledge. It deals with the question of unemployment pay and the problems faced by workers who, through no fault of their own, are laid off temporarily by their employer. In a period of full employment, such as that which we had in 1966, this matter may not seem so important because people might then say, "This is an old-fashioned system. We should tidy it up." All sorts of proposals are made to change the system in times of full employment. We are, indeed, often told in times of full employment that the problems that many of us worry about, such as uncertainty, short-time working and unemployment, have vanished and that we are moving into a different industrial society. But those of us who have spent our lives in industry know that conditions tend to ebb and flow. Yet the Government are introducing this provision to save £3 million at a time of rising unemployment and of short-time working. They are not saving this money off people who can afford it. They are not taking it away from people who are well paid or to whom it does not really matter. They are saving it off people faced with unemployment and short-time working.
I remember a situation like this in industry in the 1950s—again under a Tory Government—when there was severe unemployment in the North-West and in other parts of the country. The factory where I worked had to go on short-time working. The trade unions tried to maintain work for all the workers involved. The employer himself did not want to lose his valuable work force, particularly his skilled workers. We therefore went on to three days working plus the two days which we could draw in benefit. We were thus able to get a weekly wage. This was not equivalent to the average 1549 weekly wage, because piece-work earnings were down and there was no overtime. Our earnings were greatly reduced. But at least we were not unemployed. At least we were able to take home a living wage.
That is the sort of situation which many people in industry face. The motor car industry often faces it. Certainly the cotton workers do—and no doubt my hon. Friend the Member for Accrington (Mr. Arthur Davidson) will want to say something in more detail about the cotton trade and the problems it faces. Many workers undergo a situation of temporary reductions in the working week, sometimes lasting for months or even years. They try to maintain their employment by reduced hours. In these circumstances, they face the need to claim benefit.
One of the points we have tried to press home on the Government is that we believe that the benefits are a right for workers who fall on difficult times. They are not a charity. They are a benefit which the workers themselves have contributed to. There are, of course, agreements in parts of industry on a guaranteed week. The engineering industry has a guaranteed week, but it is only 30 hours so it does not cover the full working week. The motor car industry also has a 30-hour guaranteed week. Therefore, the State benefits supplement the low pay which workers get in these circumstances and it does allow the trade unions and the employers to maintain employment.
The circular sent out by the Northern Counties Textile Trades Federation and other organisations points out that the Government's proposal will bring poverty and great problems to workers in some towns in North-East Lancashire. Unhappily, it will spread even beyond the towns of North-East Lancashire and Merseyside. It is now coming to the area I represent. Unemployment in the greater Manchester area in the last 10 months has doubled from 2.4 per cent. to just under 5 per cent. In the small factories in my constituency and in the greater Manchester area generally, there is now a situation of redundancy, short-time working and reduction of overtime. The Order went through the House, as Vic Feather would say, on its stockinged 1550 feet. My hon. Friends are trying to redress the balance with new Clause 1.
It would, indeed, be a revelation if new Clause 1 were accepted by the Government. Practically every Clause in the Bill takes something away from the benefits of working people and new Clause 1 would redress the balance. At the moment, the system allows workers to maintain at least reduced employment and both employers and trade unions struggle to keep it going. But the Government's proposal means that more workers may be sacked. That means they will need unemployment benefit for the whole week, whereas at present the system tends to encourage firms to keep the men on and try to get through the bad time in the hope that things will improve. So the Minister will be adding to the unemployment which exists at the moment and will thereby increase the Government's expenditure. Over all, he will not save money by this proposal because more Government expenditure will be needed in unemployment benefit. In fact, he is creating more hardship. We have a case that the Minister has to answer. This is a central issue affecting thousands of industrial workers, and we urge the Government to accept the Clause.
§ Mr. Dan Jones
I, too, appeal to the Minister to look at the Clause with some sympathy. I want to speak about two industries which will be vitally affected if the Clause is not accepted—the textile and the boot and shoe industries, both of which undergo a great deal of short-time working.
The Secretary of State should have some respect for the consistent efforts of trade union officials to negotiate a guaranteed working week. If it had been possible to do so, the position now would not be nearly so acute. For about 10 years the workers in these industries have appealed in vain for a guaranteed working week. From time to time, the Secretary of State has shown compassion.
§ Mr. Russell Kerr (Feltham): When?
§ Mr. Jones
For disabled people recently, and it is idle to pretend otherwise. I hope that he will regard these workers as suffering from a form of disability while not been physically disabled. Time after time they have petitioned 1551 their union leaders to negotiate a guaranteed working week in line with the facility which millions enjoy, but in vain.
I know from personal experience that over a period of years people in the textile and boot and shoe industries have been told that much of what is wrong with the industries is the fact that we have to import from developing countries. There is more than a grain of truth in that, although I have yet to understand how Portugal could be described as a developing country; I suppose that it is embraced by the E.F.T.A. agreement.
At the same time, the point must be clearly made that we are asking our friends in those industries to adopt a broad and considerate attitude about those imports and yet we are to add an imposition upon them when they experience lean times. It is no exaggeration to say that they will have to go through a period on a line as near poverty as makes little difference. In these industries now—and I am pleased to see that the Secretary of State is paying rapt attention—without a full working week and with the rising cost of living, it is already hard to make do.
In difficult periods, these people will have to work a part of a week without unemployment benefit to subsidise them, and their condition will be such that my words, to me at any rate and I hope to the Secretary of State, will contain a disturbing grain of truth—as near the poverty line as matters very little. It may well be that, instead of hanging on to his labour force, as he normally would, an employer will say that they will have to be dismissed, so that, as my hon. Friend the Member for Salford, West (Mr. Orme) said, the unemployment figures will rise.
It seems hard from a Minister who has shown a measure of compassion for disabled people, and in passing I congratulate him on that. The difference in attitude is so great that I completely fail to understand it. However, I may be wrong and at the end of this short debate the right hon. Gentleman may say that he will accept the new Clause. I hope so.
§ Mr. Arthur Davidson (Accrington)
It is not surprising that the greatest opposi- 1552 tion to the implementation of the six-day suspension rule has come from the textile unions, particularly the textile unions of Lancashire, because there is no doubt that the workers concerned will be hard hit if the Government go through with this proposal. Anyone who lives or works in Lancashire has only to open any local paper to read the same dismal, depressing story—more and more redundancies, more and more short-time working, more and more closures.
In the textile industry, and particularly in the footwear industry, consisting of many small firms trying to make ends meet, short-time working has become not just a regrettable rarity, but the natural way of life. It is monstrous that people who work in an industry for low wages—and no one will claim that those working in the Lancashire textile industry are exactly over-paid; they never have been and certainly are not now—and who are now working a short-time week, week in and week out, through no fault of their own, should be faced with this proposal. It is almost unbelievable that, without proper consultation and without assuring themselves that alternative arrangements were made by employers to compensate workers for any loss of earnings when working a short-time week, the Government should be willy-nilly pressing on with the implementation of the six-day suspension rule. That is what the Opposition object to.
It is no good the Secretary of State saying, as he may, that authority was given by the 1966 Act to enable a Secretary of State in a subsequent year to operate the six-day suspension rule by Statutory Instrument.
§ Mr. O'Malley
My hon. Friend will be aware that Margaret Herbison, then Minister of Pensions, made it absolutely clear at the time that if such proposals were to be implemented, they should be implemented only if the employer took over fully the obligations previously undertaken by the National Insurance Fund.
§ Mr. Davidson
That was the point I was about to make and I am glad that my hon. Friend, the shadow Minister, has made it. It was not a Labour Government which introduced this provision, but the present Government, and they cannot lean back on the Labour Government 1553 for some sort of protection from the criticism which they are now rightly getting.
My hon. Friend said that the total saving, and I presume this is the Government figure, is something like £3 million. That is a paltry sum. That we should bandy about a figure like that as a justification for inflicting hardship on people who are grossly underpaid and who work very hard is disgraceful. This is at a time when the Government are proudly announcing some sort of massive saving on S.E.T. This saving has certainly not benefited any of my constituents. I do not know who has benefited, but it is certainly not the people in North-East Lancashire.
I feel, therefore, that the Government have a case to answer and that they must justify the introduction of the six-day suspension rule at this time. There is rising unemployment, the worst unemployment figures ever in North-East Lancashire. It is monstrous. The Minister, it is true, has shown himself on many occasions to be a warm and humane person. I do not mean that in a patronising sense, but I find it incredible that he should press ahead with this proposal.
§ The Clause does not try to do something that is administratively impossible. All that it seeks to do is to prevent the operation of the six-day suspension rule. I should have thought that our case had been overwhelmingly made out and I hope that the Minister will find himself able to accept this very well-drafted Clause.
§ Mr. Alex Eadie (Midlothian)
If the right hon. Gentleman seeks to argue the proposition on the basis that there will be a saving of £3 million he will be on very marshy ground indeed. This is certainly the wrong time to make this proposal. There has been discussion about unemployment in Lancashire and other areas in England. I represent a part of the country where unemployment is something with which we have had to live for some considerable time. If I were to stop being parochial for a moment I could point out to the right hon. Gentleman that it is almost as certain as night follows day that this winter there will be 1 million unemployed. 1554 In Scotland at present there are over 120,000 unemployed. That is an absolute disgrace. It may be that if the right hon. Gentleman is not prepared to listen to the arguments advanced by my hon. Friends we will not only have to deal with unemployment but also underemployment.
What are the arguments in favour of this proposition? Is it because the Government want to try to do something to the trade union movement? Is it being pressed here as an argument against the whole proposition of work sharing? Is it said that it is better and cleaner that men and women should be made unemployed because it will be administratively expedient?
§ Mr. Heffer
I am sorry to stop my hon. Friend in full flight. He is always very good in full flight. Is he aware that in the so-called Code of Industrial Practice which has just been issued by the Government it is suggested that short-time working is a good thing? One half does not know what the other half is doing.
§ Mr. Eadie
My hon. Friend tempts me. The whole of the country looks on the Industrial Relations Bill as a joke. It was thought when it was introduced by the Secretary of State for Employment that there would be a great deal of political mileage in it. Nobody speaks about political mileage now. It has sunk without trace. The Government will be trying to press it through before we go into recess, not because it will have any impact—
§ Mr. Deputy Speaker (Sir Robert Grant-Ferris)
Order. No doubt we will spend a lot of time in pressing it through before long, but we must not try now.
§ Mr. Eadie
This is analagous to my proposition. I was talking about work sharing. The Government are discouraging the trade union movement from taking part in work-sharing schemes. The unions want to stop people being unemployed, because unemployment means a loss of dignity. It is relevant to mention the Industrial Relations Bill here, because that is an attempt to discipline the trade union movement.
The Government have made a fateful error. There is no political mileage in that. They will try to drive it through 1555 to save their faces. The right hon. Gentleman seems to be persisting in making people unemployed. He must answer that charge. Does he think it more dignified for a person to be underemployed rather than unemployed? He talks of a saving of £3 million, but he would inflict great financial hardship on people. My hon. Friends and I are entitled to expose the attitude of this Government by voting against them.
§ Sir K. Joseph
I am sure that hon. Gentlemen who have disposed of a paltry £3 million would not be less vociferous if it were a larger saving. They are surely not asking for a larger sum of money to be saved in this way if they feel so strongly about the damage that the £3 million savings might inflict.
§ Mr. Dennis Skinner (Bolsover)
Of course we would not change our minds if the amount of money was a great deal more because it would represent more people out of work and more people on short time. At present there are 800,000 people out of work, with 89,000 on short-time working.
§ Sir K. Joseph
Precisely. Despite the strong feelings that hon. Members have sincerely shown, it is a fact that six weeks ago when the commencement Order was introduced by affirmative Resolution the Opposition did not vote.
§ Sir K. Joseph
It needs to be repeated. The hon. Member for Rotherham (Mr. O'Malley) said that if at a later stage it was plain that the Government were not introducing parallel changes, by which he meant an obligation on industry to provide a guaranteed week, the Opposition might return to the subject and would want to vote. On that occasion there was no indication from the Government benches that any obligation would be placed on industry but the Opposition decided not to vote. I make no more than that of it. It is not an argument of substance. It should, however, be borne in mind.
§ Mr. Dan Jones
I take it that what the Minister is saying is that he wants us to behave similarly on this occasion. That, in my opinion, would be trying to make two wrongs equal one right.
§ Sir K. Joseph
I am not suggesting that. I am suggesting that, in view of the strong feeling shown today, it was very odd that the Opposition did not take the opportunity—
§ Sir K. Joseph
The submarine got through the Opposition's defences.
We are dealing with an unknown number of people who are affected by the proposed change. As hon. Members for Lancashire constituencies are saying, there is a relatively small, although absolutely important, number of people who fairly regularly receive unemployment benefit for short-term suspensions and a much larger number of people, often in reasonably well-paid work, who receive it infrequently. Part of the engineering in-industry is not yet covered by guaranteed weeks. Part of other industries in which people are not notably ill paid are not covered by guaranteed weeks.
§ Sir K. Joseph
We should not deceive ourselves by thinking that the 10 million people who are covered by guaranteed weeks are under half, as the hon. Member for Liverpool, Walton (Mr. Heffer) said, of the working population. In fact, nearly all the people affected by suspension are men. Most of the 10 million covered by the guaranteed week are men. Therefore, substantially more than half the men in manufacturing industry are already covered by guaranteed weeks.
That does not diminish the fact that quite a large number of men in manufacturing industry are not covered by guaranteed weeks.
§ Mr. Heffer
Does the right hon. Gentleman accept that many of the agreements are only for a partial guaranteed week in the sense that they may guarantee only a 30-hour week? This makes a very important difference. The Code of Industrial Practice provides:As far as is consistent with operational efficiency and the success of the undertaking, management should seek to avoid redundancies by such means as"—and then it lists various means among which is(d) short-time working to cover temporary fluctuations in manpower needs ".1557 Does not that mean that this is an absolute piece of hypocrisy on the part of the Government because, on the one hand, they say that, and, on the other hand, they undermine the whole basis of it?
§ Sir K. Joseph
What my right hon. Friend must have had in mind is the firm which comes occasionally upon a situation where short-time working can allow a normally continuous operation to survive a short period of difficulty. What cannot be for the health of the country on anything but the shortest view is to have sectors of industry which survive permanently by way of help from the taxpayers through this mechanism.
§ Mr. Dan Jones
The right hon. Gentleman is being very unfair. He wants his cake and to eat it. Does he really think—and here I am arguing for the employer—that any employer wants short-time working? Does not the right hon. Gentleman realise that with short-time working the employer still has full-time overheads to pay?
§ Sir K. Joseph
I do not imagine that any employer or employee wants to take part in consistent short-time working. I am not an economics Minister, but there are implications for the method of management of a firm which finds itself relying regularly upon the National Insurance Fund contributor to subsidise his workers. My job on behalf of the public is to find money from the taxpayer and from the contributor for the highest social priorities. I have made no secret—[Interruption.] I hope that hon. Members opposite will allow me to have my say. I have given way a great deal.
§ 5.15 p.m.
§ Sir K. Joseph
The hon. Member for Walton was generous to me in one respect in Committee where we had many bouts of disagreement. He said that at least I stated my reasons honestly. I state my reason honestly again: I am constantly preoccupied with high priorities of social need which have not been met, and it is my job to obtain money—either by getting fresh money or by switching money—to satisfy the greatest 1558 needs. The hon. Member for Rotherham thoroughly misrepresented what I said in Committee. He sought to paraphrase my remarks by saying that I was robbing the sick to help the poor. That is not what I said. I said that I was searching for areas where what was a high priority had ceased to be as high a priority as some needs which are not being met. I stand by that.
It is open to hon. Members to quarrel with my selection—
§ Sir K. Joseph
—as to what are lower priority areas. But I repeat that here is a sector of what was regarded as normal support by the National Insurance contributor—short-time working. Ten million workers—mostly male and mostly manufacturing workers—are covered by guaranteed weeks of more or less quality. The movement should continue. This is an area above all in which trade unions and employers should negotiate.
It seems to me proper that this money, which is going largely to people who are on suspension for short periods, often from reasonably well paid work, has a lower priority for public spending than the many areas covered by the National Insurance fund such as those to which the Government have diverted money this year, particularly the chronic sick and the very old.
§ Mr. Dan Jones
I apologise for intervening so frequently, but may I ask the Minister whether, prior to introducing this legislation, the Government made an appeal to employers who did not have guaranteed working weeks to introduce guaranteed weeks?
§ Sir K. Joseph
No. But I told the T.U.C. after the Government's decision had been announced, and I have expressed my willingness to declare publicly that the Government would welcome negotiations between workers and employers in those sectors where there is not a guaranteed week. I have said that I am not prepared to make it obligatory because I believe that the economics of each individual industry and firm and the pressure in each industry and firm provide a far better climate for it rather than that there should be a mandate from the Government.
§ Mr. Heffer
Obviously the right hon. Gentleman did not wish to introduce mandatory principles, but would he not agree that until such time as agreements operate throughout industry, and as he has the power under the 1969 Act to fix the date, he should say, "I will not go ahead on 1st January, 1972, but will wait until agreements have been reached by employers and trade unions on the question of the guaranteed week"?
§ Sir K. Joseph
I am not prepared to adopt that attitude. The House must recognise that unless it wishes National Insurance contributions to increase by another £3 million, which would be a perfectly logical alternative, within the National Insurance Fund—[Interruption.] It is no good the hon. Gentleman muttering about surtax. We are dealing with the National Insurance Fund. We can increase the National Insurance contribution, use the £3 million as it is being used now, or let it go, as the Government have provided for, into the pool for the chronic sick and the very old. Those are alternatives. It is for that reason, because we regard the priority for the chronic sick and the very old as a higher priority, that the Government do not accept this new Clause.
§ Mr. Alec Jones (Rhondda, West)
But surely the right hon. Gentleman will agree that the money to provide the additional benefit being made available for the chronic sick and other categories could have come by increasing Exchequer contribution to the National Insurance Fund?
§ Sir K. Joseph
I think I ought to explain again, as I explained to the Committee, that the Government fought the General Election on the thesis of tax relief, that marginal cuts in taxation on earned income and at all levels of income—all levels of income—would be healthy for the future prosperity of this country. It is part of the spectrum of benefits which range from benefit for the very old, the very poor, the sick, the chronic sick, the disabled, right through to the taxpayer, including the surtax payer, as part of the programme on which we went 1560 to the electors, as being healthy to the whole people of this country.
Now I come to a last point which hon. Gentlemen ought to take into account. The Labour Government brought in the commencement Order with the intention at the time of carrying it through. They changed their mind. They were entitled to change their mind. The result of the Government's changing their mind was to give industry the impression that the commencement Order, or, rather, the ending of the suspension arrangements about unemployment, would never be brought into effect, and as a result of the indecision of the last Government, delayed the introduction of a guaranteed payment, in a number of firms and industries, which we, but for their indecision, guaranteed payments on a better or worse scale would have been introduced. I believe that by carrying out our intention to make this commencement Order effective on 1st January next year we shall help to accelerate the spread of guaranteed agreements. It is because of that, and for all the other reasons—
§ Mr. Orme
I think the right hon. Gentleman is missing the central point there. We are all in favour of guaranteed weeks so that if firms run into difficult times and can pay, so much the better, but there are many firms which are not in a position, or not over a long period in a position, to pay this money, and in the short-time working of three days or two days, the supplement of the benefit helps both the employees and the employers to keep afloat in the period of difficulty, particularly in the cotton industry. What the Secretary of State is doing will mean creating more unemployed, not fewer, and the savings will get very little indeed.
§ Sir K. Joseph
It may well be that there are firms which are not, at the moment, as the hon. Gentleman says, in a position to support a guaranteed week. That does not mean that those firms, if they have suspension arrangements, alter them to dismiss men. It may well mean that they will have to look to their methods of management, and if it does, it may thoroughly improve the lot of those people who work for them. That is why I ask my hon. Friends to reject this Clause.
§ Mr. Sillars
We cannot allow the Secretary of State to get away with that 1561 argument. He has argued this afternoon that we are faced with a choice of priorities within the total extent of the National Insurance Fund as it is defined at present. That is not strictly the case because, as my hon. Friend the Member for Rhondda, West (Mr. Alec Jones) pointed out, there is a degree of Government subvention to the fund, and there is nothing in principle or practice to prevent the Government from putting further contributions into the fund above what they do at present.
Then the right hon. Gentleman attempts to extract himself from that difficulty by claiming that the electorate gave the Government a mandate for cutting income tax, and saying that that means that he cannot increase the contributions from the Exchequer to the National Insurance Fund. I feel bound to point out to him that while the Conservative Party certainly had in its election manifesto that it would decrease taxation it did not spell that out in detail by saying that there would be a differential decrease, one decrease for ordinary workers and an entirely different one for surtax payers. It was a blanket undertaking that somehow taxation would be cut.
§ Mr. John Nott (St. Ives)
But surely the Exchequer contribution is exactly the same now as during the time the Labour Party was in Government? It has not been changed.
§ Mr. Sillars
That is right. Our argument is that if the Government want to save £3 million it should be changed now.
§ Mr. O'Malley
Perhaps the hon. Member for St. Ives (Mr. Nott) is not as aware as he ought to be, and as my hon. Friend is, that the Exchequer contribution in percentage terms has varied considerably over a number of years—during the 'fifties and 'sixties. It is not always been 1 per cent.
§ Mr. Sillars
I want to bring the Secretary of State's attention to the Conservative Party manifesto dealing with unemployment and sickness and injury 1562 benefit. The Government claim a mandate to cut taxation, so I think that we are in duty bound to point out to them that on page 22 the manifesto says:Retirement pensions, sickness, unemployment, widowhood and industrial injuries benefits will continue to be paid as of right, and without means tests, in return for National Insurance contributions.They have a sort of mandate for that, too. This Measure does not accord with that so-called mandate which the Conservatives sought by what they said on page 22. There is no indication there to the general public that this Bill would be included in any social security measures which would be implemented by the Conservative Government.
I refer now to the answer which the right hon. Gentleman gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Salford, West (Mr. Orme), when he said my hon. Friend suggested we should give industry time to adjust to the necessity for a guaranteed week, and the Secretary of State said, no, that abolishing it for the moment would do more for workers who might face unemployment. The Conservative Party supported the Labour Government's formula on equal pay, and the workers, it was said, had to have time to adjust to a massive change on the wages front; they had to be forewarned. If the Conservative Party and the Secretary of State are genuine in saying that they want people to have the guaranteed week and to have it as soon as possible. I suggest that, instead of this legislation, the formula proposed to come in 1975 would have been one which the ordinary workers would have welcomed, and which would have been welcomed on both sides of industry, because trade unions and managements would have been forwarned and the Secretary of State would have had additional ammunition for his argument. The fact is that if this Bill goes through unamended it is the working people of this country who will suffer, and not managements.
§ 5.30 p.m.
§ Mr. O'Malley
I am sorry that the Secretary of State thought I was misrepresenting his policy when I said it was one of robbing the sick to help the poor. I thought that that was reasonably accurate judging from what he said in an earlier debate. I would only say that I would not want to misrepresent him.
1563 My hon. Friends described in some detail the industries in their areas which were badly affected by the proposals which which we seek to annul. My hon. Friend the Member for Midlothian (Mr. Eadie) described graphically the situation in Scotland, and several of my hon. Friends representing Lancashire constituencies described the plight of the textile industry and the boot and shoe industry.
The Secretary of State said that the introduction of this new practice would result in pressure for a guaranteed week in industries which did not have one, but my hon. Friend the Member for Burnley (Mr. Dan Jones) pointed out that in the textile and boot and shoe industries the unions have been trying to negotiate a guaranteed working week for many years. All that the right hon. Gentleman could say to this was that it was not the job of his Department or the Government to subsidise workers. He is not subsidising anybody. The workers are paying for these benefits by contributing to the National Insurance Scheme.
§ Sir K. Joseph
If I did say "workers" I was wrong. I thought I said, and I should have said, "firms". Firms who are not accepting the case for a guaranteed week are perhaps doing so because their workers can get subsidies. The answer to the hon. Member for South Ayrshire (Mr. Sillars) is that these workers are not unemployed, they are not looking for a job; they are in employment, they have an employer but they are temporarily suspended.
§ Mr. O'Malley
With respect, the right hon. Gentleman is wrong. They are unemployed within the terms of the National Insurance legislation, they have paid the contributions and they are entitled to the benefits as the scheme stands.
§ Mr. Dan Jones
The Minister has made the point that they are employed part-time and are not looking for work. That is totally wrong. If they had a chance of a full-time job they would leave their part-time work and go to it.
§ Mr. O'Malley
The National Insurance Scheme is not subsidising workers. If the right hon. Gentleman is saying that his Department should not be "subsidising" 1564 employers and if, as my hon. Friends have said, some of the textile industry employers would be in real difficulty if they had to do this, what is the right hon. Gentleman suggesting? Is it the laissez faire policy of the Government that those firms should close down and their employees be thrown out of work? The right hon. Gentleman referred to better management, and I agree that there is a general problem of the standard of management in this country. But the problems of the textile industry are not confined to management. The Lancashire textile industry has been facing serious problems in the last half-century as a result of world pressure.
The right hon. Gentleman argued that over half the men in manufacturing industries were covered by a guaranteed working week. So half of them are not covered by a guaranteed working week, on the right hon. Gentleman's own admission. Even where there are guaranteed working weeks, those schemes have certain limitations. Some are restricted to a 30-hour week.
The position is absolutely unchanged, as it was throughout the whole Committee stage. The right hon. Gentleman is arguing quite blatantly that his job is to switch resources so as to help the higher paid and if, in doing so, he has to take something away from someone who is poorer, he is quite prepared to do it openly. He is also saying that he is not prepared to make an appeal to employers to introduce a guaranteed working week. He says that is nothing to do with him and that the employers and trade unions had better sort this out for themselves. The Government have made no attempt to make guaranteed working week schemes in industry obligatory, and that is why we have to come back to this subject.
We welcome the handful of hon. Gentlemen on the Government side of the House. They have said nothing about this, and no back-bench Members of the Committee showed the slightest interest—
§ Mr. O'Malley
It is a bit late in the day to come along and chunter. The hon. Gentleman could write his contributions 1565 to the Committee on half of one side of a comic postcard. In view of the refusal of the Government to concede anything, or to follow the line which they said they would follow when they were in Opposition, I advise my hon. Friends, and hon. Gentlemen opposite if they have any
§ feelings of decency, to oppose the Government.
§ Question put, That the Clause be read a Second time:—
§ The House divided: Ayes 235, Noes 256.1569
|Division No. 415.||AYES||[5.37 p.m.|
|Abse, Leo||Foot, Michael||Mahon, Simon (Bootle)|
|Albu, Austen||Ford, Ben||Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)|
|Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.)||Forrester, John||Marquand, David|
|Allen, Scholefield||Fraser, John (Norwood)||Marsden, F.|
|Archer, Peter (Rowley Regis)||Freeson, Reginald||Marshall, Dr. Edmund|
|Ashley, Jack||Galpern, Sir Myer||Meacher, Michael|
|Ashton, Joe||Gilbert, Dr. John||Mellish, Rt. Hn. Robert|
|Atkinson, Norman||Golding, John||Mendelson, John|
|Bagier, Gordon A. T.||Gordon Walker, Rt. Hn. P. C.||Mikardo, Ian|
|Barnes, Michael||Gourlay, Harry||Millan, Bruce|
|Barnett, Joel||Grant, George (Morpeth)||Miller, Dr. M. S.|
|Beaney, Alan||Grant, John D. (Islington, E.)||Mitchell, R. C. (S'hampton, Itchen)|
|Bennett, James (Glasgow, Bridgeton)||Griffiths, Eddie (Brightside)||Molloy, William|
|Bidwell, Sydney||Griffiths, Will (Exchange)||Morgan, Elystan (Cardiganshire)|
|Bishop, E. S.||Hamilton, William (Fife, W.)||Morris, Alfred (Wythenshawe)|
|Blenkinsop, Arthur||Hamling, William||Morris, Charles R. (Openshaw)|
|Boardman, H. (Leigh)||Hannan, William (G'gow, Maryhill)||Morris, Rt. Hn. John (Aberavon)|
|Booth, Albert||Hardy, Peter||Moyle, Roland|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hn. Arthur||Harrison, Walter (Wakefield)||Murray, Ronald King|
|Boyden, James (Bishop Auckland)||Hart, Rt. Hn. Judith||O'Halloran, Michael|
|Bradley, Tom||Healey, Rt. Hn, Denis||O'Malley, Brian|
|Brown, Hugh D. (G'gow, Provan)||Heffer, Eric S.||Oram, Bert|
|Brown, Ronald (Shoreditch & F'bury)||Hilton, W. S.||Orme, Stanley|
|Buchan, Norman||Horam, John||Oswald, Thomas|
|Buchanan, Richard (G'gow, Sp'burn)||Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas||Owen, Dr. David (Plymouth, Sutton)|
|Callaghan, Rt. Hn. James||Huckfield, Leslie||Padley, Walter|
|Campbell, I. (Dunbartonshire, W.)||Hughes, Rt. Hn. Cledwyn (Anglesey)||Paget, R. T.|
|Cant, R. B.||Hughes, Mark (Durham)||Palmer, Arthur|
|Carmichael, Neil||Hughes, Robert (Aberdeen, N.)||Pannell, Rt. Hn. Charles|
|Carter-Jones, Lewis (Eccles)||Hughes, Roy (Newport)||Parker, John (Dagenham)|
|Castle, Rt. Hn. Barbara||Hunter, Adam||Parry, Robert (Liverpool, Exchange)|
|Clarke, David (Colne Valley)||Janner, Greville||Pavitt, Laurie|
|Cocks, Michael (Bristol, S.)||Jay, Rt. Hn. Douglas||Peart, Rt. Hn. Fred|
|Cohen, Stanley||Jeger, Mrs. Lena (H'b'n & St. P'cras, S.)||Pendry, Tom|
|Coleman, Donald||Jenkins, Hugh (Putney)||Pentland, Norman|
|Concannon, J. D.||Jenkins, Rt. Hn. Roy (Stechford)||Perry, Ernest G.|
|Corbet, Mrs. Freda||John, Brynmor||Prentice, Rt. Hn. Reg.|
|Cox, Thomas (Wandsworth, C.)||Johnson, Carol (Lewisham, S.)||Prescott, John|
|Crawshaw, Richard||Johnson, James (K'ston-on-Hull, W.)||Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)|
|Cronin, John||Johnson, Walter (Derby, S.)||Price, William (Rugby)|
|Crosland, Rt. Hn. Anthony||Jones, Barry (Flint, E.)||Probert, Arthur|
|Crossman, Rt. Hn. Richard||Jones, Dan (Burnley)||Rankin, John|
|Cunningham, G. (Islington, S. W.)||Jones, Rt. Hn. Sir Elwyn (W. Ham, S.)||Reed, D. (Sedgefield)|
|Dalyell, Tam||Jones, Gwynoro (Carmarthen)||Rees, Merlyn (Leeds, S.)|
|Davidson, Arthur||Jones, T. Alec (Rhondda, W.)||Rhodes, Geoffrey|
|Davies, Denzil (Llanelly)||Judd, Frank||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)|
|Davies, S. O. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Kaufman, Gerald||Robertson, John (Paisley)|
|Davis, Clinton (Hackney, C.)||Kelley, Richard||Roderick, Caerwyn E. (Br'c'n & R'dnor)|
|Davis, Terry (Bromsgrove)||Kerr, Russell||Rodgers, William (Stockton-on-Tees)|
|Deakins, Eric||Kinnock, Neil||Roper, John|
|de Freitas, Rt. Hn. Sir Geoffrey||Lambie, David||Rose, Paul B.|
|Delargy, H. J.||Latham, Arthur||Ross, Rt. Hn. William (Kilmarnock)|
|Dell, Rt. Hn. Edmund||Lawson, George||Sandelson, Neville|
|Dempsey, James||Leadbitter, Ted||Sheldon, Robert (Ashton-under-Lyne)|
|Doig, Peter||Lee, Rt. Hn. Frederick||Shore, Rt. Hn. Peter (Stepney)|
|Dormand, J. D.||Leonard, Dick||Short, Rt. Hn. Edward (N'c'tle-u-Tyne)|
|Douglas, Dick (Stirlingshire, E.)||Lestor, Miss Joan||Silkin, Rt. Hn. John (Deptford)|
|Douglas-Mann, Bruce||Lever, Rt. Hn. Harold||Silkin, Hn. S. C. (Dulwich)|
|Driberg, Tom||Lipton, Marcus||Sillars, James|
|Duffy, A. E. P.||Loughlin, Charles||Silverman, Julius|
|Dunnett, Jack||Lyon, Alexander W. (York)||Skinner, Dennis|
|Eadie, Alex||Lyons, Edward (Bradford, E.)||Small, William|
|Edelman, Maurice||Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson||Smith, John (Lanarkshire, N.)|
|Edwards, Robert (Bilston)||Mc Bride, Neil||Spearing, Nigel|
|Ellis, Tom||McCartney, Hugh||Spriggs, Leslie|
|English, Michael||McGuire, Michael||Stallard, A. W.|
|Evans, Fred||Mackenzie, Gregor||Stewart, Donald (Western Isles)|
|Fernyhough, Rt. Hn. E.||Mackie, John||Stoddart, David (Swindon)|
|Fisher, Mrs. Doris (B'ham, Ladywood)||Maclennan, Robert||Strang, Gavin|
|Fletcher, Ted (Darlington)||McMillan, Tom (Glasgow, C.)||Strauss, Rt. Hn. G. R.|
|Foley, Maurice||McNamara, J. Kevin||Thomas, Rt. Hn. George (Cardiff, W.)|
|Thomas, Jeffrey (Abertillery)||Wallace, George||Williams, W. T. (Warrington)|
|Thomson, Rt. Hn. G. (Dundee, E.)||Watkins, David||Wilson, Rt. Hn. Harold (Huyton)|
|Tinn, James||Weitzman, David||Wilson, William (Coventry, S.)|
|Tomney, Frank||White, James (Glasgow, Pollok)||Woof, Robert|
|Torney, Tom||Whitlock, William|
|Tuck, Raphael||Willey, Rt. Hn. Frederick||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Urwin, T. W.||Williams, Alan (Swansea, W.)||Mr. James Hamilton and|
|Varley, Eric G.||Williams, Mrs. Shirley (Hitchin)||Mr. James A. Dunn.|
|Walden, Brian (B'm'ham, All Saints)|
|Adley, Robert||Foster, Sir John||McLaren, Martin|
|Alison, Michael (Barkston Ash)||Fowler, Norman||Maclean, Sir Fitzroy|
|Allason, James (Hemel Hempstead)||Fraser, Rt. Hn. Hugh (St'fford & Stone)||McMaster, Stanley|
|Archer, Jeffrey (Louth)||Galbraith, Hn. T. G.||Macmillan, Maurice (Farnham)|
|Astor, John||Gardner, Edward||McNair-Wilson, Michael|
|Atkins, Humphrey||Gibson-Watt, David||McNair-Wilson, Patrick (NewForest)|
|Awdry, Daniel||Gilmour, Ian (Norfolk, C.)||Maddan, Martin|
|Baker, Kenneth (St. Marylebone)||Gilmour, Sir John (Fife, E.)||Maginnis, John E.|
|Baker, W. H. K. (Banff)||Glyn, Dr. Alan||Marten, Neil|
|Balniel, Lord||Goodhart, Philip||Mather, Carol|
|Batsford, Brian||Goodhew, Victor||Maude, Angus|
|Beamish, Col. Sir Tufton||Gorst, John||Meyer, Sir Anthony|
|Bennett, Sir Frederic (Torquay)||Gower, Raymond||Mills, Peter (Torrington)|
|Berry, Hn. Anthony||Gray, Hamish||Miscampbell, Norman|
|Biggs-Davison, John||Green, Alan||Mitchell, Lt.-Col. C. (Aberdeenshire, W)|
|Boardman, Tom (Leicester, S. W.)||Gummer, Selwyn||Mitchell, David (Basingstoke)|
|Body, Richard||Hall, Miss Joan (Keighley)||Moate, Roger|
|Boscawen, Robert||Hall, John (Wycombe)||Molyneaux, James|
|Bossom, Sir Clive||Hall-Davis, A. G. F.||Monks, Mrs. Connie|
|Bowden, Andrew||Hamilton, Michael (Salisbury)||Monro, Hector|
|Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hn. John||Hannam, John (Exeter)||Montgomery, Fergus|
|Braine, Bernard||Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye)||More, Jasper|
|Morgan, Geraint (Denbigh)|
|Bray, Ronald||Haselhurst, Alan||Morgan-Giles, Rear-Adm.|
|Brewis, John||Hastings, Stephen||Morrison, Charles (Devizes)|
|Brinton, Sir Tatton||Havers, Michael||Mudd, David|
|Brocklebank-Fowler, Christopher||Hawkins, Paul||Murton, Oscar|
|Brown, Sir Edward (Bath)||Hayhoe, Barney||Nabarro, Sir Gerald|
|Bryan, Paul||Heseltine, Michael||Neave, Airey|
|Buchanan-Smith, Alick (Angus, N & M)||Hicks, Robert||Noble, Rt. Hn. Michael|
|Bullus, Sir Eric||Higgins, Terence L.||Normanton, Tom|
|Burden, F. A.||Hilt, James (Southampton, Test)||Nott, John|
|Butler, Adam (Bosworth)||Holland, Philip||Onslow, Cranley|
|Campbell, Rt. Hn. G. (Moray & Nairn)||Holt, Miss Mary||Oppenheim, Mrs. Sally|
|Carlisle, Mark||Hooson, Emlyn||Orr, Capt. L. P. S.|
|Carr, Rt. Hn. Robert||Hordern, Peter||Owen, Idris (Stockport, N.)|
|Channon, Paul||Hornby, Richard||Page, Graham (Crosby)|
|Chapman, Sydney||Hornsby-Smith, Rt. Hn. Dame Patricia||Page, John (Harrow, W.)|
|Chataway, Rt. Hn. Christopher||Howe, Hn. Sir Geoffrey (Reigate)||Parkinson, Cecil (Enfield, W.)|
|Chichester-Clark, R.||Howell, David (Guildford)||Peel, John|
|Churchill, W. S.||Howell, Ralph (Norfolk, N.)||Percival, Ian|
|Clark, William (Surrey, E.)||Hunt, John||Peyton, Rt. Hn. John|
|Clarke, Kenneth (Rushcliffe)||Hutchison, Michael Clark||Pike, Miss Mervyn|
|Cockeram, Eric||Iremonger, T. L.||Pounder, Rafton|
|Cooke, Robert||Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)||Powell, Rt. Hn. J. Enoch|
|Coombs, Derek||James, David||Price, David (Eastleigh)|
|Cooper, A. E.||Jenkin, Patrick (Woodford)||Pym, Rt. Hn. Francis|
|Cordle, John||Jessel, Toby||Quennell, Miss J. M.|
|Corfield, Rt. Hn. Frederick||Johnson Smith, G. (E. Grinstead)||Raison, Timothy|
|Cormack, Patrick||Jopling, Michael||Rawlinson, Rt. Hn. Sir Peter|
|Critchley, Jullan||Joseph, Rt. Hn. Sir Keith||Redmond, Robert|
|Crouch, David||Kellett-Bowman, Mrs. Elaine||Reed, Laurance (Bolton, E.)|
|Crowder, F. P.||Kilfedder, James||Rees, Peter (Dover)|
|d'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry||Kimball, Marcus||Rees-Davies, W. R.|
|d'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Maj. -Gen. James||King, Tom (Bridgwater)||Renton, Rt. Hn. Sir David|
|Dean, Paul||Kinsey, J. R.||Ridsdale, Julian|
|Dixon, Piers||Kirk, Peter||Rippon, Rt. Hn. Geoffrey|
|Dodds-Parker, Douglas||Kitson, Timothy||Rossi, Hugh (Hornsey)|
|Douglas-Home, Rt. Hn. Sir Alec||Knight, Mrs. Jill||Rost, Peter|
|Drayson, G. B.||Knox, David||Scott, Nicholas|
|du Cann, Rt. Hn. Edward||Lane, David||Scott-Hopkins, James|
|Dykes, Hugh||Langford-Holt, Sir John||Sharples, Richard|
|Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton)||Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry||Shaw, Michael (Sc'b'gh & Whitby)|
|Elliott, R. W. (N'c'tle-upon-Tyne, N.)||Le Marchant, Spencer||Shelton, William (Clapham)|
|Eyre, Reginald||Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland)||Simeons, Charles|
|Farr, John||Lloyd, Ian (P'tsm'th, Langstone)||Sinclair, Sir George|
|Fell, Anthony||Longden, Gilbert||Skeet, T. H. H.|
|Fenner, Mrs. Peggy||Loveridge, John||Smith, Dudley (W'wick & L'mington)|
|Finsberg, Geoffrey (Hampstead)||Luce, R. N.||Soref, Harold|
|Fisher, Nigel (Surbiton)||McAdden, Sir Stephen||Speed, Keith|
|Fletcher-Cooke, Charles||MacArthur, Ian||Spence, John|
|Fookes, Miss Janet||McCrindle, R. A.||Sproat, Iain|
|Stainton, Keith||Thorpe, Rt. Hn. Jeremy||Warren, Kenneth|
|Stanbrook, Ivor||Tilney, John||Weatherill, Bernard|
|Steel, David||Trafford, Dr. Anthony||Wells, John (Maidstone)|
|Stewart-Smith, D. G. (Belper)||Tnew, Peter||Whitelaw, Rt. Hn. William|
|Stokes, John||Tugendhat, Christopher||Wiggin, Jerry|
|Stuttaford, Dr. Tom||Turton, Rt. Hn. Sir Robin||Wilkinson, John|
|Sutcliffe, John||van Straubenzee, W. R.||Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick|
|Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)||Vaughan, Dr. Gerard||Woodhouse, Hn. Christopher|
|Taylor, Edward M. (G'gow, Cathcart)||Vickers, Dame Joan||Worsley, Marcus|
|Taylor, Frank (Moss Side)||Waddington, David||Wylie, Rt. Hn. N. R.|
|Taylor, Robert (Croydon, N. W.)||Walder, David (Clitheroe)||Younger, Hn. George|
|Tebbit, Norman||Walker, Rt. Hn. Peter (Worcester)|
|Temple, John M.||Walker-Smith, Rt. Hn. Sir Derek||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Thatcher, Rt. Hn. Mrs. Margaret||Wall, Patrick||Mr. Walter Clegg and|
|Thomas, John Stradling (Monmouth)||Walters, Dennis||Mr. Tim Fortescue.|
|Thompson, Sir Richard (Croydon, S.)|