§ 2. Mr. Wigley
asked the Secretary of State for Defence what steps are taken by his Department when considering the closure of bases owned by them, to phase such closures over a period of time to enable those directly and indirectly dependent on his Department for employment to find alternative work.
§ Mr. Lee
We seek to give the earliest possible warning of establishment closures to all concerned, including hon. Members, and to minimise any redundancies that may be necessary. When a decision on closure has been taken, we seek to phase the rundown consistent with meeting defence requirements and in consultation with the trade unions. Staff are transferred to other jobs in Government service where this is possible, and management is encouraged to assist those who are redundant in seeking alternative employment. We also seek to ensure that staff, contractors and others are informed as soon as detailed plans affecting their interests are drawn up.