• Short Summary

    A STATE OF EMERGENCY WAS DECLARED IN BRITAIN TODAY (MONDAY). PRIME MINISTER HAROLD WILSON HAS?

  • Description

    A STATE OF EMERGENCY WAS DECLARED IN BRITAIN TODAY (MONDAY). PRIME MINISTER HAROLD WILSON HAS THUS ARMED HIMSELF WITH WIDE POWERS TO DEAL WITH THE NATIONAL SEAMEN'S STRIKE WHICH IS THROTTLING BRITAIN'S TRADE.

    QUEEN ELIZABETH SIGNED THE ORDER WHICH GIVES THE GOVERNMENT POWER TO SET MAXIMUM PRICES FOR FOOD, AND TO TAKE ACTION TO CONTROL PORT TRAFFIC. MR WILSON TOLD PARLIAMENT THAT HIS ADMINISTRATION WOULD NOT USE ANY OF THESE POWERS IMMEDIATELY, BUT DECLARED: "THE GOVERNMENT MUST PROTECT THE VITAL INTERESTS OF THE NATION."
    FULL DETAILS OF THE GOVERNMENT'S LIKELY MOVES TO COUNTER THE EIGHT-DAY-OLD SEAMEN'S WALKOUT WERE NOT IMMEDIATELY DISCLOSED, BUT IT IS KNOWN TO HAVE DRAWN UP CONTINGENCY PLANS TO USE NAVAL TUGS TO TOW AWAY BRITISH MERCHANT SHIPS LEFT EMPTY IN THE DOCKS, SO THAT FOREIGN-OWNED VESSELS CAN GET IN WITH VITAL FOOD AND RAW-MATERIAL SUPPLIES.

    THE 62,000 STRONG SEAMEN'S UNION IS DEMANDING A 40 HOUR WEEK. THIS, THE SHIP OWNERS SAY, IS THE EQUIVALENT OF A 17 PER CENT PAY RISE. LAST YEAR SEAMEN RECEIVED A PAY RISE OF 13 PER CENT AND THE SHIP OWNERS SAY THEY CANNOT AFFORD THE UNION DEMANDS. IN SPITE OF A SERIES OF TALKS WITH THE BRITISH MINISTER OF LABOUR. MR RAY GUNTER, THE TWO SIDES REMAIN DEADLOCKED AND THE OUTLOOK FOR AN IMMEDIATE SETTLEMENT IS BLEAK.

    MEANWHILE 500 SHIPS ARE STANDING IDLE AND EXPORTS TOTALLING 350,000 TONS AND VALUED AT GBP40 MILLION ARE HELD UP IN PORTS ALL AROUND BRITAIN. AND THE SITUATION IS GETTING WORSE DAILY.

    THE LAST TIME A STATE OF EMERGENCY WAS DECLARED IN BRITAIN WAS IN 1955 DURING A RAIL STRIKE AND BEFORE THAT IN 1949, AND 1948, WHEN DOCK STRIKES THREATENED TO HOLD UP EXPORTS AND IMPORTS. DURING THE 1949 STRIKE 4000 TROOPS WERE CALLED INTO THE LONDON DOCKS TO LOAD AND UNLOAD FOODSTUFFS AND OTHER PERISHABLE GOODS. BY THE TIME THE STRIKE ENDED MORE THAN 11,000 TROOPS WERE IN ACTION REPLACING THE 15,000 LONDON DOCKERS.

    ALREADY THE NAVY HAS STEPPED IN TO DELIVER SUPPLIES TO THE WESTERN ISLES OFF THE COAST OF SCOTLAND. THE MINESWEEPER "BOLTON" IS BEING USED IN "OPERATION SHORTBREAD". THE MINESWEEPER SETS SAIL TOMORROW WITH EIGHT TONS OF SUPPLIES ABOARD.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA9BB0PA8UAJ29H0ZU548E7AK9U
    Media URN:
    VLVA9BB0PA8UAJ29H0ZU548E7AK9U
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    23/05/1966
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:01:55:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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