The Struggle against State Intervention 1962–70
Changes of public opinion even at the highest levels do not always coincide with changes of government, and if we are to choose a date for the beginning of widespread concern about the need for a national incomes policy, then 1962 is a better year to choose than 1964, when the Conservative Government was defeated in a general election. In 1962 the strong opposition that the ‘pay pause’ had encountered suggested that for the future some more flexible and less negative approach to the control of incomes was essential. The government therefore proposed to follow the ‘pause’, which was due to end in March 1962, with a period of moderate and orderly advance which it hoped to substitute for a ‘free-for-all’ of rapid increases in wages by the stronger unions designed to compensate for the period of the standstill. Selwyn Lloyd, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, therefore informed the T.U.C.’s Economic Committee that for the rest of the year wage settlements should conform to a ‘guiding light’ of a 2 1/2 per cent increase. He invited the T.U.C, to join in sponsoring this policy and to agree to representation on a new body, to be called the National Economic Development Council, which would examine the long-term prospects for growth in the economy and advice on the processes for securing it.
KeywordsCollective Bargaining Industrial Relation Labour Party Union Official Income Policy
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