20 MAY 1922, Page 3

The employers, it must be said, have gained public sympathy

in so far as their specific allegations against the Amalgamated Engineering Union have not been answered. They gave definite cases in which the union carried its prohibition of overtime to ridiculous lengths, irrespective of the special emergencies which must arise in every business. They mentioned stupid disputes over the use of new machines. Thus, " eleven new machines lay idle for more than a year because the engineers would not allow them to be operated by machine-men perfectly competent to do so." In ignoring these charges, the union has created a very bad impression ; it is obvious that the charges must be well founded and equally obvious that British industry cannot advance unless the engineers modify their intense conservatism. Nevertheless, the employers have been ill-advised in taking their stand on vague and general phrases about " managerial control " instead of trying to work out clear and definite methods by which works managers and trade union executives can co-operate with good will. We are glad to know that' the employers are apparently adopting more practical and business. like tactics now that the conferences are resumed.