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Thursday, 19 July 1906

Mr SALMON (Laanecoorie) . - I quite agree with the attitude of the Government on this question. We have decided that as far as possible we shallrely for our defence upon a citizensoldiery, and that the training of our soldiers shall commence at as early an age as practicable. Under these circumstances, we cannot begin too soon to insist upon a good example in the direction of temperance. I have had some years' experience in the Defence Forces, and from the peculiar position that I have occupied as a medical officer, I have had exceptional opportunities to judge of the results of the canteen system. I am very glad to say that notwithstanding the existence of the canteen in camps, the cases of drunkenness have now been reduced almost to a mini mum. These results have been brought about in spite of the canteens, and not because of them. In my opinion, the position of the men at Queenscliff and Victoria Barracks in Sydney has become one of danger, owing to the canteen being constantly at their elbow, and I think that it is one of the first duties of this Parliament to take measures to remove an undoubted temptation. The honorable and learned member for Corio suggested an amendment, but I trust that he will not press it, because his wishes can be carried out by means of regulations. After all, the matter to which he referred is one of discipline, and I am sure that those who are responsible for the conduct of our camps will, in the event of the Bill being passed, recognise that they must altogether prohibit the introduction of liquor. I have very much pleasure in supporting the Bill.

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