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Wednesday, 7 July 1920

Mr TUDOR (Yarra) .- This is one of the most vital portions of the Bill. A lot of the trouble that has arisen has been caused by the continual postponements. I realize that the original postponement owing to the then existing conditions was absolutely necessary, but we are getting out of those conditions to-day, and what I am pleading for is a definite statement as to the time when we are likely to make a start in rendering our navigation legislation effective. It is of no use to hold the Actbefore the seamen and others employed on ships as a placard, with the assurance that at some time or other we are going to confer these benefits on them. That is one of the things that the seamen complain of, and rightly so. Can the Minister tell the Committee what has been done with the British Merchant Shipping Act, and with regard to the Convention, and the amending Act which was passed and assented to on the 1st August, 1914, just prior to the war?Is that Act in operation so far as Great Britain is concerned ? If it is, there is no reason why the Australian Act should not be put into operation. Whilst in the case of most of our Acts we bring the whole measure into operation at once, this legislation is cut into sections, and it is provided that we can put different sections into operation at different times. If a. good deal of this legislation were put into operation it would save a great deal of difficulty and trouble such as we have experienced in the past.

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