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Wednesday, 25 August 1920

Mr RILEY (South Sydney) .- I support the amendment. I have had experience of Arbitration Court proceedings, and I know that employers on many occasions have threatened that any one complaining to an officer of a union about his conditions of employment, or giving evidence before the Court, would be no longer employed. The result has been that people in many industries have been prevented from asserting themselves. If the Government are anxious to make the Arbitration Act more effective, they should give every protection to persons who- give evidence before the Court or lodge complaints against unfair conditions. The employer should be liable to a penalty for threatening to dismiss just as he is for actual dismissal.

Mr Bell - Is not the threat ineffective when the employee knows that it cannot be carried out?

Mr RILEY - No.

Mr Considine - The employer can dismiss the man in any case.

Mr RILEY - The employer can always evade the Act by saying that an employee does not suit him', and dismissing him on that ground. I think the amendment should be agreed to.

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