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Friday, 27 August 1920


Mr PROWSE (Swan) .- I am in fullest accord with the proposal for the increased working time of this House. It has interested me very much to hear honorable members representing New South Wales constituencies refer to their wishes in the matter, but I would point out that there are some honorable members in this House who cannot get to their homes unless they spend nine days in travelling in trains.. Since February last, with the exception of the intermission on the occasion of the arrival of His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, we have been here unable to visit our homes, wandering about Melbourne, while others have been able to go to their homes or attend to their business in the adjacent States. This morning an honorable member has asked thatthe Tuesday's sitting be suspended for a week in order that he may remain in New South Wales next Tuesday. If a spirit of fairness is displayed honorable members will recognise that Queensland, Western Australia, and Tasmania are also integral portions of the Commonwealth, and that the representatives of constituencies in those States, who are obliged to live in Melbourne continuously in order to do their duty to their electors, should receive some consideration.


Mr Charlton - I can give the honorable member the tip that he will not get home one day earlier by sitting here six days a week.


Mr PROWSE - That statement can only be interpreted as a reflection on this Parliament. I intend to sit in the House while there is business to be done. When the work is completed the Government can go on with its administration, and members can return to their constituencies. It is quite impossible for Queensland and Western Australian members to have any talk with their constituents during the session, unless they ask for leave of absence. Iam in thorough agreement with the increase in working hours asked for, especially in view of the fact that there is such a pressure of business, all of which is needed in the interests of the country.

Question resolved in the affirmative.







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