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Wednesday, 10 July 1946

Mr FADDEN (DARLING DOWNS, QUEENSLAND) - In view of the fact that the Communist party's domination of some of thelargest trade unions has resulted in major industrial upheavals, will the Prime Minister now consider the introduction of legislation requiring all trade unions to lodgewith the Registrar of the Commonwealth Court of Conciliation and Arbitrationcomplete lists of their members, in order toprovide that ballots betaken by theRegistrarto fill unpaid executive positions? If not, what action does the Prime Minister intend to take to ensure that the leadership of trade unions shall reflect the opinion of the members?

Mr.CHIFLEY. - As to the suggestion of the Leader of the Country party that the names of members of trade unions should be lodged with the Registrar of the Arbitration Court, that is a matter to which consideration will probably be given when a proposed bill to provide for amendments of the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Actis receiving attention by the Government. Although it is perfectly true that some persons, who are leaders of trade unions, admit that they areCommunists, it certainly cannot be said that the great body of trade unionists are dominated by members of theCommunist party. The right honorable gentleman need only consider who are the leaders and secretaries of some of the trade unions in this .country to realize that the majority of their executive officers a-re not Communists.

Mr Fadden - In the key unions they are.

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