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Wednesday, 9 March 1966

Mr BARNES - At the hearing by the Arbitration Commission the Commonwealth made very clear its ideas on what it required. It is our policy, of course, to bring Aborigines into complete equality with white Australians. We realise that there are problems after a very long period of inequality, but this Government has done more than any other Government before to bring about equality. It is no easy matter to advance people from a static position to equality with Europeans. We made our position clear. The union put its case for the Aborigines and the pastoralists put their case. The Commission, in its wisdom, has given these findings. I think it gave very close attention to this matter, which is a very important one, and I believe that we should abide by what is, in a sense, the umpire's decision.

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