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Friday, 4 March 1927

Senator PEARCE (Western Australia) (Vice-President of the Executive Council) . - I shall have inquiry made into the matter referred to by Senator Duncan. Speaking offhand it occurs to me that there are two classes of trade unions. The Amalgamated Society of Engineers and the Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners are not only trade unions, but also bodies in the nature of friendly societies, because they pay sick benefits. I should say they would be registered both as trade unions and friendly societies. There is another class of trade union, such as the Australian Workers Union, which cannot be registered under the Friendly Societies Act. I agree that it is desirable to encourage the unions to invest their funds in Commonwealth securities, and that safeguards should be provided for the proper protection of those funds. The point raised is an interesting one, and in order to have it looked into before the committee proceeds further with the bill I ask that progress be reported.

Progress reported.

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