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Wednesday, 30 June 1937

Senator BROWN - He did nothing of the kind.

Senator PAYNE - The honorable senator said that the crews of Japanese luggers were guilty of poaching and crimes against aboriginal women. Public men should be more careful in the statements that they make, particularly when the actions of the subjects of another nation are criticized. Especially at a time like the present, I am not content to stand idly by when such statements against another nation are made. Surely the honorable senator realizes that the owners of the luggers are responsible for the actions of the members of their crews. The offending luggers are registered in Australia. I remind Senator J. V. MacDonald of the old adage that "People who live in glass houses should not throw stones ". The Government is determined that the ordinances controlling the pearling industry in Australian waters shall be observed, not only in the spirit, but also the letter. Senator J. V. MacDonald should be more careful and, so far as he is able, refrain from such utterances until he is sure that his information is correct. I know that the Government is anxious that the aborigines shall receive fair treatment from the white people, and especially from employers, who should be responsible for the action of their employees.

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