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Tuesday, 13 November 1973
Page: 3185


Mr Keith Johnson (BURKE, VICTORIA) - Has the Minister for Labour received a commendation from the Premier of Victoria, Mr Hamer, for the initiative he took in convening an industrial peace conference? Is he surprised at the cool reception from the Leader of the Opposition and the State Liberal Minister for Labour? Do they really want industrial peace?


Mr Clyde Cameron (HINDMARSH, SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - I have not yet received the letter of commendation from Mr Hamer but I expected it to come at any moment. It would be very odd for a person in Mr Hamer's position not to commend me for the initiative which I have taken. I am suprised at the cool reception which my proposal has received from the Leader of the Opposition and from other honourable members behind him because having, listened to their questions and their criticism of the Government for allegedly not doing anything, one would have thought they would have been only too pleased to give the credit which is due to the Government for the initiative now being taken and to do everything possible to ensure that the conference is a success instead of throwing cold water on it before any of the constituent bodies have even had an opportunity to study the propositions that I am putting.

The Leader of the Opposition, without even discussing the matter or the possible reaction from the parties involved, took it upon himself last night to declare that the conference would fail to reach agreement on certain of the points. It is quite clear that that was a case of the wish being father to the thought. There is no doubt about that; the Opposition parties want the conference to fail. They do not want to see an end to industrial unrest. They think it suits their petty party political aims to have a lot of strikes because they believe that this is one way of trying to embarrass the Government.







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