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Thursday, 12 May 1921

Senator GARDINER (New South Wales) .- The Minister (Senator Pearce) , has made a very fair attempt to meet the wishes of the Committee as expressed when the subject was previously discussed, but it is not quite clear that his amendment gives the right of appeal on anything except a wrong done by an officer. A soldier may be labouringunder a grievance or wrong which cannot be sheeted home to any one in particular. Still, it may be a real injustice which ought to be redressed, and which would be redressed if he had an opportunity to state his case fully. Does not the opening sentence of the amendment limit the appeal to the case of a wrong or injury done by some one person ?

Senator Pearce - The soldier has the right to take his complaint to his officer in the first place, no matter what it may be. If his officer does not redress it, then he has been wronged, and I should say that in that case he has the right of appeal.

Senator GARDINER - That struck me as quite a debatable question when I heard the amendment read.

Senator Pearce - Paragraph c of proposed new sub-section 4 makes that quite clear.

Senator GARDINER - Perhaps I shall be in a better position to discuss the matter if I take a little time to read the Minister's amendment carefully.

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