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Tuesday, 19 July 1904

Mr McWILLIAMS (Franklin) - I formally move -

That the following new clause be inserted : - " 32a. (1) Whenever the President or Court shall so require the parties to any industrial dispute shall each supply for the information of the Court a written offer of compromise stating the full extent of any compromise which they are willing to make on any points in difference. -

Penalty : One hundred pounds.

(2)   If any offers of compromise are supplied pursuant to the preceding sub-section, and the Court afterwards proceeds to an award, then the award on the points in difference in respect to which the offers of compromise have been supplied, shall be one or the other of the compromises offered unless the Court shall for special reasons see fit to expressly decide to the contrary."

I hope that the provision will be considered, because its object is an exceedingly good one. I believe that very often it w'ould bringthe contending parties together without going into Court. If there are two parties to a dispute, the employer will put his price at a limit on the one side, and the employé will put his price at a limit on the other side, and they will certainly go to Court. But if they knew that there was a chance of the Court selecting that which was fair then- the tendency would be for each to ask what he thought was reasonable, and the probability is that the offer on one side or the other would be accepted, the margin being so small. The object pf the honorable member for South Sydney is so thoroughly in sympathy with the object of the Bill - to prevent disputes, and to bring the parties together without going to law - that it might be allowed to stand over to-night in the hope that the new clause will receive that consideration which I believe it merits.

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