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Monday, 11 June 1928


I wish to say one or two words on the third reading of this bill. We have fought its obnoxious clauses - and there are many - inch by inch, and line by line. We have succeeded in bringing about a few slight modifications of those clauses. I regret that this Parliament has, by passing this legislation, struck a severe blow at the principle of arbitration, and this party will take the earliest opportunity of repealing its obnoxious provisions. It has been said by some that we have fought this bill because we desire to make it an election issue. My answer is this: Let the Government at this late hour drop this measure and co-operate with us in remedying the imperfections of the existing act. If that is done, it cannot be said that we have fought this bill for election purposes. We are in earnest on the subject of arbitration, and we regret that a blow has been struck at it. We desire, even at this stage, to cooperate with the Government in . wiping out the penal clauses of this bill, and drafting other provisions that will make for a better law and restore the confidence of the people in the principle of arbitration.

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