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Tuesday, 16 August 1960


Mr THOMPSON (PORT ADELAIDE, SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - Is the Minister for Labour and National Service aware that the penal clauses of the Arbitration Act have been invoked by the shipowners against the Seamen's Union for refusing work? Is he also aware that the shipowners themselves; or the captain of the ship, fine a seaman two days' pay for each day he refuses to work, in addition to the penalty under the penal clauses of the act, and that the Seamen's Union feels that unless something can be done to alter this double penalty there is very little hope of peace in the industry?


Mr McMAHON - I do not agree with the conclusions of the honorable gentleman, as expressed in the last part of his question. As to the two questions that he has asked, I am well aware that the shipowners - not only the Australian National Line but also the combined steamship owners, the Broken Hill Proprietary Company Limited and other independent operators - have all approached the court for orders under sections 109 and 111 of the act. I am also aware that masters of ships are logging men for the days on which they do not man the ships. I personally feel, and I make this comment quite strongly, that the time is coming when the seamen themselves will realize that they are being led by the nose by the Communist leaders of the Seamen's Union. If they want to stop these loggings and applications to the court, the remedy is in their own hands. They can do so only by getting rid of their Communist leaders, so that the industry may be run efficiently.







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