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Tuesday, 20 October 1970

Mr SNEDDEN (BRUCE, VICTORIA) (Minister for Labour and National Service) - The question that the honourable gentleman raises is one of very considerable difficulty in the industrial area. There are 2 unions representing firemen and competition exists between the two. I think the way in which the honourable gentleman put his question was to ask whether 1 would use influence with the Queensland Government to achieve a result. I assure -him that I will not do that. I- think that, when there are disputes as between unions, issues are raised which are very difficult to solve and, very often, somebody wanting to do good only achieves harm. I am afraid that that may be the case here. I will not do that. 1 am well aware of the circumstances of the competition. Equally, of course, the honourable gentleman will know that recently the High Court ruled that fire fighting was not an industry. I have had a letter recently asking me to receive a deputation. That letter came from the Federal President of the Firemen's Union. I propose to reply to the effect that .! will be very glad to receive him because he happens to be a man whom I have known for very many years and like as a nian. But I do not think that I will be able to achieve the result he wants.

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