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Thursday, 31 October 1912

Senator PEARCE (Western AustraliaMinister of Defence) . - I move -

That the amendment be agreed to.

Under the clause as it stands, it will be necessary for the master to post up a copy of the agreement at the beginning of the voyage. In the case of the coast-trade ships, a voyage seldom lasts more than a few weeks, perhaps only a few days. Sub-clause 2 makes provision, to prevent any copy of the agreement being defaced.

Motion agreed to.

Clause 52 -

The master of every, foreign-going ship shall, within forty-eight hours after arrival in any port in Australia or upon the discharge of his crew, whichever first happens, deliver the agreement to the superintendent ....

House of Representatives' Amendment.- Omit " in any port," insert " at her final port of destination."

Sentaor PEARCE (Western AustraliaMinister of Defence) [5.52]. - I move -

That the amendment be agreed to.

As the Bill left the Senate there was considerable overlapping in this matter. In clauses 52, 164, and 168, the master was required to deposit with the superintendent all documents relating to his crew ; but different periods were provided for. Under this clause the term allowed was forty-eight hours after arrival in any port. Under clause 164 the time was twenty-four hours, and under clause 168 it had to be done immediately. In the amendments which are being considered a uniform practice is provided for.

Motion agreed to.

Amendments to clauses 56 and 59 agreed to.

Clause 60 - (1.) A seaman not shipped in Australia shall not be discharged (except at the end of his service at the time specified in his agreement)un- less, the master has previously obtained the sanction of the superintendent indorsed on theagreement. (3.) A master of a ship not complying with this section shall be. guilty of an indictable offence, and in any legal proceeding for the offence it shalllie on the master to prove that the sanction was obtained or could not be obtained or was unreasonably withheld.

House of Representatives' Amendments.- Omit "or could not be obtained" and add to clause " and it shall bc a good defence if the master proves that under the circumstances it was not reasonably practicable for him to apply for the sanction."

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