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A DOCTORS' STRIKE

The British. Medical Association in Sydney has beon attacked by a Labour member of Parliament who is rather severely taken to task in the Sydney "Morning -Herald 1" for showing tiuu I his professional labour principles are only skin deep. The Medical Association is, says the " Herald, ■' engaged jin a strike/ The doctors are the emIployees of the Friendly Societies. As the final outcome of long-standing trouble they presented their employers with a new "log"—for that and nothing else is Avhat the new agreement is. The chief item in the union's new log was a demand for something like twopence per week for each lodge patient. The Friendly Societies refused to accept the agreement. On the first day of this year the doctors struck; whereupon most of the societies have tried to replace the unionists on strike by making arrangements with free-labour-ers—or, at any rate, with members of what the Trades Hall itself would call a " union of free-labourers," which has been resorted to by the societies with one simple object—to break tho strike. We hold no brief either for the societies or for the doctors. But those are the plain facts. There is no distinction whatever, in principle, beitween this strike and any other strike. The doctors are upholdng the principle of collective bargaining, which they have a perfect right to, do, and the Friendly Societies have" an equally indisputable right to resist them. There has even been some talk of a sympathetic strike of the nurses' union if "free" doctors are employed at the hospitals. I The doctors' union .is resorting to the I means most 1 readily available to it to prevent the "free", .doctors, from replacing the union men. Unionist doctors do not picket the hospitals or fol- ' low the strikers' with hoots in the pubj lie sti*eets;. but they db boycott them, and endeavour to break them socially, which is a fairly forcible, equivalent exercised with precisely the same object. Tlie strike is nothing more nor less than an ordinary strike; and, as in the case of many ordinary strikes, we. cannot help feeling convinced that both sides can afford to make sonle concessions, arid that this is the way in which the quarrel will inevitably, be ended. But that does not in the faintest degree explain the attitude of this heroic upholder of Labour 7 principleb who refers, to the, efforts of -the doctors to meet the increased cost of living as " the worst kind of tyranny."

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG19140218.2.5

Bibliographic details

A DOCTORS' STRIKE, Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8797, 18 February 1914

Word Count
416

A DOCTORS' STRIKE Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8797, 18 February 1914

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