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PREFACE.

To any one who has carefully observed, step by step, the progress of the great change effected in the Labour Laws of this country, no explanation is necessary for my present appearance as Editor of the Statutes of last Session.

Others, who have not watched so closely, I will merely refer to the Introductory Chapters.

Having taken up the position of an expositor of the Acts, my object has been to combine a popular comment with a strictly practical treatise.

To the Magistrates—the great majority of whom will be called on for the first time to exercise the duties of Judges trying civil causes and assessing damages on strictly legal principles—some guide is essential; while lawyers practising in the Courts of Summary Jurisdiction, however experienced, will, in dealing with the New Law, find many questions requiring careful consideration. I hope this edition of the Statutes will meet their wants.

I offer no apology for giving in the earlier chapters some account of the changes previously effected in the law of Employer and Employed.

The legislation of 1867 (to which it seems to me but scant justice has been done in Parliament),

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PREFACE.

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To any one who has carefully observed, step by step, the progress of the great change effected in the Labour Laws of this country, no explanation is necessary for my present appearance a Eitor of the Statutes of last Session.

Others, who have not watched so closels. I u. merely refer to the Introductory Chapters.

Having taken up the position of an express the Acts, my object has been to comtáne a par comment with a strictly practical treatise.

To the Magistrates—the great majority of ok. will be called on for the first time to exercise te duties of Judges trying civil causes and assessing damages on strictly legal principles—some guide is essential; while lawyers practising in the Courts of Summary Jurisdiction, however experienced, wit, in dealing with the New Law, find many quesóions requiring careful consideration. I hope this edition of the Statutes will meet their wants.

I offer no apology for givi chapters some ount of t.

previously offincted ir

ployed. 1867

eems to me

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although designed to attain much of what we may now hope has been effectually secured, failed from the want of a due appreciation, on the part of its administrators, of the spirit in which it was framed.

The successful working of the Labour Laws of 1875 must depend, to a great extent, on a perfect comprehension by Courts of Summary Jurisdiction of the views ultimately adopted by the Legislature on several subjects on which conflicting opinions were entertained.

In this volume I have included the existing law, comprised in a great variety of Acts of Parliament, on matters closely affecting Workmen and their Employers. Such Statutes as the “ Truck Act” and other allied provisions, and the Laws of 1872 on Mines and Mining, are of course essential to be borne in mind in relation to contracts of service in the most important of our manufactures and productive industry.

One illustration will suffice to show how this past legislation is interwoven with the Labour Laws of the present year.

The Employers and Workmen Act, 1875, contains a clause respecting the deduction, from wages, of forfeitures for absence or for leaving work.

Without attempting to state the effect of this new provision, I will give its history :

One of the numerous questions arising on that very perplexing Statute, the Truck Act of 1831, came before the Court of Queen's Bench as to the

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