Cablegram 377  [PHILADELPHIA], 4 May 1944, 4.32 a.m.
I.L.O. Report 21.
1. As previously indicated  the United States Government put
forward the draft cabled to you  as a substitute for
Declaration 2 in the report on item 2 of the agenda.  It was
necessary for us, therefore, to circulate an amendment  to our
own text.  We also made it clear that we did not regard this as
a substitute for office resolution No. 2 as this resolution was
much wider and referred to the right of collective bargaining.
2. I sent early this morning a letter  to Miss Perkins saying
that I regretted their action in putting forward a draft without
prior consultation as agreed and their action in obtaining
publicity for it and I gave her the text of a statement  which
I intended to make this morning. She immediately spoke to me but I
went ahead with my statement, the general nature of which you will
have seen in the press. It strongly criticized the American draft
and pointed out that there were no binding commitments. I had the
workers on my side because our amendment did not threaten  the
declaration concerning collective bargaining and the whole morning
was devoted to the American-Australian proposals.
3. The local press headlined our criticism on the United States
draft. As a result a meeting took place between Nash, Miss
Perkins, Goodrich and Burton. Without indicating details of the
discussion it is sufficient to say that the Americans are
obviously very concerned not to let this issue become prominent.
We have, therefore, adopted a strong line and this evening will be
spent in drafting a Resolution which will contain all our points.
It might also have to contain a reference to the rights of
collective bargaining and other social objectives, but we will
attempt to obtain employment agreement separate from the other
issues. We shall also try to add a specific undertaking that any
obligations contracted in relation to monetary and commercial
proposals shall be dominated by obligation of employment. This
draft will then go forward within the next day or so to the
Committee on items 1  and 2 as an Australian - American
proposal, that is, of course, provided Miss Perkins can obtain
authority and provided that it is satisfactory to us. While it is
clear that working through Treasury and State Department we could
not get agreement, it does seem probable that working from the
political level to the departmental level, we can achieve results.
4. The one concession we must make if we wish  this agreement
is that the International Labour Office be recognised as the
'appropriate authority' to which we refer in our text. Your
statement to the House mentions  specifically the I.L.O. 
and my inclination is to prefer the I.L.O. Our purpose then should
be to make its status more satisfactory and work for radical
changes in its administration. We will do our best also to obtain
membership on the Governing Body. To-morrow I hope to be able to
give you the text which we will agree to put forward to the
Committee without, of course, any commitment of our Government. I
would prefer that we delay a day or so in order to obtain your
reaction as it would be valuable to be able to put up an
Australian-American proposal based on Australian text and with the
full authority of the Australian Government. If we can delay
presentation to the Committee for a few days we shall.
5. My statements have brought this matter right into the field of
monetary and commercial policy and there can be no room for doubt
in the minds of the American Administration of the implications of
this agreement for economic collaboration generally. But to make
quite certain I shall have included appropriate reference either
to Article 7 or to other United Nations and as well try to insert
the extra clause indicated above. If I succeed in doing this, I
believe we shall not only have made our position clear and have
left ourselves with much more freedom in relation to Article 7 but
also we shall have done so with the support of the majority of
governments and workers and employers representatives at this
6. It was most important for me to be able to claim Australian
initiative in order that our draft should take priority. I
therefore took advantage of the position to refer to your previous
work in some detail and I made the following reference-
'considerable credit  is due to the farsightedness and
statesmanlike leadership of the Australian Foreign Minister, Dr.
Evatt.' I also quoted in full the first of the five points
mentioned in your statement on Canadian Mutual Aid.
7. Committees on the other items of the agenda have been
progressing but it has not been possible for us to give them much