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Tuesday, 3 May 1994
Page: 22


Senator BOSWELL (Leader of the National Party of Australia) —Mr President, I too would like to associate the members of the National Party in the Senate with the condolence motion moved by Senator Gareth Evans.

  John Marriott had a long and distinguished career in federal politics as a Liberal senator for Tasmania for 23 years and was a member of a well-known Tasmanian political family. He was educated at the Church of England Grammar School in Launceston. He began his working life in real estate before undertaking articles with an accountant in Launceston.

  In 1940 John Marriott joined the AIF and served with the Australian Corps of Signals in the Middle East and New Guinea. On his return to civilian life at the end of the war he furthered his interest in politics through working with the Tasmanian Liberal Party organisation. He served as secretary to the Leader of the Opposition in the House of Assembly from 1949 to 1953. In 1953 John Marriott's career in federal politics was launched when he was elected to the Senate as a Liberal senator for Tasmania. He worked hard on committees and served as deputy chairman of the Senate Select Committee on the Metric System of Weights and Measures from 1967 to 1968 when the historic decision was made that Australia adopt the metric system.

  Later in his political career John Marriott became a committed anti-drug campaigner. He served as Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Drug Trafficking and Drug Abuse and was also the Australian consultant to the United States National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse. He was able to shape the view of the Senate committee that education campaigns were necessary to inform people, especially teenagers, about the dangers of drug abuse, both legal and illegal. Through his position as assistant health minister, John Marriott was able to bring considerable weight to this critical area.

  In 1975, John Marriott left politics, bringing his and his family's political career to a close. He had represented the people of Tasmania well for 23 years. He was a strong and vigorous campaigner for the anti-drug trafficking and drug abuse cause, and for this laudable endeavour he will be remembered. I am sure that all honourable senators will join me in extending sympathy to John Marriott's family and friends.