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Wednesday, 1 December 1965

Mr BOWEN (Parramatta) .- Some observations have been made about the function of the judicial member.

Mr Buchanan - I was not talking about him.

Mr BOWEN - I will. The judicial member under clause 19 is the presidential member. He may give directions as to the arrangement and business of divisions and the constitution of divisions of the tribunal. Therefore one may assume that he will decide whether he will have assisting him a member with practical experience or a member with knowledge of industry, commerce, or public administration. I suggest that we can leave the clause with its present degree of flexibility and leave it to the discretion of the President of the tribunal to select from the lay members those best fitted for the particular case. At the heart of this matter there is a person of judicial status as President. He does not need practical experience because what he brings to the judgment of the tribunal is a technique of judging which he has gained by his professional training over a great many years. It could be that anybody could, by devoting their life to a study of law, acquire this technique of judging and sit as a judicial member on the tribunal. I doubt whether the lay member who brings his personal knowledge to the matter will contribute a great deal to the decision. We do not object to that. I suggest that it is not necessary to circumscribe the authority of the President under clause 19 to determine the constitution of the division.

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