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Monday, 2 December 2002
Page: 6884

Senator HARRADINE (7:48 PM) —The minister must advise the committee why she is saying that the guidelines of the NHMRC cover the situation. The guidelines do not cover the situation, apart from those institutions which are receiving an NHMRC grant. Secondly, there is nothing in the NHMRC guidelines about protecting university students, and this amendment covers it. Again, I offer the minister the opportunity of telling the committee why there is such a difference between `if' and `because'. I quote from the amendment:

A person commits an offence if the person:

... ... ...

(b) compels another person in the course of his or her employment or study to be involved with research on human embryos or human embryonic stem cells if that other person conscientiously objects to conducting research on human embryos or human embryonic stem cells.

The minister says she objects to the word `if' and wants `because'. I think it is fair for the committee to be advised why `if' is such a problem: `if that other person conscientiously objects'. What really is the difference between that and `because that other person conscientiously objects'? What is the difference?