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Wednesday, 27 July 1921

Senator CRAWFORD (Queensland) . - It is right that the Board should have the power given to it by the clause; but I do not know that it should be permitted to delegate its authority to any accountant. There is nothing in the Bill which places upon a person employed by the Board to go through the books of a firm, the obligation not to divulge infor- mation which will rest on the members of the Board.

Senator E D MILLEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - The same thing might be said of the employment of accountants and others by the Law Courts; but the Judges in appointing them take from them the assurance that they will preserve secrecy.

Senator CRAWFORD - There is nothing in the Bill requiring the Board to: impose upon those whom it employs the obligation to observe secrecy.

Senator JOHN D MILLEN (TASMANIA) - The responsibility would be on the Board if a leakage of information occurred.

Senator Russell - The membersof the Board will not make a personal examination of the books of a firm; they will giveauthority to special officers, who will be responsible for the preservation of secrecy.

Amendment negatived.

Clause agreed to.

Clauses 28 to 33 agreed to.

Clause 34 -

(1)   Any employer who dismisses any employee from his employment, or prejudices any employee in his employment, for or on account; of the employee having appeared as a witness beforethe Board, or for' or on account of the employee having given evidence before the Board, shall be guilty ofan indictable offence.

Penalty : Five hundred pounds, or imprisonment for one year.'

(2)   Inmy proceedingfor any oflence against this section, it shall lie upon the employer to prove that any employee, shown to have been dismissed or prejudiced in his employment, was so dismissed orprejudiced for some reason other' than the reasons mentioned in subsection (1) of this section.

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