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Wednesday, 3 June 1970

ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS UPON NOTICE

The following answers to questions upon notice were circulated:

Papua and New Guinea: Ratification of Convention (Question No. 980)

Mr ClydeCameron asked the Minister for External Territories, upon notice:

In view of his reply to my question No. 695 (Hansard, 5 May 1970, page 1664), from which it appears that several articles of International Labour Organisation Convention No. 110 are being violated by the Commonwealth, will he give an undertaking that steps will be taken to repeal those sections of Ordinance No. 38 of 1962 of the Territory of Papua and New Guinea which offend against the Convention.

Mr Barnes- The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

Australia has not ratified Convention No. 110. Whether sections of the Ordinance should be repealed is a matter of policy.

International Labour Organisation Convention: Maternity Leave (Question No. 581)

Mr ClydeCameron asked the Minister for Labour and National Service, upon notice:

(1) Is it a fact that International Labour Organisation Convention No. 103 provides that a pregnant employee shall be entitled to maternity leave of at least 12 weeks' absence from work .on full pay.

(2) What is the period of paid maternity leave available to an employee of the Commonwealth who has no other leave entitlements.

(3) Which of the member States have ratified Convention No. 103.

Mr Snedden- The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) I.L.O. Convention No. 103 - Maternity Protection (Revised), 1952 provides, inter alia, that a woman to whom the Convention applies shall be entitled, on the production of a medical certificate stating the presumed date of her confinement, to maternity leave of at least twelve weeks including at least six weeks' compulsory leave after her confinement. It provides also that while absent from work on maternity leave in accordance with the above provisions, the woman is to be entitled to receive cash and medical benefits provided either by means of compulsory social insurance or from public funds. In no case is the employer to be individually liable for the cost of such benefits due to women employed by him.

(2) A female office who is pregnant must absent herself from duty for a period of 12 weeks and may secure leave of absence not exceeding 26 weeks for the purposes of her confinement.

The Commonwealth pays a maternity benefit in the form of a lump sum to all mothers who reside or intend to reside in Australia permanently and who give birth to a child in Australia. Women resident in Australia are also eligible for a cash benefit before, during and after confinement, provided their incomes do not exceed a certain amount and in the case of those who are married provided their husbands are unable to maintain them. Additionally, female officers of the Commonwealth may debit absence relating to maternity against recreation leave, sick leave or furlough entitlements.

(3) 13 of the 121 member States have ratified this Convention - viz. Austria, Brazil, Byelorussia, Cuba, Ecuador, Hungary, Luxembourg, Mongolia, Spain, Ukraine, U.S.S.R., Uruguay, Yugoslavia.

National Labour Advisory Council: Tripartite Committee (Question No. 8S1) Mr Clyde Cameron asked the Minister for Labour and National Service upon notice:

(1) Has the National Labour Advisory Council established the tripartite committee proposed by the Australian Council of Trade Unions to study the situation raised in the Commonwealth Industrial Court case, Moore v. Doyle and Others, concerning the status of branches of registered federal organisations that are separately registered under State Arbitration Acts.

(2) If so, on how many occasions has the committee met.

(2) When does the committee expect to be in a position to present its report to the National Labour Advisory Council.

Mr Snedden- The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows: (1), (2) and (3) Following consultation with my State colleagues, agreement has been reached on the establishment of a committee comprising representatives of the Commonwealth and State Governments, the national employers' organisations and the A.C.T.U. to examine the implications of the Commonwealth Industrial Court's judgment in the case of Moore v. Doyle and Others. I am advised that this Committee will meet as soon as is practicable for it to do so.

Sewage Disposal (Question No. 1138)

Mr Urenasked the Minister representing the Minister for Works, upon notice:

(1) Has the Department of Works studied any overseas schemes for sewage disposal.

(2) If so, is there any possible scheme which would obviate sewage being discharged into the ocean in the Sydney area.

Mr Chipp- The Minister for Works has provided the following answer to the honourable members question:

(1) Yes by overseas visits of its professional staff and from technical reports received.

(2) No study of the question of sewage disposal in Sydney has been made by the Commonwealth Department of Works.

Commonwealth Banking Corporation: Wage Adjustment (Question No. 804)

Mr ClydeCameron asked the Minister for Labour and Nat onal Service, upon notice:

(1) is he able to say what will be the total cost to each of the private banks in Australia in meeting the 12 months retrospective wage adjustments to all female employees following the Commonwealth industrial Court's decision in the recent proceedings against four banks for breach of award.

(2) Has the outcome of this case had any direct or indirect effect upon the cost of female salaries lo the Commonwealth Banking Corporation.

(3) If so. what is that effect.

Mr Snedden- The answer lo the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) No.

(2) and (3) I am informed that as the Commonwealth Banking Corporation is not respondent to die Bank Officials' (Federal) Award, the outcome of the proceedings before the Commonwealth Industrial Court had no direct effect upon the cost of salaries of females employed by the Corporation.

As to the indirect effect I am advised that, as part of the process of identifying job classifications attracting equal pay, the Corporation takes note of the effect of relevant equal pay decisions, especially those occurring within the banking industry. Regard also is paid to the principles laid down by the Conciliation and Arbitration Commission in the Equal Pay Case.

Apprenticeship Allowances (Question No. 945)

DrEveringham asked the Minister for Labour and National Service, upon notice:

(1) Will he investigate whether David John Stevenson of Box 272, Biloela, and others have been denied apprenticeship allowances in Brisbane although their chosen trade is .not taking apprentices in centres closer to their homes.

(2) Will he review country apprenticeship allowances to assist apprentices from the country in such circumstances.

Mr Snedden- The answer to the honourable members question is as follows:

(1) and (2) No eligible apprentice has been denied a living-away-from-home allowance under the Country Apprentice Scheme. The purpose of the Scheme is to encourage country lads to stay in the country to accept apprenticeship opportunities and so contribute to die skilled workforce there. To this end, it provides for a livingawayfromhome allowance to country lads moving from one country town to another; the Scheme is limited to apprenticeships in the proclaimed metal, electrical, vehicle, aircraft, building and printing trades. There is only one exception to the foregoing. This is the admission to the Scheme of a country lad who, as a result of action by the Commonweath Employment Service, is placed in an apprenticeship in a metropolitan area because there is a shortage of opportunities in the country 'in the trade concerned and a shortage of suitable lads in the metropolitan area. The job placement must have been made through the Commonwealth Employment Service because the latter is required to -satisfy itself that the country lad has not been offered the job and allowance at the expense of a metropolitan lad also available; in other words, to satisfy itself that there is a shortage of qualified lads in the metropolitan area. This exception was accepted in 1.968 so that metropolitan apprenticeships could be offered to country lads willing to help overcome a shortage of lads in the metropolitan area.

Country lads moving on their own initiative to metropolitan areas to compete for available employment opportunities are not eligible for livingawayfromhome allowances under any Commonwealth Scheme.

At the time David John Stevenson obtained an apprenticeship on his own initiative, there was no shortage of metropolitan lads for apprenticeships in the trade in which he was apprenticed.

Papua and New Guinea: Pearl Culture (Question No. 1068)

Mr Whitiamasked the Minister for External Territories, upon notice:

(1) Where, for how long and by whom- has pearl culture been developed in the Territory of Papua and New Guinea.

(2) In what aspects and to what extent do indigenes participate in the industry.

Mr Barnes- The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(2) At both Fairfax Harbour and Samarai indigenes have received useful instruction in assembling wire baskets, cleaning baskets and shells, making rafts and rotating and opening the oysters. About 55 indigenes are employed by Pearls Pty Ltd and key personnel are 8 Japanese technicians, 7 of whom are qualified marine biologists while one is a marine engineer. Papuans and New Guineans suitably trained in marine biology are not yet available to be employed in the more highly specialised techniques. About 3 indigenes are employed by" Mr C. D. George who' is very experienced in pearl- culture operating techniques and is assisted by a marine biologist.

Papua and New Guinea: Punishment of Prisoners (Question No. 1016)

Mr ClydeCameron asked the Minister for External Territories, upon notice: . .

(1) What was the penalty imposed by the Supreme Court of the Territory of Papua and New Guinea upon the four expatriates who were found guilty of unlawful killing.

(2) What was the penalty' imposed by the Supreme Court of the Territory of Papua and New Guinea upon the expatriate who, in each case, was found guilty of (a) manslaughter, (b) assault, (c) attempting unlawfully to kill, and (d) rape.

(3) Did the Court recording the conviction against the foregoing expatriates make an order to suppress each or any of the names of the persons so convicted.

Mr Barnes- The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Of the four persons said in the answer to Question No. 820 (Hansard, 8th May, 1970, page 1941) to have been convicted of unlawful killing one has been found to be an indigenous person with a European name, and not an expatriate. The pentlties imposed on the other three persons were as follows:

(1) Imprisonment with hard labour for 2 years;

(ii) Imprisonment with hard labour for 1 year;

(iii) Imprisonment with hard labour for 6 months (the precise description of the offence for which the expatriate was convicted in this case was dangerous driving causing death).

(2) (a) (i) Imprisonment with hard labour for 3 years.

(ii) Imprisonment with' hard labour for 3 years.

(b) (i) Fined SI 00.

(ii) Fined $100.

(iii) Sentence of imprisonment with hard labour for 3 months suspended on his entering into a $200 bond to be of good behaviour for 1 year.

(iv) Released on entering into a bond of $10 to be of good behaviour for 2 years.

(v) Released on entering into a bond of $10 to be of good behaviour for 1 year.

(c) Released on entering into a bond of $500 to be of good behaviour for 3 years. (The person was not convicted of attempting unlawfully to kill but of the lesser- offence of unlawful wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm).

(d) Imprisonment with hard labour for 3 months. (The person was actually con victed of the offence of indecently dealing with a girl under the age of 17 years).

International Labour Organisation Conventions (Question No. 1005)

Mr ClydeCameron asked the Minister for Labour and National Service, upon notice:

(1) With which States of the Commonwealth have consultations taken place in respect of

International Labour Organisation Conventions Nos 32, 52, 58, 62, 81, 92, 98, 101, 112 and 113.

(2) On how many occasions has the Commonwealth consulted each of the States with respect to each of the foregoing Conventions.

(3) Which of the States has refused to consent to the ratification of each of these Conventions.

Mr Snedden- The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) and (2) All Stales have been consulted about each of the Conventions listed by the honourable member. There is continuing correspondence, etc. with the States concerning unratified Conventions which deal with matters within their jurisdiction and where ratification cannot proceed on the basis of Commonwealth action alone. Each of the Conventions listed has been examined at meetings of the Departments of Labour Advisory Committee.

(3) The States which I am advised have not yet agreed to ratification of the Conventions listed by the honourable member are detailed below. Considerations which can preclude ratification of particular Conventions are discussed on page 8 of the Review of Australian Law and Practice relating to Conventions Adopted by the International Labour Conference' published by the Department last October.

No. 32 - New South Wales, South Australia and Tasmania.

No. 52 - New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania.

No. 58- New South Wales.

No. 62 - Queensland, Victoria. The Commonwealth is at present consulting with the other States concerning a possible impediment which has prevented these two States from agreeing to ratification.

No. 81 - The Convention is not fully complied with in any State.

No. 92- New South Wales. No. 98- New South Wales, Queensland, South

Australia.

No. 101- New South Wales, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania.

No. 112 - South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania.

No. 113 - No State has agreed lo ratification.

International Labour Conference: Adoption (Question No. 1007)

Mr ClydeCameron asked the Minister for Labour and National Service, upon notice:

(1) Does his Department's publication 'Review of Australian Law and Practice Relating to Conventions adopted by the International Labour Conference' state that the International Labour Organisation Conventions Nos 2, 97 and 118 are exclusively within Commonwealth' jurisdiction.

(2) If so, in the light of his reply to the first paragraph of my question No. 583, is this statement inaccurate.

(3) If the information is inaccurate, will he now have the publication reviewed and issue a statement outlining any further inaccuracies contained in it.

Mr Snedden- The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Conventions Nos 2, 97 and 118 deal with matters which are, to a very limited extent, within the legislative competence of the States and they cannot, therefore, be said to be exclusively within Commonwealth jurisdiction. At the same time the Commonwealth considers that ratification of these Conventions can proceed on the basis of Commonwealth action alone.

The statement on page 9 of the 'Review of Australian Law and Practice relating to Conventions adopted by the International Labour Conference', to which the honourable member is doubtless referring, relates to ratification.

The detailed position in relation to the subjectmatter of the Conventions- is set out under the individual Convention headings.

(2) and (3) See answer to (1) above.







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