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Thursday, 21 November 1974
Page: 2646

Senator LAUCKE (South Australia) -I strongly support the amendment moved by Senator Sir Kenneth Anderson for the inclusion of the definition of marriage which appears in the Marriage Act of 1 96 1 . 1 concede the legal expressions in regard to the possible need for including the words 'subject to the provisions of this or any other Act'. It is fundamental, in my opinion, to retain that which by common law concept the Australian community has adopted throughout our history- that marriage is, as set out in this definition, 'the union of a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others voluntarily entered into for life'. It has been accepted as being not inconsistent with the position of marriage that it may be terminated on certain specific grounds. If this definition is not clearly stated in this legislation marriage may well be defined as the union of one man with one wife until they have separated for 12 months and one has thereupon been divorced. Again I stress that in my view this is basic to the whole structure of society as we have known it in Australia. This definition should be brought into this Bill, subject, as I have said, to the legal requirements suggested by Senator Durack and Senator Missen. I trust that Senator Sir Kenneth Anderson will accede to the suggestion that those words be added to the amendment and the amendment will be included in this legislation.

Senator Sir KENNETHANDERSON (New South Wales) (2.23)- I am perfectly willing to alter my amendment to insert the words 'subject to the provisions of this or any other Act' and to delete the words ' according to law in Australia '.

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