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Friday, 18 November 1938

Mr MAKIN (Hindmarsh) .- It has come to my notice that several employees of the Postal Department in South Australia have been offered the honour of appointment as Commissioners of the Peace, but, because the Department will give only a qualified permission for them to accept the honour, they are prevented from accepting it. I have one case especially in mind, and I shall supply the Postmaster-General (Mr. Archie Cameron) with all the particulars. For the present the Postal Department is prepared to allow its employees to accept Commissions of the Peace, but only if they are not called upon to perform court duties. That qualification is fatal to approval being given to appointments by the Attorney-General of the State. I feel that those in charge of the administration of justice in South Australia would not require officers to* undertake services in any way that would inconvenience the department. I myself have held for almost twenty years a Commission of the Peace in South Australia, but, undoubtedly because of the public office that I hold, T have never been called upon to undertake court work.

The man I have particularly in mind figures prominently in the municipal life of the suburb of Adelaide in which he lives. He is a reputable citizen, and if he were appointed a justice of the peace, as an employee in the mail branch of the Postal Department he would* be able to perform a useful service in the department by signing documents and performing other little services that Justices of the Peace are called upon to perform. If private employers are ready to allow their employees to hold a Commission of the Peace, Government departments should be equally ready to do so. The department's attitude is indefensible, and I ask the Postmaster-General to take up the subject with his Deputy Director in Adelaide.

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