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Thursday, 20 September 1973
Page: 1393


Mr DOYLE (Olley) - I support clause 6 of the Bill. I support it because it is clear cut and easy to interpret and because I believe that the position of an employer is fully covered. If we turn to paragraph (a)-- that is the provision which the Opposition apparently seeks to have omitted from the clause - and if we then look at the amendment put forward by the Opposition we see, I believe, that it is open to all kinds of interpretations. Somebody suggested that the Opposition's amendment might even have been framed by a lawyer. I go a little further and say that it probably was framed by a lawyer who practices in industrial law. Any person who has had any experience at all of industrial affairs will know that the insertion of the words 'which is lawful' into a section of an industrial Act takes away the right of union officials to exercise their proper capacity of entering premises or going on to a job and looking after the interests of the people whom they represent.

I have listened to the Opposition this evening. I thought earlier that Opposition members might have been sincere. They stated that they wished to have this Bill dealt with within the time that has been allotted for its debate. It seems to me that they are marking time. We heard statements made today concerning attitudes that were related to people who wore jackboots. In his concluding remarks, the Deputy Leader of the Opposition (Mr Lynch) indicated quite clearly, I think, that no matter what the majority of members of this Committee desire the way of reform in this legislation, this genuine attempt to bring about decent reform in the industrial relations field will be cast aside by the weight of numbers in the other place.

Opposition member's seem to believe that every move by this Government and by Labor people on behalf of trade unions is made with some ulterior motive and to gain some advantage. They forget that a little more than 12 months ago a very prominent member of the then Government suggested that that Government might call in foreign companies to try to act against the trade union movement in this country as a means of depriving unions of the 35-hour week that they sought. When honourable members opposite are in government they act in one way; when they are in opposition and a proposal is put forward by a Labor government they believe that we do so for ulterior motives.

For 23 years Australia had a government that failed, and failed dismally, in the field of industrial relations and industrial affairs. Honourable members opposite this evening have offered the Government a series of items of advice. But this advice comes from failures in the industrial field. I certainly support this clause in the Bill introduced by the Minister for Labour. I believe that acceptance of this provision will lead to sanity in the industrial field and, I hope, peace in industry generally.







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