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Thursday, 9 March 1972
Page: 641

Senator GREENWOOD (VictoriaAttorneyGeneral) - I am more than willing to comment on Senator Byrne's suggestions. In the first place I think Senator Byrne has posed something which the Government could do if it had the time and the resources which, believe me, it has not. My second reading speech was as long as it was because it was felt that it would be of assistance. Whilst it did not elaborate philosophic concepts it did indicate the changing patterns, the changing standards, and how from the idea of the sancitity of marriage as a prime consideration we are now moving to an area in which pursuit to truth and doing justice are the primary considerations. I would be quite happy, if it is agreeable to Senator Byrne, if this clause were stood over to allow further consideration to be given to it. 1 appreciate that he is in the position that he is not happy with the. existing clause. I think that, having regard to the way in which he spoke, he would be even less happy with the amendment. I think he would be looking to see whether another provision would meet his requirements. If he could come up with another provision which would meet his objection it may be that that would meet both Senator Murphy's consideration and mine. We could deliberate on it in some. way. If that is Senator Byrne's wish, I will not oppose it.

I raise this matter for the consideration of the Committee. I think that if the Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs were able to bestir itself a lot of these matters could readily be referred to it. If it were to utilise part of next week to examine in some depth matters which are of particular concern to the lawyers - which matters do not concern other members of the Senate in nearly the same way - it would be able to work at its own leisure and in its own way and provide a practical solution to the problems. I know it would mean all the lawyers getting together and talking about these matters.

Senator Brown - Would you agree?

Senator GREENWOOD - I agree that my suggestion is one of the possible solutions. I put the suggestion to see what comment might come from the Committee. The matter would have to be dealt with reasonably expeditiously because of the time, limit involved.

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