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Tuesday, 15 December 1992
Page: 5107


Senator McKIERNAN (1.34 a.m.) —I want to make a few remarks about the amendments and endorse the comments the Minister for Industrial Relations (Senator Cook) made just a short time ago. This matter has been the subject of debate within the Australian Labor Party for a considerable number of years. The Minister has indicated the efforts the Government has made in order to get a proper measure of legislation to govern the impacts of industrial disputes and secondary disputes. Those efforts were tried in 1984 and failed. The Minister went on to indicate that the matter was referred to the Senate Standing Committee on Employment, Education and Training some two months ago. I am not exactly sure what that Committee has engaged in so far. It has had the reference for two months. I hope the Committee will expedite the inquiry and that when Labor is returned to the treasury bench following the next Federal election the Committee, after giving due consideration to the reference points in front of it, after listening to the evidence from employer groups, trade unions, workers, greens and independents, and the range of the community, will bring forward a recommendation. I hope the newly elected fifth term Labor Government will act immediately to implement moves to remove sections 45D and 45E from the industrial relations arena.