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Wednesday, 17 September 1958

Mr DOWNER (Angas) (Minister for Immigration) . - I think that the committee will agree that clause 19 is quite a useful clause. It has been designed solely to facilitate cases where a wife wishes to accompany her husband. So far as I am aware, a case has never arisen where it has been found necessary, or it has been desired, to- deport a wife rather than her husband. It is conceivable that when a man has committed a crime or comes within the scope of the legislation requiring his deportation, for humanitarian and family reasons his wife and children should accompany him. They may wish to do so, on the principle that the more that families are kept together the better it must be for them. That is why we have inserted a provision of this nature. I am told that these cases do not arise very frequently. As the honorable gentleman will notice, the Minister is given a discretion, but a discretion only, in the exercise of these powers. So he will judge each case on its merits, and if he feels that it is necessary, in the interests of the family, that wife and children should accompany a deportee, this provision will give him the power; having looked at all the circumstances, to make an order.

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