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Thursday, 20 September 1973
Page: 1391

Mr STREET (Corangamite) - I do not think that this clause should go past the Committee without noting some of the comments made by the honourable member for Melbourne (Mr Innes) and the honourable member for Burke (Mr Keith Johnson). The amendment we propose has 2 main purposes, the first of which relates to an act done by an officer, delegate or member of an organisation being lawful. It is most interesting that the 2 honourable members I have just mentioned took great exception to the suggestion that a union officer, delegate or member should act lawfully. I do not know why they should take offence at that but they did.

The. second objective of the amendment is that whatever they do should be within the limits of authority expressly conferred on them by their own organisation. I do not think the honourable members have done the debate on this Bill and on clause 6 in particular any great service by getting back to the tort provisions It was inherent in what they said that they were getting back to the abolition of the tort provisions. Inherent in that is that what officers, members or delegates do need not be lawful if it is in furtherance of an industrial dispute. If the members of an organisation always act lawfully and within the authority expressly conferred on them by the rules of their own organisation they have absolutely nothing to worry about within the terms of this amendment. That is the point I am trying to get across. It is only if they act unlawfully outside the rules of the authority expressly conferred on them that they have anything to worry about. If they are the lily white characters as portrayed by the honourable member for Burke and the honourable member for Melbourne they have nothing to worry about. I am extremely surprised that the honourable members should have taken exception to this amendment.

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