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Thursday, 23 March 1972
Page: 863

Senator BYRNE (Queensland) - Perhaps 'he few remarks that 1 propose to make should have been made in the debate on the second reading, but I was not here. I merely say that last week the AttorneyGeneral (Senator Greenwood) was in Brisbane where he was to meet with practising members of the Queensland Bar. He did this and very valuable consultations took place. Those distinguished gentlemen raised matters which indicated a concern as to the contents of the Bill. They welcomed the proposal which the Attorney has now placed before this chamber that the Bill should be referred to the Standing Committee on Constitutional and Legal Affairs. I do not believe that the reference should be in any particular formal sense; it should be rather to give the committee an opportunity to consult - nor to call evidence or interrogate witnesses - the learned gentlemen who propounded the report from which the evidence code emerges. It would have the opportunity also to consult members of the private Bar and of the Law Councils of Australia. This could be fruitful and it is a very sane and wise way to approach this important matter. What happens here could become an evidentiary code for the whole of Australia, including the States. Therefore it is vital that it be considered now in 'he best atmosphere possible and given the greatest possible examination. I welcome the approach now proposed by the Attorney-General.

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