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Thursday, 20 April 1972
Page: 1308

Senator COTTON (New South WalesMinister for Civil Aviation) - I wish to clear up the points raised by Senator Bishop. I understand that proposed new section 12b is not objectionable in any sense. Senator Bishop directed himself to proposed new section 12c. Clause 4 is quite a long one. Am I to accept the fact that we are to begin with proposed new section 12c?

Senator Bishop - That is my first query.

Senator COTTON - Section 28 (3.) of the Conciliation and Arbitration Act is in rather similar terms to this proposed new section. Section 28 (3.) reads:

A Minister who is aware of the existence of an industrial dispute or of an industrial situation which is likely to give rise to an industrial dispute may notify a Commissioner or the Registrar accordingly.

The information I have on proposed new section 12c is as follows: Sub-section (l.) gives power to a Minister, the Public Service Board, a Commonwealth authority or an organisation to notify the Arbitrator in writing of an industrial situation that exists or is likely to occur and to make application to him to use the powers given to him under these new provisions. The application may simply ask the Arbitrator to call a conference to consider the matter or it may ask for some specific remedy. It should be noted that an application for a specific remedy does not have to be made at the same time as the notice of the industrial situation is given but can be made at a subsequent time - for example, during the hearing of the matter.. Proposed new section 12c (2.) provides that once a notice is given to the Arbitrator he shall send a copy of that notice to either parties concerned or affected or parties who are likely to be concerned or affected by the industrial situation. The object of this is to ensure that all parties are aware of the notification and to clear the way for an immediate hearing of the matter. So the reference to a Minister in the Bill is the same as the reference to a Minister in the principal Act.

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