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Thursday, 25 October 1973
Page: 1487

Senator GREENWOOD (Victoria) - I acknowledge, from what the Democratic Labor Party has said, that the Opposition will not succeed in this amendment, but I think it is proper to say that the Opposition views with concern clause 54. 1 was interested to hear Senator James McClelland quote what Mr Menzies said almost 40 years ago. I think the honourable senator should have completed the pattern by indicating that it was a government headed by Mr Menzies in 1952 which removed from the Act the provision which had been introduced in 1934. The present section does not give the power of appointment to the Minister for Labour. The clause seeks to give to the Minister the power of appointment of what he might call trouble shooters, what Senator Murphy might call advisers, and what the Prime Minister (Mr Whitlam) and other members of the Government might call by various other names. It is a pattern which we are seeing develop. I am not in the habit of prophesying, but I fear the consequences of this on the structure of industry in the country. . .

We have been long served by the Public Service structure, which has its problems. We have always to be on the alert to ensure that those problems do not reduce the effectiveness of the Public Service and its acceptance in the public eye. It has tremendous advantages because a code of conduct has been built up in the Service. I think it is a disadvantageous step for the Minister to be able to pick whomever he pleases to move into this controversial area. I am merely explaining, in possibly greater justification than Senator Wright stated when he moved the amendment, the Opposition's view. We acknowledge that the amendment will not be carried. Naturally, we will not divide on the issue which will be put to the vote shortly.

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