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Tuesday, 29 October 1974
Page: 2029

The PRESIDENT -Is leave granted? There being no dissent, leave is granted.

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for the Media) - In tabling this document I want to emphasise, as I have emphasised in the foreword to this document, that it is not intended that this document should be taken as a statement of the Government's views on access to the media. This is, I emphasise, a discussion paper intended to stimulate the flow of information within the Australian community, including people involved in Government and broadcasting. It does not insist on any particular solution to the problems involved in the relationships between the public and the media. Instead it attempts simply to summarise the results of some of the work done so far in gathering together information about possible solutions.

I suggest to honourable senators who are interested in this field that they will find the report informative and stimulating, and I extend an invitation to all interested people or groups to approach my Department with any suggestions for the development of public access, accountability and participation in the media.

I congratulate the officers of my Department for the thoroughness of their research work to date. I suggest that the critics, after reading this report, w3l be able to agree that there is much more work involved in access broadcasting than that which initially meets the eye, and I trust that the tabling of this discussion paper in the Senate will dispel for all time the idea that some persons attempt to moot abroad that the Department of the Media is not interested in public broadcasting. Nothing could be further from the truth.

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