Senate debates

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Paid Parental Leave Bill 2010; Paid Parental Leave (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2010

In Committee

11:20 am

Photo of Chris EvansChris Evans (WA, Australian Labor Party, Leader of the Government in the Senate) Share this | Hansard source

I understand the point you are trying to make. We argue that the legal meaning is that contained in the clause. You raise concerns about whether or not the heading accurately reflects the full policy intent. I guess I regard that as a bit of an argument on semantics. We do not think anything turns on it. The legal meaning is reflected in the clause. I think it is fair to say that most people will get information about their obligations through publications from the department, information sheets and advice from both government and industry bodies where the language will probably be more user-friendly and designed to make clear what the implication of the policy is. You, Senator, and a few others interested in industrial law will be a small group who will come to terms with the detail of the legislation. I must admit that it is more than 20 years since I have grappled with industrial law, so I do not pretend any great expertise any longer. But we think the legal effect is in the clause. We think it properly reflects the government’s policy intention. We think this amendment achieves what we intend for it to achieve.


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