PM Transcripts

Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 2402


Photo of McMahon, William

McMahon, William

Period of Service: 10/03/1971 to 05/12/1972

More information about McMahon, William on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 08/04/1971

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 2402

FOR PRESS: PM No. 44/ 1971
Following a meeting today in the Premier's Office between the Prime
Minister ( Mr. M cMahon) and the Minister administering the Department
of the Vice President of the Executive Council ( Sir Alan Hulme) representing
the Commonwealth and the Premier ( Mr. Bjelke-Petersen) and the Treasurer
( Mr. Gordon Chalk) representing Queensland, agreement was reached about
the unresolved issues relating to integration of aboriginals into the Australian
community difficulties which might possibly have required legislation by
the Commonwealth. The Prime Minister came to Queensland at the invitation of the Premier
and said his visit provided an early opportunity to seek to resolve the unsettled
issues. In a joint statement issued following the meeting, Mr. McMahon and
Mr. Bjelke-Petersen said
" We now have a full appreciation of each Government's
problems and we discussed the various matters needing
resolution." Mr. McMahon outlined those in which the Commonwealth was especially
interested and Mr. Bjelke-Petersen indicated proposals which his Government
was ready to make.
After discussion, arrangements acceptable to the State and in accord with
the principles and objectives of the Commronwealth were agreed to.
Broadly, the matters considered encompassed questions relating to
Freedom of movement off Reserves;
Control, through Reserve Councils, of access to Reserves;
Control of property freedom of choice will be allowed but
with provision for consultation with the Council and/ or the
Administration as a safeguard against exploitation;
Control of transactions arrangements as in the case
of control of property;
Liquor Canteen System freedom of choice to Reserve
residents to decide whether or not liquor will be permitted
on a particular Reserve. e / 2

Torres Strait Islanders a separate Act of Parliament;
Vagrancy Laws : Paragraph ( ii) of Section 4( l) of the
Vagrants, Gaming and Other Offences Act will be
repealed; Wage Rates special consideration will be given to
inexperienced, slow or retarded aboriginal workers;
Reserve Councils native representation will be
Full details will be spelt out later.
It was recognised that the existing Queensland legislation was designed
to assist in protecting persons who, without guidance and assistance, could
be subject to exploitation and that it was not, therefore, to be seen as
discrimination against aboriginals.
But both the Prime Minister and the Premier indicated that there
was a willingness on the part of both Governments to do all that was possible
to meet the desires of the aboriginal people.
Mr. Bjelke-Petersen added that he was now in a position to confirm to
his Minister in charge of Aboriginal Affairs the general lines already laid
down for the preparation of draft legislation to be introduced at the next
Session of the Queensland ParliamEnt.
BRISBANE 8 April 1971

Transcript 2402