Policy: 1970 Brief


CM. 17.6.70.

'That the Secretary write to Mr. Hulme (Postmaster-General) protesting and putting points of view regarding the autonomy of the A.B.C., particularly in relation to current affairs programmes and to his cutting of the budget.'


Report of Sub-Committee, adopted in general by Committee, quoted in Civil Liberty (April 1970):

'The Council for Civil Liberties asserts that a woman has a right to have an abortion, that is, a termination of pregnancy - and that a licensed physician has a right to perform or refuse an abortion without the threat of criminal sanctions.

In pursuit of this right, the Council for Civil Liberties asks that State legislatures amend all laws imposing criminal penalties for abortions performed, for whatever reason, by a licensed physician. The law should allow any woman to ask a doctor to terminate a pregnancy any time up to quickening.

The Council for Civil Liberties holds that every woman, as a matter of her right to the enjoyment of life, liberty and privacy, should be free to determine whether and when to bear children.

The Council for Civil Liberties itself offers no comment on the wisdom or the moral implications of abortion, believing that such judgments belong solely in the province of individual conscience and religion.'


CM. 28.10.70.

'That the Council for Civil Liberties policy is to oppose the introduction of random breath tests. Further resolved that the Council for Civil Liberties has no policy on compulsory seat belts.'


Letter to Minister for Customs (December 1970).

It is a firm policy of this Council to work towards the removal of all forms of censorship, and therefore the following recommendations for providing a more objective basis for the present system do not imply any departure from the Council's established policy.


CM. 16.12.70.

Subsequently, the introduction of an 'R' Certificate was urged.

N.B. In November 1971 an 'R' Certificate was introduced but nevertheless some 'R' Certificated films are still subject to censorship.


CM. 1.7.70.

'That the question of compulsory voting may probably raise an issue of civil liberty, but that no action at this stage is justified.'


Letter to press quoted in Civil Liberty (September 1970).

'The Council for Civil Liberties regards the right to demonstrate and the right to privacy in one's home as important and basic. The Council is of the firm opinion that the right to demonstrate should not be exercised at or in the vicinity of a private home except in exceptional circumstances. The right of privacy should not be used as an excuse to destroy the right to demonstrate.'


CM. 6.5.70.

'That the policy of the Council for Civil Liberties be that sex relations between adults in private shall not be a criminal offence.'


CM. 27.5.70.

'That after consideration of the documentary and other evidence available, the Council for Civil Liberties support in principle the legalisation of the usage of marijuana in Australia subject to certain Government controls, preferably by legislation. That the subcommittee be instructed to seek the assistance and cooperation of a member of the legal panel and an industrial chemist for the purpose of defining suggested controls.'


CM. 25.3.70.

'It is the view of the Council for Civil Liberties that Australian citizens should be issued with a Passport as a right and not as a privilege.'


CM. 6.5.70.

'That the President write to the Premier requesting that police officers wear number plates on their uniforms at all times.'


CM. 18.11.70.

'That the President write to the Sydney Morning Herald complaining about the shortness of time in which this Bill (Summary Offences Act 1970) could be debated, and emphasising the fact that many promises had been made that the Council for Civil Liberties would be given notice of the provisions and an opportunity to express their views.'


CM. 27.5.70.

'That it is the right of the male to have a vasectomy if he so wishes, and that no obstacle be put in the way by the law.'