Type of entity
Legal Status Text
Authorized form of name
Other form(s) of name
Dates of existence
On 29 November 1973, a Bill was introduced into the Legislative Assembly to amend those sections of the Criminal Code relating to homosexual acts. The Bill was subsequently passed by the Assembly, and transmitted to the Legislative Council on 5 December 1973. The Legislative Council agreed to a motion to refer the Criminal Code Amendment Bill to a Select Committee.
The members of the Select Committee were the Honourables R.J.L. Williams M.L.C., V.J. Ferry M.L.C., N.E.Baxter M.L.C., C.J. Jamieson M.L.A. (Minister for Works), and I.D. Thompson M.L.A. and M.J. Bryce M.L.A.
The Select Committee held their initial meeting on 19 December 1973. In view of the proximity of State elections at that time, the Committee was converted to a Royal Commission on 16 January 1974. The members of the Committee remained as Royal Commissioners although the Hon. N.E. Baxter resigned as Commissioner on 8 May 1974 due to Ministerial responsibilities and was not replaced.
The Royal Commission's terms of reference were:
a) to consider together and to continue inquiries into matters relating to homosexuality commenced as members of the Select Committees respectively appointed by the Legislative Council and the Legislative Assembly;
b) to examine the provisions of sections 181 and 184 of the Criminal Code in relation to i) offences, and ii) punishments, and to make recommendations as to the re-wording in more precise terms of the offences outlined in those sections;
c) to take evidence as to the public attitude towards homosexuals within the State;
d) to inquire into and make recommendations in respect of the prevention of the victimisation of homosexuals;
e) to inquire into and make recommendations in respect of the prevention of the proliferation of homosexuality by the soliciting activities of some homosexuals;
f) to examine whether suitable medical and mental facilities were available within the State to help those homosexuals who have a genuine desire to discontinue their present methods of sexual gratification; and
g) having completed those inquiries, to report in writing thereon.
The Royal Commission's report was completed on 18 September 1974.