Post Boilermakers 1956-1973
1904-1956 Commonwealth Court of Conciliation and Arbitration
Members of the Commission c1956–1963
The legislation underpinning the new Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Commission, enacted in 1956, emphasised the important role of conciliation in resolving industrial disputes. The first President of the Commission, Justice Richard Kirby, highlighted the role in his first annual report to Parliament:
'The Commission whether constituted by a full bench or a single member is constantly alert to the advantages of disputes being settled by conciliation and there are few matters which come on for hearing and decision by arbitration in which conferences of parties have not first been held.'
In 1972 a number of changes were made to the structure and operation of the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Commission.
- creation of a panel system whereby the work of the Commission was grouped into panels of members each assigned a number of industries
- standardisation of Full Bench composition
- alteration of qualifications for Deputy President leaving the President as the only member required to be legally qualified
- abolition of the positions of Senior Commissioner and Conciliator.
In 1973 the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Commission was renamed the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration Commission and in 1977 the Commonwealth Industrial Court became the Industrial Division of the newly established Federal Court of Australia.