The West Australian, Fri 03 Nov 1972, p3

Do not lift scientology ban, says Dr Ellis

The State Government's decision to repeal legislation banning the practice of scientology in W.A. was made against the advice of the Director of Mental Health, Dr A. E. Ellis.

In February, Dr Ellis sent a memorandum to the Minister for Health, Mr Davies, saying he believed that it would be very much against the public interest to repeal the act banning the practice.

In the memorandum, Dr Ellis said he thought that the evidence collected indicated that scientology was a danger to public health.

Mr Davies tabled a copy of the memorandum in the Legislative Assembly yesterday at the request of Mr A. Mensaros (Lib., Floreat).

The Premier, Mr Tonkin, has told the Assembly that legislation to repeal the Act banning scientology will be introduced before the end of the current session of State Parliament.

Dr Ellis says in the memorandum that the action of the previous Minister for Health, Mr MacKinnon, in banning scientology had been based on recommendations from the State Health Council.

The council consisted of 16 W.A. leaders of the medical profession.

The recommendation to outlaw scientology had been unanimous and had been taken after consideration of a report from the mental health committee.


The committee had considered scientology to be a medical, moral and social danger and a threat to family and home life.

It was true that no-one was forced into scientology, but it attracted the ignorant, weak, credulous and emotionally unstable and once contact was made such people found it very difficult to break away from the cult because of the insidious pressurising techniques it used.

The Deputy Commissioner of Police of the day had also told Mr MacKinnon that from his knowledge of the organisation he was wholeheartedly and unreservedly in favour of its being outlawed.

Dr Ellis told Mr Davies that if he read an extract from a scientology publication setting out some of the claims of the organisation that was on file at the Public Health Department, he would agree that it was arrogant and ridiculous nonsense calculated to appeal to the uneducated, unsophisticated and mentally disturbed.