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Monday, 20 March 2017
Page: 1312


Senator RICE (Victoria) (10:42): The Greens are also opposed to Senator Roberts's amendments. We completely reject the hurtful, hateful racism and Islamophobia contained within the proposed amendments. We know that the so-called Christian Aussie that Senator Roberts referred to as being less likely to be a terrorist is in fact just as likely to be a terrorist as any other race of people in Australia. As the Prime Minister has reinforced today, we live in the most successful multicultural nation in the world. The reason we are the most successful multicultural nation is that we respect and celebrate difference and we know that people, regardless of their background and race, are free to be law-abiding Australian citizens.

If Senator Roberts's amendments were successful, everyone of Muslim background would be much more likely to be screened, regardless of there being no justification for that. We know that it would mean that people would be feeling that division. We know what breeds hatred in our community, and it is the racist, hateful and hurtful positions of One Nation. That is what is breeding hatred. It is, in fact, what is breeding unlawful activity in our community. We know that treating everyone equally, regardless of their background, and encouraging and supporting their sense of being valued by all Australians is what will keep us safe.

The Greens want to send the message to people from all backgrounds in Australia that we consider Australians all equal here. We want to keep everybody safe and we know the way to do that is to treat everybody equally. In measures like this, where we are concerned about the safety of Australians, every Australian has the right to be treated the same and treated as equally as other Australians.