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Friday, 25 November 2011
Page: 9699

Senator HANSON-YOUNG (South Australia) (15:44): Here we have it. The government is not serious about this issue. They are not doing anything that actually addresses this issue, because the whole point of the case before the Victorian courts is the farce of the mandatory sentencing regime. Until the government can see that and moves to address it, these issues are not going to go away. This bill does nothing to address those issues. This bill does nothing to deter people smuggling. This is all so that the government can get out of here today and say, 'We did something to smash the people-smuggling business model', when you have actually done nothing at all.

What about the children who are being held in Australian jails? What is the minister and the government doing to address that issue? Again, we know that these young people are being held in Australian detention facilities, Australian jails, despite the facts that they are not 18 years old and there is no conclusive evidence that the government is able to even charge them. At the end of the day, the courts are going to find that they are not adults and send them home. How much money out of the public purse is being spent because the government will not tackle these issues properly because they are all about spin, they are all about smokescreens, they are all about slogans and they are nothing about substance? What is the minister doing to address the issue of children being detained in Australian jails?