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Wednesday, 21 March 2012
Page: 3815


Mrs BRONWYN BISHOP (Mackellar) (18:24): In another chamber earlier today we had a similar situation where the minister was not able to answer any of my questions.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The member for Mackellar must realise that this is not question time. We have had this debate before and there is no need for the minister to respond. This is consideration in detail. You can put the question but this is not question time.

Mr Albanese: There was an agreement.

Mrs BRONWYN BISHOP: I had no agreement.

Mr Albanese: The opposition whip did.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The member for Mackellar has the call. The Leader of the House is not assisting.

Mrs BRONWYN BISHOP: During the scrutiny that took place when the bill was referred to the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, it was pointed out that there was no provision in the legislation for the privacy of individuals to be protected. Under the current law, if someone has an appropriate reason to be left off the electoral roll and they make a submission to the Electoral Commissioner, they are entitled not to be put on the roll. It could be because of domestic violence; it could be for a whole range of issues. Yet under this legislation someone who is in that position who has not had the opportunity to request that they be omitted from the roll can be automatically placed on the roll. That evidence was given and I ask the minister why no amendment was brought in to protect the rights of those individuals.

The SPEAKER: The question is that the bill be agreed to.