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Wednesday, 24 August 1994
Page: 196

Senator BOLKUS (Minister for Immigration and Ethnic Affairs and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Multicultural Affairs) (12.17 p.m.) —We oppose this amendment for two reasons. I understand what Senator Spindler wants to do, but if we were to accept his amendment No. 8 we would go a long way towards unintentionally destroying the integrity of the program, because the words in the amendment will allow all or part of the MOU to be produced in court. If all or part of the MOU were produced, the person may in fact be required to be given another new identity.

  Having recognised that unintended consequence, let me point Senator Spindler to government amendment No. 4 which I think goes a long way towards meeting some of the concerns that he has, although at the same time protecting the location, safety or identity of the participants. Those are the reasons why we do not accept amendment No. 8.

Senator Spindler —Would the minister agree to take on board the substance of the problem? I believe what he has said does not fully answer our concerns. He may wish to ensure that this matter is addressed in the future.

Senator BOLKUS —I can take that on board, refer it to the minister and ask him to give Senator Spindler a considered reply further down the track.