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Friday, 15 November 2002
Page: 6535


Senator ABETZ (Special Minister of State) (2:44 PM) —I can understand what Senator Murray's comments were related to but, as I pointed out, 600 people per annum indicate that their bankruptcy was caused by gambling, yet only one person per annum is in fact prosecuted under the `rash and hazardous' provisions. So that is a very small, minute, number. But more importantly, it has become a very effective device for those administering bankruptcy to retrieve money from those who assert that the moneys, or a certain amount of the moneys, were lost by one last throw of the dice at the casino: when confronted with this provision, all of a sudden the person admits that the money is in fact squirrelled away, because they do not want to face the prosecution. That is the practical application of this. The Democrats and the Labor Party are opposed to it. I agree with Senator Ludwig that the unemployed are some of the most vulnerable in the community. Because we are a caring government, we have in fact created one million jobs since we have come to government.

Question agreed to.