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Wednesday, 1 December 2004
Page: 5


Senator BROWN (9:42 AM) —What is not in the annual report, I will guarantee, is the criteria used for vetting Australian lawyers who want to represent clients before the court. I asked the minister: what are those criteria? I ask for the third or fourth time: what are those criteria? Because the government is turning down the recommendations of the Senate's own inquiry, by refusing the Greens' amendments, how will the minister assure the chamber that the Australian Security Vetting Service will not become anything other than a political weapon to use against lawyers whom the government does not think are fit to appear before a court? What assurance is there? What openness, what scrutiny, for example, does the Senate have of the Australian Security Vetting Service? Where is the responsibility and openness of this service? Can the minister tell the committee: who heads up this service?