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Thursday, 9 February 2017
Page: 453


Senator O'NEILL (New South Wales) (12:43): I seek leave to amend general business notice of motion No. 186, standing in my name for today, relating to the presentation of annual reports concerning the Closing the Gap initiative.

Leave granted.

Senator O'NEILL: I move the motion as amended:

That the Senate—

(a) notes the national framework agreed to by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) in 2008 to tackle Indigenous disadvantage and the six priority areas for change identified by COAG;

(b) further notes that reports are presented by the Prime Minister to the Australian Parliament annually on progress in meeting these 'Closing the Gap' targets, along with a response by the Leader of the Opposition;

(c) is of the view that the presentation of these annual reports should be marked by a special parliamentary procedure in recognition of the significance of these initiatives to all Australians;

(d) therefore proposes to the House of Representatives that it consider marking the presentation of the Prime Minister's annual report on 'Closing the Gap' by:

   (i) hosting a meeting of the House to which senators are invited, and

   (ii) inviting senior Indigenous leaders to be present when the Prime Minister's annual report is presented; and

(e) resolves that, on its presentation to the Senate, the Prime Minister's annual report on 'Closing the Gap' and accompanying ministerial statement be listed for consideration as a government business order of the day, and that the Government undertake to provide for at least 2 hours consideration of the statement during government business time, not more than eight sitting days following the presentation of the report to the Senate.

(2) This order have continuing effect.