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Wednesday, 15 February 2017
Page: 989

Domestic and Family Violence


Senator McALLISTER (New South WalesDeputy Opposition Whip in the Senate) (14:56): My question is to the Minister for Women, Senator Cash. I refer to Senator Hanson, who, in her first speech, said that the Family Court system is leading to men murdering women out of—and I quote her directly—'sheer frustration'. Has the minister ever raised with Senator Hanson concerns about the impact of such harmful statements on Australian women?


Senator CASH (Western AustraliaMinister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service, Minister for Employment and Minister for Women) (14:57): I thank the senator for her question. In the first instance, can I state that I think all of us in this chamber would agree that violence against women and children, but also men, is completely, utterly and totally inappropriate. I think we all agree that it is a national priority—it certainly is for this government, but I would hope that it is for any government—to tackle the issue.

In relation to the comments made by Senator Hanson, I have had several discussions with Senator Hanson in relation to a number of issues, but I do not propose to canvass them in this chamber. But I would again say that I would hope that everybody in this chamber takes the issue of reducing violence against women and children seriously.

The PRESIDENT: Senator McAllister, a supplementary question.



Senator McALLISTER (New South WalesDeputy Opposition Whip in the Senate) (14:58): Does the minister agree with the One Nation candidate for Pilbara, David Archibald, who has called for welfare for single mothers to cease, saying they are 'too lazy to attract and hold a mate'?


Senator CASH (Western AustraliaMinister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service, Minister for Employment and Minister for Women) (14:58): The answer is no.

The PRESIDENT: Senator McAllister, a final supplementary question.



Senator McALLISTER (New South WalesDeputy Opposition Whip in the Senate) (14:58): Did the Minister for Women express her views about the damaging statements of Senator Hanson and One Nation's candidate for Pilbara whilst wining and dining Senator Hanson and her chief of staff in order to secure One Nation preferences?


Senator CASH (Western AustraliaMinister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service, Minister for Employment and Minister for Women) (14:59): I actually take the subject of reducing domestic violence very seriously. My views on this subject are well known.

Honourable senators interjecting

The PRESIDENT: Order on both sides! I cannot hear the minister's answer. Minister.

Senator CASH: I will not stand here and—

An honourable senator: It is called belittling.

Senator CASH: exactly—belittle the subject or play petty politics with it. If you choose to, that is your choice.