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21    Law and Justice—Protection of Northern Coastline

Senator Lazarus, pursuant to notice of motion not objected to as a formal motion, moved general business notice of motion no. 987—That the Senate—

    (a)   recognises the important work of the Australian Federal Police, the Queensland Police Service, Australian Border Force and other government agencies in protecting Australia’s northern coastline, borders and communities;

    (b)   acknowledges the growing need to increase Australia’s policing capacity in, and monitoring of, our northern waters in view of:

                  (i)   the strategic importance of the region,

                 (ii)   its proximity to the Papua New Guinea coastline,

                (iii)   the large area to cover and growing number of incidents, for example, authorities monitor an estimated 250 000 boat trips per year and conducted 68 search and rescue operations in 2014, and

                (iv)   the need for nearby communities to feel safe;

     (c)   notes the Queensland State Government and the Queensland Police Union’s calls for the Federal Government to help fund the build of a multi-jurisdictional government facility, Australia’s northernmost police station, on Sabai Island, located in the Torres Strait of Queensland, to service the northern region; and

    (d)   calls on the Federal Government to consider contributing to the funding of the facility, to increase Australia’s police presence and border protection and management activities in the northern region.

Question put and passed.