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AUSTRALIA'S IMMIGRATION DETENTION NETWORK—JOINT SELECT COMMITTEE—APPOINTMENT

A message from the House of Representatives was reported proposing the appointment of a joint select committee, as follows:

 Message no. 173, dated 2 June 2011—Proposed Joint Select Committee on Australia's Immigration Detention Network, and transmitting for the concurrence of the Senate the following resolution:

 That:

  (1) a Joint Select Committee on Australia's Immigration Detention Network be appointed to inquire into and report on:

   (a) any reforms needed to the current Immigration Detention Network in Australia;

   (b) the impact of length of detention and the appropriateness of facilities and services for asylum seekers;

   (c) the resources, support and training for employees of Commonwealth agencies and/or their agents or contractors in performing their duties;

   (d) the health, safety and wellbeing of asylum seekers, including specifically children, detained within the detention network;

   (e) impact of detention on children and families, and viable alternatives;


   (f) the effectiveness and long-term viability of outsourcing immigration detention centre contracts to private providers;

   (g) the impact, effectiveness and cost of mandatory detention and any alternatives, including community release;

   (h) the reasons for and nature of riots and disturbances in detention facilities;

   (i) the performance and management of Commonwealth agencies and/or their agents or contractors in discharging their responsibilities associated with the detention and processing of irregular maritime arrivals or other persons;

   (j) the health, safety and wellbeing of employees of Commonwealth agencies and/or their agents or contractors in performing their duties relating to irregular maritime arrivals or other persons detained in the network;

   (k) the level, adequacy and effectiveness of reporting incidents and the response to incidents within the immigration detention network, including relevant policies, procedures, authorities and protocols;

   (l) compliance with the Government's immigration detention values within the detention network;

   (m) any issues relating to interaction with States and Territories regarding the detention and processing of irregular maritime arrivals or other persons;

   (n) the management of good order and public order with respect to the immigration detention network;

   (o) the total costs of managing and maintaining the immigration detention network and processing irregular maritime arrivals or other detainees;

   (p) the expansion of the immigration detention network, including the cost and process adopted to establish new facilities;

   (q) the length of time detainees have been held in the detention network, the reasons for their length of stay and the impact on the detention network;

   (r) processes for assessment of protection claims made by irregular maritime arrivals and other persons and the impact on the detention network; and

   (s) any other matters relevant to the above terms of reference;

  (2) the committee consist of 11 members, 2 Members to be nominated by the Government Whip or Whips, 2 Senators to be nominated by the Leader of the Government in the Senate, 2 Members to be nominated by the Opposition Whip or Whips, 2 Senators nominated by the Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, 1 Member and 1 Senator nominated by the Australian Greens Whip, and 1 non-aligned member;

  (3) participating members may be appointed to the committee. Participating members may participate in hearings of evidence and deliberations of the committee, and have all the rights of a member of the committee, but may not vote on any questions before the committee;

  (4) every nomination of a member of the committee be notified in writing to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives;


  (5) the members of the committee hold office as a joint select committee until the House of Representatives is dissolved or expires by effluxion of time, whichever is the earlier;

  (6) the committee shall elect a Government chair and deputy chair;

  (7) the deputy chair shall act as chair of the committee at any time when the chair is not present at a meeting of the committee, and at any time when the chair and deputy chair are not present at a meeting of the committee the members present shall elect another member to act as chair at that meeting;

  (8) in the event of an equally divided vote, the chair, or the deputy chair when acting as chair, have a casting vote;

  (9) 3 members of the committee constitute a quorum of the committee provided that in a deliberative meeting the quorum shall include 1 Government member of either House and 1 non-Government member of either House;

  (10) the committee have power to appoint subcommittees consisting of 3 or more of its members and to refer to any subcommittee any matter which the committee is empowered to examine;

  (11) the committee appoint the chair of each subcommittee who shall have a casting vote only;

  (12) at any time when the chair of a subcommittee is not present at a meeting of the subcommittee the members of the subcommittee present shall elect another member of that subcommittee to act as chair at that meeting;

  (13) 2 members of a subcommittee constitute the quorum of that subcommittee;

  (14) members of the committee who are not members of a subcommittee may participate in the proceedings of that subcommittee but shall not vote, move any motion or be counted for the purpose of a quorum;

  (15) the committee or any subcommittee have power to call for witnesses to attend and for documents to be produced;

  (16) the committee or any subcommittee may conduct proceedings at any place it sees fit;

  (17) the committee or any subcommittee have power to adjourn from time to time and to sit during any adjournment of the House of Representatives and the Senate;

  (18) the committee may report to both Houses of Parliament from time to time and that it present its final report no later than 7 October 2011;

  (19) the provisions of this resolution, so far as they are inconsistent with the standing orders, have effect notwithstanding anything contained in the standing orders.

The Minister for Small Business (Senator Sherry), by leave, moved—That the Senate concurs with the resolution of the House of Representatives contained in message no. 173 relating to the appointment of a joint select committee.

Question put and passed.