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Monday, 3 November 2003
Page: 21749

Mr PRICE (3:41 PM) —Mr Speaker, I have a question to you. I appreciate the security provisions that were necessary surrounding President Bush's visit, but I had great difficulty getting into parliament. I did not get here thanks to a security officer. It is my understanding that I am not the only one who was delayed and detained in this way. Could I seek your assurance that steps will be taken to ensure that, no matter who is addressing the House, members of parliament will be freely able to attend the chamber?

The SPEAKER —Let me reassure the member for Chifley that it was the absolute wish not only of the Presiding Officers but also of the parliament that everyone should have free and easy access. The Chief Opposition Whip, I understand, also had difficulty accessing the parliament. Wherever it was possible for my office to intervene in order to improve the access, it did so. I regret that the member for Chifley was inconvenienced. He would understand that these were extraordinary circumstances.