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Monday, 9 December 2013
Page: 1948

Ms VAMVAKINOU (Calwell) (15:23): I second the motion and welcome the adoption of the resolution, which reflect the rules for media related activity in Parliament House and its precincts that were adopted by the committee and endorsed and tabled by the presiding officers in late 2012. These will now be in force. I want to take this opportunity to sincerely thank the members of the Joint Standing Committee on the Broadcasting of Parliamentary Proceedings. I want to begin by thanking the honourable member for Chisholm, who chaired the committee in her capacity as Speaker of the House of Representatives. The member for Chisholm is attending parliamentary commitments overseas in the Cook Islands and is unable to speak here today. But I wish to convey to the House her sentiments. I also want to commend her stewardship of the committee and in particular I want to thank her for her dedication and for the focus she showed as chair during the inquiry that the committee conducted into media related activity at Parliament House.

Given the nature of the inquiry, sensitivity and diplomacy were required, especially when dealing with members of the press gallery and representatives of other media outlets, in particular because we were discussing the parameters of media related activity and the usage of footage taken in Parliament House. As such, I would also like to thank other members of the committee, including no less than Senator the Hon. John Hogg, the President of the Senate. I also want to thank the member for Parkes; the member for Fowler; the Hon. John Murphy, the former member for Reid, who is very well known for his keen interest in media related activity in Parliament House; the member for Longman; Senator Stephen Parry; and Senator Lin Thorp.

The inquiry gave the committee the opportunity to look at issues, take evidence and form recommendations to bring the broadcasting of parliamentary proceedings in line with the changing nature of modern broadcasting requirements and community expectations. We worked in a collegiate and bipartisan manner with a clear view that all the stakeholders, parliament and media, needed to work together to devise the best possible and most workable rules that effectively work in the public interest.

Many thanks need to also go to the following people who served in the secretariat: Mr James Catchpole, who was secretary from 2 October 2012; Siwan Davies, who was secretary until 2 October 2012; and Sonia Palmieri, who served as secretary until 17 December 2012.

In conclusion, the committee has put together a series of rules that reflect the expectations of the stakeholders and that will provide a workable and fair framework in which we can conduct our procedures and interactions. It is a fair balance between preserving the requirements of dignity and privacy while at the same time giving the appropriate access necessary to the press in their cause of reporting and accountability. I commend the rules to the House.

Question agreed to.