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Thursday, 7 December 2017
Page: 10110

Senator McGRATH (QueenslandAssistant Minister to the Prime Minister) (16:11): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator McGRATH: The government does not support this motion. Advocates in Australia continue to make inaccurate claims about the facilities on Manus Island. Alternative accommodation has been available to house all inhabitants of the former regional processing centre since 31 October. The Papua New Guinea-operated alternative accommodation provides them with food, water, security and medical services.

The coalition government's strong and consistent border protection policies, including offshore processing, have saved countless lives. Advocates who continue to agitate against the government's policies are acting against the best interests of asylum seekers, including those on Manus Island. The coalition government's policies will not change.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: The question is that general business motion No. 662, as amended by Senator Griff, be agreed to.