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Wednesday, 11 December 2013
Page: 1491

Senator LUDLAM (Western Australia) (16:03): I move:

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) is accountable to its charter, its board and the people of Australia,

(ii) editors and journalists, not politicians, should make editorial decisions in a democracy that values a free press,

(iii) 80 per cent of Australians surveyed believe the ABC is balanced and even-handed when reporting news and current affairs, and

(iv) the ABC and the Special Broadcasting Service are vital public news, information, education and entertainment services for the benefit of citizens and audiences rather than advertisers and shareholders;

(b) rejects:

(i) complaints about the ABC unfairly competing with commercial media as vindictive and misconceived, and

(ii) government interference in the editorial decisions made by the ABC; and

(c) calls on all parties to commit to maintaining the ABC as a well-funded public broadcaster with an independent board free from political interference.