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Monday, 29 February 2016
Page: 1237

The PRESIDENT (10:39): Senator Conroy, that is a fair question. The statement should be circulated at any moment. Could I suggest that you reflect on the statement and then, if you wish to come back to me with questions from that, that might be a more appropriate avenue. In essence, I have indicated that we have to be mindful of the wider audience, including schoolchildren and people who listen to this broadcast. People have complained about language used in debate from time to time, and the onus is on each individual senator as to how they use language in this place. That is the current aspect. I will be asking the Procedure Committee to make any further determination and come back to the Senate if we need to revise our standing orders; that is the role of the Procedure Committee. But at this point it is up to each individual senator to be mindful of all the issues that I have just mentioned in my statement, to exercise their great privilege in debate that they have in this place and to consider, when they are using language: is it appropriate language to be used, and is it appropriate language for the public at large to listen to? That is basically what I have said.