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Monday, 24 February 2014
Page: 655


The following notices were given:

M r P yne to move:

That this House, in relation to the statement made on 21 May 2012 by Mr Craig Thomson, the then Member for Dobell:

(1)   expresses its regret for the statement and its contents, much of which has been proven as false by the findings of the Melbourne Magistrates Court on 18 February 2014 in relation to Mr Thomson; and

(2)   apologises to:

   (a)   those individuals named in the speech against which egregious falsehoods were made; and

   (b)   the members of the Health Services Union, some of the lowest paid workers in Australia, for the spending by Mr Craig Thomson of $267,721.65 of Union members’ funds on his re-election campaign and further private expenditure not authorised by the Union.

Mr E. T. Jones to move:

That this House notes:

(1) the importance of investing in the Bruce Highway to improve productivity;

(2) that the Bruce Highway is integral to the transport of goods along the eastern coast of Queensland;

(3) that priority must be given to the most pressing projects; and

(4) that the development of Northern Australia relies heavily on improving infrastructure in North Queensland.

Mrs K. L. Andrews to move:

That this House:

(1) recognises that:

(a) there are three significant netball events approaching over the next four years, the:

   (i) Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014;

   (ii)   Netball World Cup in Sydney in August 2015; and

   (iii)   Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast in 2018; and

(b) netball:

   (i) continues to be one of the most popular sports in Australia with the highest participation rate of any team sport amongst girls; and

   (ii)   has been identified as not only having notable fitness benefits but also significantly decreasing the likelihood of depression; and

(2) acknowledges that:

(a) Australia’s elite netball players have opportunities to interact with parliamentarians as they prepare for the upcoming Commonwealth Games and the Netball World Cup;

(b) the Australian media plays an important role in highlighting the role that netball has in our cultural identity, which in turn promotes the sport and increases participation rates; and

(c) Netball Australia should be congratulated for its impact in boosting the profile of women in sport, providing its members with valuable leadership skills and supporting world-class athletes.

Ms Plibersek to move:

That this House:

(1) notes:

(a) the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Report of the detailed findings of the commission of inquiry on human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) released on 17 February 2014;

(b) the gravity, scale and nature of human rights violations and crimes against humanity which have been and are being committed systematically by the DPRK, including murder, enslavement, starvation, torture, rape and persecution on the grounds of race, religion and gender, and other inhumane acts;

(c) first hand testimony from DPRK refugees, escapees and asylum seekers;

(d) the political and security apparatus of the DPRK and the use of tactics including surveillance, selective distribution of food, fear, public executions and forced disappearances; and

(e) the crimes against humanity against non-DPRK citizens through international abduction and forced repatriation;

(2) recognises the significance of the public hearings held by the commission of inquiry, in informing the report;

(3) acknowledges the work of the Chair of the commission of inquiry, the Hon. Michael Kirby AC CMG, and his important contribution to improved international understanding and capacity to respond to the state of human rights in the DPRK; and

(4) calls on the Government to take all available steps to:

(a) support the recommendations of the report;

(b) urge United Nations action on the findings of the report; and

(c) support efforts to hold those responsible for crimes accountable through the International Criminal Court.

Mr Williams to move:

That this House notes:

(1) with concern that unemployment in South Australia is higher than the national average;

(2) that South Australia has a talented workforce that deserves a government determined to:

(a) reduce taxes and regulation;

(b) grow the state’s economy, and

(c) liberate the people of South Australia to realise their destiny; and

(3) that the Australian Government has a plan to build a stronger South Australian economy so that everyone can get ahead through abolishing the carbon tax, ending the waste, stopping the boats, and building the roads of the 21st century.

Mr Hayes to move:

That this House:

(1) notes that:

(a) the Assyrian population of Iraq continues to suffer persecution more than ten years after the fall of Saddam Hussein; and

(b) in 2003 there were nearly 1.4 million Christians in Iraq, but due to deaths and forced migration, this figure has fallen to around 500,000;

(2) congratulates the Government of Iraq on giving in principal support for the establishment of three provinces to specifically provide for the interests of Iraqi minority groups;

(3) acknowledges that the establishment of a province in the Nineveh Plains region could provide a haven for Assyrian as well as Christian, Mandaean and other minorities for the continuation of their linguistic, cultural and religious traditions; and

(4) calls on the Government of lraq to formalise this region as an autonomous province in order to ensure the security of its inhabitants and the preservation of their ancient culture and tradition.

Ms Parke to move:

That this House:

(1) notes that:

(a) since 1 July 1932 when ABC Radio first came on air, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), created by the Australian Parliament, has played an integral and essential role in serving communities from all corners of the Australian Federation;

(b) the ABC and more recently, the Special Broadcasting Corporation (SBS), have played a key role in facilitating the evolution of a diverse but cohesive Australian polity, contributed significantly to the creation of a distinctive Australian identity, and been a critical guarantor of the quality and strength of Australian democracy;

(c) the ABC’s Charter states the broadcaster shall ‘contribute to a sense of national identity and inform and entertain, and reflect the diversity of the Australian community’;

(d) public broadcasting plays an irreplaceable role in delivering a range of services that have not been provided and are not likely to be provided by private media organisations, including high-quality educational children’s television, comprehensive emergency services broadcasts, non-English language and multicultural programming, and comprehensive coverage of major civic and sporting events, and democratic processes;

(e) the news, information, entertainment, and emergency service announcements provided by the ABC are of particular importance in regional and remote communities across Australia;

(f) the ABC has a longstanding and established reputation, based on public opinion data and independent analysis, as the most trusted and trustworthy source of television and radio news in Australia;

(g) the conservative think-tank, the Institute of Public Affairs, has called for the breakup and/or privatisation of the ABC and SBS; and

(h) on the day before the election, on 6 September 2013, speaking live to SBS from Penrith football stadium, the Prime Minister said, ‘No cuts to education, no cuts to health, no change to pensions, no change to the GST and no cuts to the ABC or SBS’; and

(2) calls on the Government to:

(a) confirm the Prime Minister’s clear and unequivocal commitment that there will be no cuts to the ABC or SBS;

(b) cease its unwarranted, politically motivated vilification of the ABC as a news organisation, and its baseless criticism of the ABC’s organisational independence and integrity;

(c) respect the ABC’s mandate to provide innovative and comprehensive broadcasting services, which in this digital age includes many platforms and cannot be confined to radio and television; and

(d) uphold the ABC and SBS Acts in respect of the arms-length, merit-based, and consultative protocols used for the appointment of ABC and SBS Board members.

Ms Hall to move:

That this House:

(1) notes that:

(a) 28 February is Rare Disease Dayand encourages all Members to acknowledge that around 10 per cent of the population including 400,000 children suffer from these diseases;

(b) rare diseases, of which there are more than 8,000, are complex, often with inadequate or no treatment; and

(c) 80 per cent of rare diseases affect children and most begin in childhood only to continue throughout life;

(2) recognises that:

(a) for best practice treatments to be achieved, Australians with rare diseases must have access to a wide range of trials; and

(b) a rare disease registry is potentially valuable to the progress of medical research in this field; and

(3) acknowledges:

(a) the vital role organisations play in assisting the patients with treatment and quality of life; and

(b) that an investigation into the establishment of a national patient registry, free of commercial interests, for research purposes.