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Monday, 2 December 2002
Page: 6900


Senator BROWN (9:50 PM) —I will be supporting the amendment. Senator Harradine's reference to the supply of blood in Australia is an extremely good one. We should comprehensively apply that to the supply of human tissue, whatever its derivation. While it is interesting to find out what the current situation is regarding adult stem cells, this amendment has the power of a good argument and I would not like to see it set aside even if it does turn out that there is trade in adult stem cells. In fact, if that were the case, it would be a very good thing if a stop was put to it.

One of the concerns I have overarching this legislation is that a driving power for the legislation is commercial interest. That is totally inappropriate to the outcomes that are being predicted by those who most strongly support this legislation—that is, it is being pushed for the purpose of getting curative outcomes for humans who have illnesses or problems of one sort or another. I am concerned that that is really in some cases subsidiary to the commercial advantage that corporations and others can see coming out of stem cell experimentation. Whether it be adult or embryonic stem cells, I do not think we should have provision for that. I support this amendment.

Question put:

That the amendments (Senator Harradine's) be agreed to.