Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download PDFDownload PDF 

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment

33    Family law select committee

Senator Waters, also on behalf of Senators McKim, Bilyk and Sheldon, pursuant to notice of motion not objected to as a formal motion, moved general business notice of motion no. 175—That—

(1)       The Senate notes that:

(a)       the Joint Select Committee on Australia’s Family Law System (the Committee) was appointed by resolution of the Senate on 18 September 2019, and resolution of the House of Representatives on 19 September 2019;

(b)       final membership of the Committee has yet to be confirmed, however, Mr Kevin Andrews, MP, is to be appointed as the Chair and Senator Hanson as the Deputy Chair;

(c)       the Federal Government has yet to act on or respond to the recommendations of the Australian Law Reform Commission review of the family law system;

(d)       up to 85% of matters in the Family Court involve family violence and abuse;

(e)       since the announcement of the inquiry into Australia’s family law system, numerous women’s and children’s safety organisations, including the Government reference group and Australian Women Against Violence Alliance, have condemned the inquiry and the proposed appointment of Mr Andrews and Senator Hanson; and

(f)        more than 1400 emails have been sent to the Prime Minister and other parliamentarians expressing concern that victims and survivors of family violence and abuse will not feel safe to give evidence to the inquiry, compromising the legitimacy of any recommendations made by the Committee.

(2)       The Senate calls on the Federal Government to:

(a)       immediately abandon the unnecessary and harmful inquiry by the Joint Select Committee on Australia’s Family Law System;

(b)       respond to the recommendations of:

                                                        (i)       the Australian Law Reform Commission’s review of family law, and

                                                      (ii)       the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs inquiry, Better family law system to support and protect those affected by family violence ; and

(c)       implement evidence-based strategies to make family law safer for victims and survivors of family violence.

(3)       This resolution be communicated to the House of Representatives for concurrence.

Statement by leave : The Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries (Senator Duniam), by leave, made a statement relating to the motion.

Question put.

The Senate divided—

AYES, 27

Senators—

Ayres

Faruqi

McCarthy

Steele-John

Bilyk

Gallacher

McKim

Sterle

Brown

Gallagher

Polley

Walsh

Chisholm

Green

Pratt

Waters

Ciccone*

Hanson-Young

Sheldon

Watt

Di Natale

Lines

Siewert

Whish-Wilson

Dodson

McAllister

Smith, Marielle

 

 

 

NOES, 33

Senators—

Abetz

Davey

Lambie

Reynolds

Antic

Duniam

McDonald

Roberts

Askew

Fierravanti-Wells

McGrath

Ryan

Bernardi

Griff

McMahon

Scarr

Brockman

Hanson

O’Sullivan

Sinodinos

Canavan

Henderson

Paterson

Smith, Dean*

Cash

Hughes

Patrick

Stoker

Chandler

Hume

Payne

Van

Colbeck

 

* Tellers

Question negatived.