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Tuesday, 26 June 2018
Page: 3953


Senator MARTIN (Tasmania) (16:10): I, and also on behalf of Senators Williams, O'Sullivan, Abetz, Bushby, Colbeck, Duniam, McKim, Whish-Wilson, Polley, Singh, Urquhart, Bilyk and Brown, move:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

   (i) 28 years after the creation of the Australian Football League's (AFL) national competition, Tasmania remains without a team in either the men's or women's competitions,

   (ii) along with Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, Tasmania is an original foundational state for Australian Rules football,

   (iii) Australian Rules football remains one of the biggest social institutions in Tasmania, and plays an important role in the health and well-being of Tasmanians, as well as supporting the strength and cohesion of communities throughout the state,

   (iv) Tasmania has been a regular and proud source of talent for the AFL and AFLW since their inception,

   (v) despite three decades of support by the community and many politicians, including the bipartisan recommendations of a Senate committee, the AFL and AFLW has not committed to a Tasmanian AFL team, and

   (vi) Tasmanian football is at the crossroads and with limited talent pathways there is significant risk to community interest and enthusiasm which is compounded with increasing competition from other sports;

(b) expresses its support for the establishment and inclusion of a Tasmanian team in the AFL at the soonest feasible opportunity; and

(c) calls on the AFL to commission new independent business plans for the inclusion of a Tasmanian team in the men's and women's national leagues by 2023.