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Monday, 26 March 2018
Page: 2123

Senator WILLIAMS (New South WalesNationals Whip in the Senate) (15:41): At the request of Senator O'Sullivan, I move:

That the Senate:

(a) acknowledges that Professor Gary Dowsett is:

(i) currently employed as Deputy Director at the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society at La Trobe University, and

(ii) is the author of an article entitled, 'Boiled Lollies and Bandaids: Gay men and Kids', in Gay Information Quarterly Journal (Spring 1982) in which he stated the following:

'And a new political position is needed for there are significant political struggles at stake. First we have three legal/social questions to win: custody rights for gay men and lesbians; the legal right of paedophiles and their young lovers; and finally the sexual rights of children as a whole....'

'How different then is that gentle, tentative sexuality between parent and child from the love of a paedophile and his/her lover? From all their accounts and from many academic studies (some worse than others) that kind of love, warmth, support and nurture is an important part of the paedophilic relationship. I am not saying that mothering/fathering is paedophilic; but I am saying they are not mutually exclusive...'

'...The current paedophilia debate is then crucial to the political processes of the gay movement: paedophiles need our support, and we need to construct the child/adult sex issue on our terms.'

'We need to protect the youthful partners in paedophilia against the legal and social management systems which treats them as delinquents...';

(b) condemns:

(i) any statement that supports any form of legal rights or political freedoms for paedophiles, and

(ii) as 'vulgar and reprehensible' Professor Dowsett's past statements regarding advocacy for paedophilia and any connection between parenting and sexual/paedophilic 'pleasures';

(c) acknowledges that an overwhelming number of Australian parents would be concerned about any individual who has made past statements regarding advocacy for paedophilia to continue to be employed at any Australian university;

(d) calls on Professor Dowsett to publically explain:

(i) his past statements regarding advocacy for paedophilia, and detail his current beliefs specifically on the question of whether the LGBTI community should 'support' paedophiles, and

(ii) whether his past statements regarding advocacy for paedophilia jeopardise his credibility among the parents of students at La Trobe University; and

(e) calls on La Trobe University to:

(i) provide a public explanation regarding why Professor Dowsett continues to be employed by La Trobe University, and continues to be afforded close contact with young people,

(ii) publically explain what due diligence has been undertaken—throughout any period of Professor Dowsett's employment at the University—to investigate what risk and/or impact Professor Dowsett's past statements and any current views held consistent with those statements, regarding paedophilia might place on the wellbeing of young students at its institution, and

(iii) immediately investigate the current status of Professor Dowsett's views.