19 November 2015
(Opposition Leader's Motion of Censure, 18 November 2015, Legislative Assembly, NSW Parliament)
Motion and full debate HERE.
I will build on the comments of my crossbench colleagues, the member for Lake Macquarie and the member for Balmain. We are dealing with a very serious motion and a very serious claim. But all we have so far is a claim. While I acknowledge that the Opposition has questions about whether the Attorney General has fulfilled her obligation in Cabinet discussions, I am not certain that she has failed in this regard.
I have been given no information to indicate a breach. Indeed, concerns have only been raised because the Attorney General declared her shares on her pecuniary interest statement. I have carefully listened to the responses of the Attorney General in which she explains her actions and I am certainly not satisfied that the Attorney General has failed in her duties. Also on reflection I am particularly concerned about paragraph (2) of the motion because it does not reflect my dealings and the dealings of other members with the Attorney.
Of importance to me has been her important work to progress LGBTI reforms. The Attorney is clearly committed to equality for all before the law. She has held a briefing with members from across the party and Human Rights Commissioner Tim Wilson, and has committed to review a number of important areas of law reform. Not all members want to end discrimination against LGBTI communities, and I am thankful that this Government has an Attorney General who is committed to that. She is also working to enable children who are victims of sex offences to give evidence in a way that is not confronting, and has improved sentencing for firearm offences.
When she was the Minister for Family and Community Services last year, her dedication successfully had funding restored to inner-city women's services to ensure that women escaping domestic violence have safe and secure accommodation away from the perpetrators of that violence. The Attorney General has my respect and support. I look forward to continuing to work with her on important reforms. When we should be dealing with really important areas of reform that require attention, again we are dealing with something that is in the pages of the Daily Telegraph, and that happens far too often in the place. Since becoming a member I for one am sick and tired of the witch-hunts engaged in by the Daily Telegraph and I am sick and tired of the way that certain members jump on its bandwagon. We can send a strong message today by opposing the censure motion and showing our deep respect for the great work of the Attorney General.