GOVERNMENT BILL: Summary Offences (Declared Public Precincts) Amendment Bill
November 3rd, 2016
On the 3rd of November 2016, Mark spoke in opposition to the Summary Offences (Declared Public Precincts) Amendment Bill 2016:
The Hon. M.C. PARNELL: I rise briefly to speak to this bill today. One of the reasons
that I do not propose to take a lot of time dealing with this bill is that I am pleased to associate myself
with the remarks of my colleague the Hon. Andrew McLachlan who, in a comprehensive contribution
on 18 October, set out most of the issues that concerned the Greens. He read onto the record the
submissions that we would have read if he had not done so.
I also note that the honourable member posed a large number of very important questions.
On my count there are 20 questions that he posed. These are also questions that the Greens need
answered, and we look forward to the minister doing so. We would like the minister to answer them
at the conclusion of the second reading because, whilst I have associated myself with the comments
of the honourable member, we reach a slightly different conclusion. The opposition will be supporting
this bill going through past the second reading, while the Greens believe that it has so little merit that
we will be opposing it at the second reading.
The questions that the honourable member asked are sensible, and the submissions that he
referred to are absolutely telling in the story they provide about what is wrong with this bill. The
submissions I refer to are from the Law Society, the Youth Affairs Council and the Aboriginal Legal
Rights Movement. If there is anything that those submissions have in common, it is how poorly
thought through this legislation is. There are a large number of potentially unintended consequences,
and that is on top of the scope for abuse that exists in the broad-ranging powers that the bill provides.
One of the unintended consequences that I think sums up pretty well how poorly thought
through this bill is was in some notes from the Law Society that referred to the fact that there are a
number of young people who come from very difficult backgrounds. They are effectively homeless,
and they are regarded by the state as people for whom it is inappropriate to live at home.
These young people are in receipt of an allowance referred to as the 'unreasonable to live at
home' allowance, yet the bill, as drafted, would have these minors caught in a declared precinct
potentially being removed from that precinct with the suggestion that they should go home. Well, they
do not have homes to go to in some instances. That is just one example of the many that are
contained in the submissions of the Law Society, Youth Affairs Council and Aboriginal Legal Rights
Whilst the Greens look forward to the answers that the minister will hopefully provide at the
conclusion of the second reading, unless it appears that there has been a colossal misunderstanding
on our part in terms of the clear language of the legislation, I can see no way that the Greens are
likely to support this bill at the second reading or beyond; therefore, we are opposing this legislation.
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