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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Week 6 Hansard (23 June) . . Page.. 2461..


MR STEFANIAK (continuing):

professional development; assist with pastoral care; and be neutral in respect of any political positions that may crop up from time to time.

We grant religious freedom but religious people and religious leaders should avoid prejudice, fanaticism and hatred towards individuals, and should not incite or legitimise religious wars. They should be guides for truthfulness in thinking, speaking and acting. Professionals generally should have high ethical standards of integrity and should act with honour and dignity to earn the trust of the community.

I deal with professionals in section 8. There are provisions in relation to how members of the legal profession should serve their clients and the community. Again, these are largely drawn from professional standards already in existence. For the judiciary there are standards in relation to the code of chief justices of Australia-the Guide to judicial conduct. This gives a guide to how they should operate. Similarly there are provisions for journalists and the media. They have guides and codes by which to operate. This is drawn largely from those.

Employers and employees are dealt with in subsection 12. Section 13 deals with sexuality and says that people should not either treat each other as sex objects or disadvantage anyone because of their sexuality. Marriage is dealt with. Marriage should be characterised by love, loyalty and permanence, with a guarantee of mutual security and support. Of course there is a provision in relation to the family and a family's relationships with one another which will be based on mutual respect, appreciation and concern and the raising of children, so as to acknowledge the importance of community and that the community respects them.

Part 1.2 deals with responsibilities to society. There is firstly a provision that everyone should obey the law, because the law is made by the elective representatives on behalf of everyone-the people-and it is an expression of society's will and responsibility. If people break the law, they should have the responsibility of confessing and admitting that they have done wrong and adhere to that and accept appropriate punishment and anything that flows from that breach.

There is a section on economic and political power. That power should not be misused; it should be used for the service of people. Then there is respect for property. People need to acknowledge and respect the rights associated with each other's property-not just each other's individual property but community property as well. People should not engage in any social activity of defacing property or unlawfully removing property. My colleague Mr Cornwell was concerned about vandalism and graffiti. People should not unlawfully remove property; people should have a responsibility to protect the property of others and that of the community. They should have a responsibility to report antisocial activity to any appropriate authority.

Finally, there is respect for the environment-this is again drawn from the UN draft declarations. People should acknowledge and respect the principle that the lives of animals and plants deserve protection, preservation and care and that people have a responsibility not only to our present generation but also to future generations to take care of the environment.


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