Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 31 May 1995) . . Page.. 598 ..
Mr Speaker, there are two points that must also be made clear in the debate on this proposal. Firstly, it will in no way inhibit members of the Assembly from choosing their personal staff on the basis of political conviction. Clearly, such a proposition would be quite unworkable when it came to members appointing personal staff under the LA(MS) Act. But section 45 of the Discrimination Act already provides an exception on the grounds of political conviction for members of this Assembly, political parties and similar employment. Secondly, Mr Speaker, the Bill which I am introducing is not retrospective. It will apply only after the legislation is passed and brought into force in the normal way. It does not, and will not, apply to any current case under the Discrimination Act. However, I believe that it is necessary to pass this legislation to ensure that the law is clear; to ensure that MLAs are responsible for their actions in relation to their staff or potential staff in exactly the same way as this Assembly has required of the electorate at large; to ensure that the members who make up this Assembly impose on themselves the same standards as they require of the community that they govern; and, finally, to ensure that our community understands that we will accept a high standard of behaviour as elected representatives. Mr Speaker, I commend the Bill to the Assembly.
Debate (on motion by Mr Humphries) adjourned.
MR BERRY (10.36): Mr Speaker, I move:
That this Assembly:
(1) notes the pain and suffering caused by tobacco consumption in the community;
(2) notes the billions of dollars it costs Australia annually;
(3) applauds the efforts of governments and activists throughout Australia towards the reduction of tobacco consumption;
(4) notes the continued efforts of tobacco companies to recruit new consumers - particularly amongst the young;
(5) condemns the Rothmans Corporation for its efforts to maintain and increase tobacco consumption; and
(6) believes that Health Care Card holders should be given relief for the purchase of nicotine patches under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.