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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 02 Hansard (Tuesday, 20 February 2018) . . Page.. 433 ..

This bill contains significant criminal law reforms. Changes to the criminal law will offer a fairer, evidence-based process for prosecuting crimes against children. Gaps in the criminal law and issues with the administration of sentences will be remedied. And it will introduce a foundation for culturally appropriate sentencing in the Children’s Court. Taken as a whole, this bill represents a focus on protecting vulnerable people from harm and ensuring that our criminal justice system keeps improving and keeps Canberra safe. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Detail stage

Clauses 1 to 3, by leave, taken together.

Motion (by Mr Hanson) proposed:

That debate be adjourned.

Question resolved in the negative.

Clauses 1 to 3 agreed to.

Clause 4.

MR RAMSAY (Ginninderra—Attorney-General, Minister for Regulatory Services, Minister for the Arts and Community Events and Minister for Veterans and Seniors) (4.52): Pursuant to standing order 182A(a), I seek leave to move amendments to this bill that are urgent.

Leave granted.

MR RAMSAY: I move amendment No 1 circulated in my name [see schedule 1 at page 444]. I table a supplementary explanatory statement to the government amendments. By way of a general introduction to the government amendments, as I said earlier, these amendments provide additional clarity to the provisions implementing the recommendations of the royal commission to provide an effective way of prosecuting cases of ongoing child sexual abuse and criminalising the grooming of young people or their parents in order to gain access to a child.

In moving these amendments I would like to emphasise the level of consultation that has gone into this bill and these amendments. The Bar Association and the Law Society are the only stakeholders who have raised concerns with the legislation. We also spoke to the Canberra Rape Crisis Centre, the Human Rights Commission, Legal Aid ACT, the Victims of Crime Commissioner and ACT Policing. The Human Rights Commissioner endorsed these amendments as appropriate to address any concerns about unintended outcomes in this bill.

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