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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 12 April 2018) . . Page.. 1405 ..


I have several concerns about the have your say website. It does not say what they do with the data collected on the web page. What do they do with it? Further, why do they not have a disclaimer on their website? What makes the lack of disclaimer even more troubling is the important fact that political parties are exempt from the Privacy Act. Put simply, Mr Coe is farming data from submissions to the committee he sits upon with no accountability for the private information he has gleaned.

It is worth talking quite briefly about the use of third-party websites. I am actually quite agnostic on it. I am the chair of the education, employment and youth affairs committee. We had to contend with a third-party submission website for one of our inquiries. We were able to manage it. In that instance the committee accepted the submissions from the third-party website, and they are all freely readable on the committee website. PAC has similarly accepted submissions from the have your say website. You can also read them on the committee’s website. As much as Mr Coe may grandstand, no submissions have been blocked; nor would they be.

We are not here to pass judgement in any form on the content of the submissions. This motion is about the actions of members in this place, nothing more. The third-party submission website for the EEYA inquiry was built by UnionsACT. It had disclaimers and warnings about the purpose of that website. Mr Coe’s have your say website has no such warnings or disclaimers. One of these third-party sites is, indeed, from a third party. One of these third-party sites is from a member of this place, of that particular committee. If Mr Coe would, indeed, like to become a legitimate third party, he could quite simply resign and run his website. But I suspect he values his position as a member far more, particularly his membership of PAC.

There is an important discussion to be had about the use of third-party submission forms to our committees. This is not that discussion. This motion is about the actions of members of this place. I fully support Ms Cody’s motion.

MS CODY (Murrumbidgee) (4.23): Firstly, I thank Ms Le Couteur for her work on her amendment today. As was quite rightly pointed out to me in the Canberra Times this morning, there could have been a misunderstanding of the original motion I moved. My idea and my determination for moving this motion was not in any way to stop work from happening on any committee, let alone a committee I sit on. The sole purpose of bringing this motion forward was that I believed that there were some questionable acts that needed further investigation. I think it is fabulous that Ms Le Couteur has amended my original motion to ensure that the PAC can continue its work. It is very important work. I hope that residents feel able to talk about that particular piece of work and able to freely bring forward any submissions, any comments, anything they have regarding the PAC inquiry.

I also thank Ms Le Couteur for including the possibility of looking into some third-party submitters. I know that on some of the other committees on which I sit there have been questions about whether third-party submitters meet the recommendations. As Ms Le Couteur has included in her amendment, the Australian Christian Lobby have also been very robust in their third-party submissions to some


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