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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 11 Hansard (Wednesday, 10 November 2021) . . Page.. 3282 ..

and attack a police officer, an ambo or a first responder that it is not okay, and that they will not get the presumption of bail if they do that. It is summed up by frontline workers themselves. I will quote from another statement from the AFPA, which said:

Should bail procedures better protect first responders in the ACT? Should the commission of alleged violent crimes preclude bail being granted? Does the ACT government have more of an obligation to protect employees it contracts from the AFP to police in Canberra? We think so.

They said that the bill “is comprehensive and will provide our members with the safety that they expect”. I will quote from Jason Taylor, who I mentioned before—the former police officer who was assaulted on the job and has suffered greatly as a consequence. He said:

We do not deserve to be treated as punching bags for members of the public who don’t like it when we do our jobs.

You are a member of the ACT Legislative Assembly. You have been and will continue to be involved in the creation of laws that put people in Police and Emergency Service roles in harm’s way. You have an obligation to us when this harm becomes too much to deal with.

Please, do the right thing.

Today, the Labor Party and the Greens will not be doing the right thing. They will be letting down our police. They will be letting down our first responders, but we will continue this fight. It took us years of lobbying, moving motions and arguing that we needed legislation in the first place to create an offence of assaulting a frontline community service provider, and we will continue to argue that if that occurs then there should be no presumption for bail. We stand with our police. We stand with our first responders and our emergency services personnel. It is disappointing that this government chooses not to stand with them.

Question put:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

The Assembly voted—

Ayes 7

Noes 14

Mr Cain

Mr Braddock

Ms Orr

Ms Castley

Ms Burch

Dr Paterson

Mr Hanson

Ms Cheyne

Mr Pettersson

Mrs Jones

Ms Clay

Mr Rattenbury

Ms Lawder

Ms Davidson

Mr Steel

Mr Milligan

Mr Davis

Ms Stephen-Smith

Mr Parton

Mr Gentleman

Ms Vassarotti

Question resolved in the negative.

Bill negatived.

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