Page 2768 - Week 07 - Wednesday, 29 June 2011

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“Smithy’s Mystery” aired on 18 February is unlikely to breach section 66 of the ACT Discrimination Act (inciting hatred, serious contempt or ridicule). However, the Commissioner believes that it is possible that the broadcast meets the test in the Federal Racial Discrimination Act of ‘reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate’ Iraqi, Iranian and Kurdish people (the nationalities involved). This matter has, therefore, been raised directly with the Federal Discrimination Commissioner, Graeme Innes, to further pursue.

Justice and Community Safety—Standing Committee

Scrutiny report 39

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra): I present the following report:

Justice and Community Safety—Standing Committee (performing the duties of a Scrutiny of Bills and Subordinate Legislation Committee)—Scrutiny Report 39, dated 28 June 2011.

I seek leave to make a brief statement.

Leave granted.

MRS DUNNE: Scrutiny report 39 contains the committee’s comments on two bills which will be debated today. The report was circulated to members yesterday. I commend the report to the Assembly.

MR HARGREAVES (Brindabella), by leave: It needs to be said that, with respect to the electoral donations amendment bill, the point is made that one needs to be particularly careful about these particular pieces of legislation in case they offend freedom of expression. The point was fairly well made by the committee report.

I would also like to indicate to the Assembly that, of course, there is the possibility that these sorts of matters may very well be unconstitutional. I urge members to consider the case of the Tasmanian electoral donations limit in the upper house of Tasmania in times past. I recall that at the time when the upper house in Tasmania had no party members per se—they were all independents—there was a limit of $4,000 on expenditure. I know that there was a suggestion that that limit may very well have been unconstitutional, but the point was that nobody had the money to prosecute the case in the High Court. But legal opinion had that. And that goes to the sorts of comments which are put into this report.

Crimes (Penalties) Amendment Bill 2011

Mrs Dunne, pursuant to notice, presented the bill and its explanatory statement.

Title read by Clerk.

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (10.04): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

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