Page 1757 - Week 05 - Thursday, 11 May 2017

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We will not be supporting this clause. We are believers in the Mr Rattenbury a la 2016. That is the version we liked. He was a true reformer, and he set a deadline members:

… sometimes you need to set a deadline to get places.

Mr Coe: It’s because he’s part-time conviction politician.

MR HANSON: Well, I do not know what has happened, but it is very disappointing that he has sold out on this issue, just as we saw Ms Le Couteur sell out on CFZ land earlier this week.

MR RATTENBURY (Kurrajong) (6.39): It is a delight to follow such an interesting intervention from Mr Hanson. Like the other justice and community safety bills, this bill makes minor amendments to a range of legislation relating to justice and community safety. I will not discuss all of these changes as they are largely positive and relatively procedural. But I want to make some brief comments on a few in particular.

We welcome the amendments to the Civil Law (Wrongs) Act and the Limitation Act. It is well known that survivors of childhood sexual abuse can take many years to come forward and talk about their experiences. This is because of the shame and fear that has been instilled by the offender. We know that as many as one in four girls and one in six boys experience sexual abuse as a child. In particular, for boys who grow up to be men, the average time it takes to talk about it and seek support is 30 years. So it is understandable that it may take even more time for a victim to come forward and seek justice through civil proceedings. This is regardless of the environment in which the abuse occurred, and so the removal of the word “institutional” is an obvious and right thing to do.

We also welcome the amendment to the Gaming Machine Act to increase the problem gambling assistance fund levy to 0.75 per cent of gross gaming machine revenue. This commitment, which was contained in the parliamentary agreement, will lead to an increase of approximately $250,000 for research, community groups and counselling services to support people struggling with problem gambling in our community. This is a good start to tackle gambling harm but, as I talked about earlier today, there are many more measures that need to be introduced if we are to start taking poker machine addiction seriously. I look forward to further progress in this space.

I will not touch on the other provisions, but I will come to the issue of the FOI starting date because we will be supporting this delay in the commencement. I have listened to Mr Hanson’s comments and it got slightly creepy there with the level of obsession with my comments. I did say at the time I believed it could be done in time. But 12 months down the track I have spent time with the public service officials who are working on this and they have persuaded me that they need more time to implement this.

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