Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 14 Hansard (Tuesday, 28 November 2017) . . Page.. 5152 ..
as free agents whose own values and choices are valid. We are the party of freedom and free conscience. And I tell you what, Mr Assistant Speaker: there will be more voters for us in the next election as a result.
The decision to ban greyhound racing is anti-worker. It is anti-ACT voter because it is not the responsibility of those opposite to make people in New South Wales good. That is a massive overreach and in the process you abuse people who have probably voted for you. That is an embarrassment and a disgrace. You should hang your heads in shame when you leave this place.
This is against small businesses, the tiny microbusinesses that have worked for this industry for over 30 years, who do not have any option for retraining, who may not ever be able to get a job again. This is a decision by government which is more captive to the ALP movement. It is displaying totalitarian tendencies. “If you do not agree with us you are bad. You are not worthy of respect.”
It is a very ugly side to this Labor government and it will spell the end of continued support for so many workers and their families who just cannot believe that a former church minister who prayed in his congregation for those who could not put a roof over their heads or food on the table has become the unflinching arm of an increasingly totalitarian approach of winners and losers in dictator Barr’s government. It is not so Labor orientated. It is more like an extreme regime.
I wish it were not so. When things can be done together, everybody in this place knows that I work together with those on the other side. But there are no open ears and there are no listening hearts in this debate from those opposite. This is very ugly
The Greens and Minister Ramsay started telling Canberrans who the good and the bad people are, who they will tolerate in this city when they have taken over and who they will not suffer being here. Watch out anyone who disagrees with this mob, because they are coming after you.
MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella—Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Minister for Planning and Land Management and Minister for Urban Renewal) (4.40): I stand today to correct the record in respect of some of the comments that Mr Parton made. Firstly, earlier in this debate he said that I had met with the greyhound racing club in Canberra and told them that no ban was going to occur. I did meet with them. We discussed what the club was doing in the ACT, the amount of money that was flowing across the border into New South Wales from prize winnings, and the number of New South Wales dogs and trainers that were operating in the ACT—quite a large number, Madam Deputy Speaker.
The term I used was that at this time we would not be using the term “ban” but we will assist the industry to transition and we will be winding it up and that funding will cease. I made it very clear that we will be assisting the industry in winding up, that funding will cease, and that we will help them transition.