Tuesday, 2 September 2008
Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs and Other Legislation Amendment (Emergency Response Consolidation) Bill 2008
Consideration in Detail
I do have to correct the member for Warringah again, because the legislation that the previous government had in place was not about a complete ban on pornography. He may have wished it to be, but it was not. It was about pay television; it was not about DVDs. I think he should hold back a little bit on the rhetoric. I would also say to him that one thing is for sure, particularly in Indigenous affairs: talking helps. I do think that the majority of people around Australia, no matter what their walk of life, would recognise that if you sit down and talk with people then you generally get a better result.
On the issue of the failure of policing in the Northern Territory, I think that is an extraordinary statement on the part of the member for Warringah. The police in the Northern Territory do an extraordinary job in very difficult circumstances and, of course, have access to communities. I would say that the biggest problem in the Northern Territory has been the lack of police in many communities. I think one of the very positive results from the intervention has been the increased number of police, from the states and also from the AFP. If there is one area that I think we probably agree on very strongly, it is the need to continue to increase the number of police in communities that very much need it. The police take the view that the permit system is helpful. We do need to increase the number of police. They do not have problems with access, and I think it is critical in this area of pornography that we actually make it plain that we are attempting to extend the legislation that was previously agreed to by the last parliament to further deal with pornography in communities. It would be helpful if we could get the support of the opposition.
That the amendments (Mr Abbott’s) be agreed to.