Wednesday, 9 November 2016
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources. Is the Deputy Prime Minister aware of any proposals that would treat foreign agricultural workers better than Australian agricultural workers? What impact would such an outcome have on young jobseekers in regional Australia?
Mr Sukkar interjecting—
I thank the honourable member for his question. Yes, I do know of an alternative policy that is going to discriminate against Australian workers over foreign workers. I note also that in this backpacker tax issue we had negotiated with so many people an outcome that was fair and that also would attract labour from overseas, an outcome that was backed by the NFF, which said:
At the rate of 19 per cent, Australian wages are competitive with New Zealand and Canada and we can start to reconnect with working holiday makers …
It was an outcome that was supported by New South Wales farmers, who were happy at the proposed 19 per cent rate; an outcome that was supported by the Northern Territory Farmers Association, which had confidence in the new rate; an outcome that was supported by QFF; an outcome that was supported by the VFF; an outcome that was supported by the Lockyer fruitgrowers. It was an outcome that was supported by so many. But now there is this strange amalgam where we have the Senator Jacqui Lambie, Bill Shorten, One Nation pact—
No, I am addressing the House. When I have concluded addressing the House, I will hear the Manager of Opposition Business. I have made it very clear that members need to be referred to by their correct titles. I have made it very clear with the member for Melbourne, and I have not allowed him to ask his question.
Mr Burke interjecting—
You got one right, and the other wrong. The question I have ruled out of order. I have repeatedly asked this. I am clamping down on it. I know it is hard, but that is where I am going to leave it, and I am going to leave the Deputy Prime Minister at that point and go to the next question.