Monday, 16 October 2017
Australian Border Force Amendment (Protected Information) Bill 2017; In Committee
The government will not be supporting the Australian Greens amendment. The government considers that its proposed definition of immigration and border protection information strikes the correct balance between transparent, open and accountable government and protecting information from disclosure that would lead to identifiable harm. The explanatory memorandum provides a clear outline of what is covered by security, defence and international relations in the context of the bill. Therefore, there is no need to refer to other legislation to define these terms.
I do note that the government has given effect to the recommendation of the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee. Mr Temporary Chair Leyonhjelm, you'd be aware that the committee made one recommendation, and that the government accepted that recommendation, such that the minister will now have the power to prescribe additional kinds of immigration and border protection information instead of the secretary, as had been originally drafted.
With those comments, I reiterate that we will not be supporting the Australian Greens amendment.