Senate debates

Tuesday, 19 October 2021


Members of Parliament: Staff

3:34 pm

Photo of Larissa WatersLarissa Waters (Queensland, Australian Greens) Share this | Hansard source

The Greens would like to thank Ms Stephanie Foster for the work that has led to this motion, but we owe progress on harassment and bullying in parliamentary workplaces to the bravery and commitment of women like Brittany Higgins, Dhanya Mani, Chelsey Potter, Rachelle Miller and others who have made their traumatic experiences public. It shouldn't have taken that level of disclosure to force change, but countless staff and senators in this place can thank those brave women for change being on the way. Staff said loud and clear that the lack of an independent complaints mechanism or any real consequences where abusers were MPs stopped them from reporting. That is one of the reasons why a toxic culture in this place has festered for so long. This new workplace support service, and the disciplinary process set out in this motion, goes some way to addressing that, but there is still more to do. An enforceable code of conduct for all MPs is needed to lift standards, and we look forward to Commissioner Jenkins' review recommendations coming later in the year.

Question agreed to.


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