Wednesday, 28 September 2022
Senate Standing Orders
On behalf of Senator Gallagher, I move:
That standing order 50 be amended, with effect from the first sitting day in October 2022, to read as follows—
50 Acknowledgement of country and prayer
The President, on taking the chair each day, shall make an acknowledgement of country in the following terms:
I acknowledge the Ngunnawal and Ngambri peoples who are the traditional custodians of the Canberra area and pay respect to the elders, past and present, of all Australia's Indigenous peoples.
The President shall then read the following prayer:
Senators, I invite you, as I read the prayer, to pray or reflect in your own way on your responsibilities to the people of Australia and to future generations.
Almighty God, we humbly beseech Thee to vouchsafe Thy special blessing upon this Parliament, and that Thou wouldst be pleased to direct and prosper the work of Thy servants to the advancement of Thy glory, and to the true welfare of the people of Australia.
Our Father, which art in Heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
I want to take this opportunity to consider the priorities of this government. At a time when Australians across the country are dealing with the significant pressures of the cost-of-living crisis currently gripping Australia, as fuel prices are going up by over 20c a litre, and as people are suffering from price hikes at the supermarket, in their power bills and in their mortgage payments, what are the priorities of this government? They are certainly not responding to these pressures, having not announced a single measure of immediate cost-of-living relief. Nor are they practising what they preach with regard to changes to the standing orders, flagged by the Jenkins review, to have a more family-friendly workplace—just last night the Senate was forced to sit till nearly midnight. Instead they come in here today with this motion as their priority, tinkering around the edges for the first two minutes of the Senate instead of taking real action to address cost-of-living pressures impacting Australian families.