Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- I would like to start by pointing out that the documents the Council requested to be tabled today -- which were the consultation documents for the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission, including any submissions made to the panel, any final briefings and the final report produced by the panel, and any other documents of an information or research nature produced or relied upon by the consultation panel -- have not been tabled today. The government has not even tabled a letter explaining whether it is looking for some of those documents, whether it will table them or anything. So much for openness and transparency.
It has certainly been raised in debate on this anticorruption regime, which is being set up by this series of bills going back to October of last year, that it is a great shame that the Charles report that the government has relied upon, we assume, in setting up this regime is not being made public. I still do not understand the reason for that.
"The OPI’s report of its review into police stop and search powers, released yesterday, confirms what the Greens and other groups have been saying: that there is no evidence to justify these laws", Greens spokesperson on justice, Sue Pennicuik said.
“The OPI found that there is no evidence to suggest that these powers have had any discernible impact on the rates of armed robbery, or the type of weapon used", she said.
“Any increase in police powers must be proportionate to the risk but the evidence just isn’t there to support these powers,” said Ms. Pennicuik.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- I move:
That this house requires the Leader of the Government to table in the Legislative Council by 22 May 2012, the following Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission Consultation Panel documents:
(a) any submissions made to the panel;
(b) any final briefings and the final report produced by the panel; and
(c) any other documents of an information or research nature produced or relied upon by the consultation panel.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- The Justice Legislation Amendment Bill 2012 is an omnibus bill, albeit a small omnibus bill. It makes amendments to five acts: the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005, the County Court Act 1958, the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998, the Magistrates' Court Act 1989 and the Victorian Law Reform Commission Act 2000.
The amendments to the Children, Youth and Families Act under clause 3 allow for the President of the Children's Court of Victoria to appoint a dispute resolution convenor instead of that appointment needing to be made by the Governor in Council. We are supportive of that amendment. The president is clearly in a position to ascertain if a person is of good character and has appropriate qualifications and experience to be a dispute resolution convenor.
Greens MP Sue Pennicuik has urged the government to invest more in alternatives to imprisonment, rather than spending $500 million on a new prison in Melbourne’s outer west.
"While prison terms are necessary for serious crimes, prison should otherwise be a last resort”, Ms Pennicuik said. “As a community, we should be aiming to reduce the number of people in prison with greater use of non-custodial sentences”.
“It is disturbing that there has been a continued growth in the Victorian prison population, which increased to a daily average of 4586 prisoners in 2010-11, an increase of 2.1 per cent from the 2009-10 daily average of 4492." *
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- My adjournment matter is for the Attorney-General, Mr Clark, and it is in regard to the recommendations of the Law Reform Committee's inquiry and report into access by donor-conceived people to information about donors. This report was tabled in this place on 28 March, and I said at the time that it was a very welcome report. I had not had a chance to read it at that time, but obviously I have had a chance to read through it since then. It is fair to say it is a comprehensive report, and it could be described as groundbreaking. I thank the Law Reform Committee, which is chaired by the member for Prahran in the other place, Clem Newton-Brown. Mrs Petrovich from this place is a member of that committee. I also thank the staff of that committee for the work they put in to produce this report.
Parliamentary inquiry into sex abuse in religious organisations - 774 ABC Melbourne