Victorian Greens LGBTI spokesperson, Sue Pennicuik MLC, today voiced her continued support for the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO).*
“Unfortunately, too many LGBTI people are still subject to discrimination in their daily lives and threats to their health and safety in our community,” Ms Pennicuik said. “This is unacceptable and we all must continue to fight against it.
"Today is a reminder to us all to stand up against discrimination and to speak out strongly against homophobia and transphobia wherever we see it,” Ms Pennicuik said.
The Greens are fighting for marriage equality with Adam Bandt’s Marriage Equality to be voted on in the Federal Parliament on Thursday, 6 June.
Revelations in today’s Age regarding the massacre of hundreds of ducks and protected species, left to die in the water in what was clearly an organised shooting spree, is emblematic of why duck shooting should be banned once and for all, Greens MP, Sue Pennicuik said today.
“What is worse is that this terrible incident, which must be shocking to the majority of Victorians who don’t support duck shooting, could have been prevented if warnings had been heeded,” Ms Pennicuik said.
The state budget is a big let down for everyone who cares about education, Victorian Greens Education spokesperson, Sue Pennicuik has said today.
"Capital funding for new schools at Wyndham Vale South, Melton North West, Doreen, Truganina and also land for the much needed new primary school in South Melbourne is welcome, particularly by those communities, but there is estimated to be around twenty urgently needed new schools and at least as many major rebuilds also urgently needed," Ms Pennicuik said.
"In addition, the $51.5m for 2013/14 is only a fraction of the $585m that it is needed for school repairs, identified by the 2005/06 school repairs audit. At this rate, without any new work, it will take a decade to complete the backlog, let alone the new schools and refurbishments that are and will be needed.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- By leave, I move:
- That the Parliamentary Committees Amendment Bill 2013 be referred to the Environment and Planning Legislation Committee for inquiry, consideration and report by 25 June 2013.
The motion would allow enough time for the Environment and Planning Legislation Committee to look at the bill and hold hearings or receive submissions if it needs to and the bill could then come back for it to be passed, amended or not amended, in time for its commencement date, which is 1 August.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- The Greens will support the Integrity Legislation Amendment Bill 2013. This bill amends the Independent Broad-based Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2011 and the Victorian Inspectorate Act 2011 by providing for pension entitlements for the IBAC Commissioner and the Inspector of the Victorian Inspectorate respectively. These entitlements have the same post-retirement restrictions as those which apply to Supreme Court judges, and they will restrict the ability of those officers to be appointed to public office when in receipt of a pension. The terms, conditions and rates of the entitlements are the same as for a judge of the Supreme Court.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- The Corrections Further Amendment Bill 2013 has been introduced to deal with two deficiencies in the Corrections Act 1986 that were highlighted by a recent Supreme Court decision. Briefly, before 1993 tobacco and cigarettes were sold in prisons at wholesale prices. In 1993, in support of a smoke-free policy, a corrections executive increased the price to 90 per cent of the recommended retail price. In 2004 the policy was updated and an increase was made to bring the price of tobacco and cigarettes to the recommended retail price.
“Prison operators are the big winners in this budget at the expense of programs that would help to keep people out of prison, with better outcomes for the community and at less cost to taxpayers,” Greens Justice spokesperson Sue Pennicuik said today.
“There is another $131.5 million dollars in prison funding in this budget – almost $53 million for a high security unit at Barwon Prison and almost $79 million for 357 more prison beds across the system,” Ms Pennicuik said. “On top of $819 million budgeted last year, including $670 million for a new men’s prison in Ravenhall, this brings funding for prisons over this and last year’s budget to $950 million or not much change from a billion dollars on prisons alone.”
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- Each year 28 April marks International Workers Memorial Day, the global union campaign for safer and healthier work. Workers Memorial Day was started in Canada by Canadian unions in 1984 and was adopted by the international union movement in 1996. Australian unions have marked the day since 1997, when I recall participating in a candlelight ceremony at 6.00 a.m. outside WorkSafe in Latrobe Street. Unfortunately I was not able to attend International Workers Memorial Day this year, but since April last year 21 people -- workers and unfortunately some bystanders -- have been killed as a result of workplace accidents in Victoria.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- On 25 October last year the Parliament of Victoria apologised to those who were affected by past adoption practices, and the Greens were very pleased to participate in that apology. In fact, when the Senate Community Affairs Reference Committee report into the commonwealth contribution to former forced adoption policies and practices was tabled last year I put on notice a motion on behalf of the people and the Parliament of Victoria calling on the government to apologise to people who had been affected by past adoption practices in Victoria. The Parliament of Western Australia had already done this in 2010, and the Parliament of South Australia had announced that it was also going to do so.
Therefore we were very pleased to participate, and the words that were spoken by the leaders of all parties that day and by other members on subsequent days and weeks in the Parliament were heartfelt and sincere. I was also in the Windsor Hotel with many hundreds of people -- mothers and fathers, sons and daughters -- who had been affected. Even though the broadcast vision of the event did not come on from for a while we could hear, and it was impossible to be in that room, hear people crying out, and not feel like crying yourself. The apology had been a very long time coming and there was a great deal of emotion coming out that day.