House of Representatives on 4/12/2019
STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS – Asylum Seekers
Speaker :Burns, Josh, MP
Mr BURNS (Macnamara) (13:45): It had been 90 years since this place passed a bill in the House of Representatives that didn’t have the support of the government, 90 years before this place passed a simple bill that said that, if you need medical care and you are under the care of the Australian government, you can get that care. It was the medevac legislation. What a disgrace it is that the Senate, under a secret dodgy deal, has just repealed the medevac legislation.
When that bill was passed through this place, what was the response of the government? It wasn’t to respond with facts. It wasn’t to respond with reason and argument. It was to respond with fear. All of them on that side of the House came back with fear because that is all they have. They don’t have facts in the debate. When the medevac bill passed the parliament, their response was to spend $185 million to open the Christmas Island detention centre, because that was apparently the response this country needed. How many people were put inside the Christmas Island detention centre? There was not one until a family of four were dragged there in the middle of the night.
This government is a government without a vision. It’s a government without an agenda. Today it confirmed it is a government without a heart. This medevac bill was a baseline of decency. The government has trampled all over it and they should all be ashamed of themselves.