Mark Dreyfus was also asked about the demands of Black Lives Matter protesters in Australia:
“We should start to see implementation of recommendations that have been on the table for, in some cases, decades.
You only had to listen to my colleague, my wonderful colleague, Pat Dodson in the Senate a couple of days ago to understand the frustration that First Nations people are experiencing, to understand his frustration. He was one of the Royal Commissioners in the Black Deaths in Custody Royal Commission, and you can only imagine how he must feel 30 years on to see that the recommendations that he made with his fellow commissioners are still unimplemented.”
This morning, the ABC is running this story:
‘Totally unacceptable’: Baby dies while mother was in police custody https://t.co/8mpDTXPdgR
June 11, 2020
It is also worth pointing out that Stuart Robert also said the debt collection would resume yesterday (something which seemed a little lost in all the ‘apology’ talk)
“Right now, just so that colleagues are aware in the House, 939,000 Australians have debts—over $5 billion worth—that the government lawfully has to collect across a whole range of programs. Governments of all persuasions have done this across the divide. The government, of course, have paused all debt collection across all programs as we work our way through the COVID crisis, but government will have to restart that debt collection. We will do it sensibly, we will do it engaging all people and we will do it in a very transparent manner. It is incumbent on us all, if we have constituents who are hurting or suffering, to bring them through to me. All colleagues know where I am. Give me a buzz and we will seek quickly to help you out.
Mark Dreyfus was on ABC radio this morning. He was asked about the prime minister’s apology for the ‘hurt or harm’ caused to anyone by how the government carried out robodebt.
Dreyfus says that the apology wasn’t enough:
“This was a qualified and partial apology for what was a shocking abuse of government power. Scott Morrison has never taken responsibility for it and yet, he started this when he was Social Services Minister, went on with it and expanded it when he was Treasurer and owned it as Prime Minister. I find it extraordinary that the best he can do is express, in this partial way, regret for a particular case.
What we need to know is what happened. We need to know when the Government knew that this scheme was illegal. We need to know why the Government persisted with this preying on the most vulnerable people in our community for years after it’s apparent they knew that it was illegal.”
More protests are planned for this weekend.
In NSW, police have declared the planned Black Lives Matter event ‘unauthorised’ and said they would be upholding the health control orders.
Scott Morrison, while saying there was “no slavery in Australia” (there was) has also said any further protesters should be fined. It’s going to get very, very messy.
It’s a sitting day and national cabinet, so aren’t we lucky ducks.
Yesterday, both the prime minister and the treasurer turned up the heat on states to re-open the borders (while also condemning Black Lives Matter protesters for setting back the easing of restrictions and ignoring any contradiction in what they were saying)
The closed states have mostly pointed to July as when they’ll be comfortable reopening. That’s what Scott Morrison says was part of the national cabinet plan. But because politics is back, so is the border open push.
Queensland, where a state election is to be held in October, is bearing the brunt of it. Even though the NT, WA and South Australia are also closed. So good times.
We’ll cover that and everything else which happens today. You’ve got Amy Remeikis with you for most of the day. There may not be enough coffee in the world for this Friday.