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Speech: Tribunals Amalgamation Bill 2014

Penny Wright 12 May 2015

Senator WRIGHT (South Australia) (12:36):  I rise to speak on the government's Tribunals Amalgamation Bill 2014, which provides the legislative framework for very significant reforms to Australia's merits review system. If enacted, this bill will amalgamate four separate specialist Commonwealth tribunal systems into one mega-administrative appeals tribunal.

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Cuts to legal sector must be stopped

I move that the Senate:

1.      notes the effects of Commonwealth funding uncertainty on the legal assistance sector, including the possible closure of community legal centres, staff loss, a reduction in services to clients and declining staff morale;

2.      acknowledges that, unless this uncertainty is addressed and funding restored, critical services directed at family violence, child protection, disability and mental health and services to regional, remote and Aboriginal land Torres Strait Islander communities may be irrevocably compromised;

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Old parties close ranks in Oil for Food inquiry

Senator WRIGHT (South Australia) (16:14): I rise as the chair of the Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee to speak to the tabling of this report into the work undertaken by the Australian Federal Police's oil for food task force. Firstly, I would like to place on record my thanks to the legal and constitutional affairs committee secretariat, so competently led by the committee secretary, Ms Sophie Dunstone, for their support to the committee throughout this inquiry.

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Remembering Malcolm Fraser

Penny Wright 24 Mar 2015

Senator WRIGHT (South Australia) (14:25):  I too stand today to offer a personal reflection on the life and legacy of former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser, and to offer my sincere condolences to his family and loved ones.

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