• Time to stop the greyhound industry

    26/08/2015: Debate speech in support of the disallowance motion of the Racing Administration Amendment (Race Field Information Fees) Regulation 2015

    A government of either persuasion should never support an industry that can only thrive and flourish on the backs of people suffering from psychological problems that cause suffering and a great deal of hardship for their families, friends and the community. A large proportion of the community who gamble are not people who gamble from time to time or for weekend recreation; they are people who are addicted and consumed by that addiction. These people pour a lot of money and income into the racing industry.

    The Animal Justice Party is concerned for the animals. The racing industry is driven to make as much money as possible from not only gamblers but also animals. Horses are overbred. These animals are whipped in every race. If any member of this House were to whip their dog in the street in the way that horses are whipped in every race, they would be prosecuted and sent to prison. The racing industry allows the abuse of animals. Abuse of an animal by whipping it is permitted in a race to drive the animal to run faster and to win, for financial gain. The racing industry has a very sinister side to it. It allows abuse of animals that in any other circumstance would cause a person to be brought before the courts and dealt with severely.

    Police investigators and the RSPCA are currently searching for and digging up the graves of former racing greyhounds all over the country. They are investigating claims of animals being tortured in the process of live baiting, which was a systemic practice in the greyhound racing industry. It is probably still occurring but has been driven underground. No matter the contribution an industry makes to the community, the Government should not support it if it engages in animal cruelty.

    Read the full speech HERE

  • 13/08/2015: Debate speech in supporting the Prohibition of Coal Seam Gas Bill

    The Animal Justice Party supports this responsible and important bill, the Petroleum (Onshore) Amendment (Prohibit Coal Seam Gas) Bill 2015. I bring to the attention of the House the fact that every sitting day one of the first statements made by the President is that we have a positive and complete duty to the welfare of the people and children of this State and of Australia.

    The Animal Justice Party has analysed all aspects of this industry. The industry demonstrates utter disregard for the health of citizens, including farmers and their children; and the environment, including the health and integrity of our land and water. Looking at the issue from the stance of the Animal Justice Party, there are studies by veterinarians that say very clearly that farm animals that graze on land under which this activity is occurring are already suffering from deleterious respiratory and alimentary problems. There are also impacts on wildlife living in the area.

    This sinister and deceptive form of mining noxiously creeps in under the very land that the people of New South Wales legitimately possess, enjoy, flourish on and derive from. It strikes at a fundamental right of all owners of land, be they farmers, wildlife carers, Indigenous people or many others. It strikes at the right to enjoy, be nourished by and be free from harm from our land and water. Moreover it strikes at our overwhelming, positive responsibility to ensure a safe and protected environment, free from noxious, harmful, poisonous substances that would deleteriously affect our children, the wild animals that enjoy these lands, and the animals that we introduce and rear on these lands, now and in the future.

    Read the full speech HERE

  • 12/08/2015: Adjournment speech on animal research in NSW

    Although the Animal Research Act of New South Wales stipulates that all animal research should be based on the three R’s—reduction, replacement and refinement—in theory it aims at minimising the use of animals in research.

    However, animal testing has created a multibillion dollar industry, encompassing the pharmaceutical and chemical industries, and university and government bodies. There is also a significant industry that manufactures cages and restraints. Humane Research Australia has identified that the trend over the past decade has been an increase rather than a decrease in animal testing. In 2013, in New South Wales 2,699,532 animals were used for research including more than 2,000 cats and dogs and 272,000 sheep. Of these, 0.53 per cent were in the “death as end point” category. The aim of experiments in this category requires the animals to die unassisted—that is, not euthanized, as death is “a critical measure of the experimental treatment”

    Read the full speech HERE

  • 04/02/2015: Adjournment speech on homelessness

    With my previous experience in the mental health and community service sectors it is clear that the two major causes of homelessness are mental illness and domestic violence.

    I raise the issue of homelessness in New South Wales as again the root causes and underpinnings of our society are being ignored. 2½ blocks from this Parliament several people are living in a terrible situation one block behind the courthouses where their walls are blankets and their protection is old doonas and filthy clothes. They are living in impoverished conditions right under our watch.

    Read the full speech HERE

  • 02/06/2015: My debate speech in opposition to the selling off of the poles and wires

    The Animal Justice Party opposes the Electricity Network Assets Authorised Transactions Bill 2015 and Electricity Retained Interest Corporations Bill 2015. We oppose these bills because the essentials of life—energy, water and air—should be always kept under the Government’s watch. The people of New South Wales have entrusted the Government to ensure that their health, warmth and access to the necessities of life can be guaranteed and in no way compromised, threatened or placed in danger through privatisation. With privatisation, a whole series of elements and issues come into the equation.

    Private companies will always only want to make a profit and flourish. There are many examples where that has happened at the expense of the public. For example, following the privatisation of electricity in Victoria those companies are facing very serious offences in the courts because their cost-cutting measures and cost-saving methods were important factors in causing some of the Victorian fires where people were burnt to death. This happened because those private companies were not interested in ensuring that the ethical standards required of government to provide essential environmental safeguards were not thwarted in any way.

    Another issue of concern in the current landscape is that we must move away from fossil fuels. This may be necessitated through important, intelligent and visionary government policies. No private company will adopt a policy to move away from fossil fuels while they remain the cheapest. Filthy, dirty energy causes enormous impacts on the environment and on human health. Indeed, the very nature of fossil fuel sourcing is deleterious to the environment, to human health and to animal wellbeing and welfare through poisoning of water, through the destruction of habitat and through adverse impacts on the environment in which they live. The Animal Justice Party opposes the bills on those grounds.

    Read the full speech HERE

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