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Parks - Anti-Protest Bill

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP  -  Thursday, 9 September 2021

Tags: Anti-Protest Laws, Protest, State Budget

Dr WOODRUFF - That was just one question. I have a follow-up question, about the Workplace Protection from Protestors Amendment Bill 2019, which is currently in draft form. I draw your attention to a letter from the previous secretary, John Whittington about this bill. He suggested that:

The tourism industry also be included in the definition of a business premises in part 5 of that act. That would have the effect of protecting the interests of this industry on reserve land as well as other locations around the state.

Have you or your Secretary had any conversations about the new draft legislation, and do you still want it to apply to tourism businesses such as the widely despised expressions of interest process, and the proponents who have put forward privatising our beautiful wilderness areas?

Mrs PETRUSMA - The bill is about stopping employees from going to work and business owners from being allowed to undertake their work. I'll have to ask the secretary whether he has had conversations.

Mr BAKER - I provided the minister no further advice than the advice that was provided by the former Secretary.

Dr WOODRUFF - A tourism business could, for example, include a cable car on kunanyi. We need to understand that there are people who want to stand up and protect these wilderness areas. If we start defining tourism as business premises, it would be actively trying to shut down people who are protecting wilderness values.

Mrs PETRUSMA - Your concerns are noted and I'm sure you'll have the opportunity when the bill is debated in parliament to make your concerns known.

Dr WOODRUFF - I hope as the Minister for Parks you'd be standing up for the wilderness values.

Mrs PETRUSMA - I will stand up for wilderness values. The values, as in the outstanding universal values, the cultural and heritage values. However, for business owners who are legitimately trying to conduct a business, we would need to look at that through the debate on the bill.