Will Hodgman

Premier of Tasmania

17 November 2017

Elise Archer, Minister for Justice

Labor need to reveal position on suspended sentence amendments

Labor need to stop playing silly political games and state their position on our amended suspended sentence legislation.

As I said yesterday, we are working closely with Legislative Council members to deliver these important reforms and have been encouraged by the constructive approach of independent members who obviously want to get the best outcome for the Tasmanian community.

That is why we proposed a number of amendments to allow the alternative sentencing measures to become available and the abolition of suspended sentences to be deferred pending an assessment of uptake of the new alternatives.

Labor’s approach has been very different.

Behind closed doors, Labor’s position has been made very clear to the Government –their position has not changed and they do not support the legislation.

Yet publically, Labor are playing silly political word games and pretending they are open to change, with Sarah Lovell saying she wanted the Government to ‘genuinely consult’ on the legislation.

The facts are, we have been genuinely consulting, but Labor has refused to change.

It’s time for Labor to stop the games and put their position on the record once and for all- do they support the Government’s amendments, or not?

Meanwhile, we will continue to work with the Legislative Council to pass important reforms that benefit the Tasmanian community.

This week alone we have already passed several important Bills, such as our legislation to provide a fresh Glenorchy City Council election early next year, and reforms that make it easier for victims of sexual offences when giving evidence.

Important progress has also been made on abolishing suspended sentences as stated previously, and providing better protection for family violence victims through reforms such as electronic monitoring.

We are getting on with the job- Labor are delaying and scrambling to find a position on important issues.

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