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Qld Labor’s suspension of Human Rights Act to keep kids in watch houses a disgraceful dog act - Greens

The Greens have slammed the Labor State Government’s outrageous last-minute amendment dump this afternoon as a blight on democracy. 

The 57 pages of amendments moved this afternoon at the beginning of the 45-minute debate on the Child Protection (Offender Reporting and Offender Prohibition Order) and other Legislation Amendment Bill 2022 include suspending the Human Rights Act for the detention of children in adult police watch houses.

Michael Berkman:

“Labor’s blatant disregard for democracy and human rights is on full display today.

“Labor secretly prepared 57 pages of entirely unrelated amendments to a bill purportedly about child protection and is attempting to ram them through in 45 minutes of debate. 

“Disgraceful is an understatement. It is an absolute dog act to introduce amendments like this - that suspend a child as young as 10’s human rights when they’re in an adult police watch house - with no prior warning.

“The purpose of the Human Rights Act is to protect children from the specific harm that’s known to occur if they are placed in the same watch houses and prison facilities as adults. Labor is explicitly removing children’s rights to education, to healthcare, their cultural rights and protection against deprivation of liberty. 

“Labor suspended the Human Rights Act so that they could lock up more kids. Now they are suspending it again for the children being held in adult police watch houses as a consequence - children as young as 10 who haven’t even faced trial yet. 

“Labor’s response to being embarrassed by court findings that they’ve unlawfully detained children in watch houses is to strip those children of their rights under the law. 

“It’s not only a disgraceful move from Queensland Labor; it’s deeply sad that they have so little regard for vulnerable young people. 

“If Labor keeps suspending the Human Rights Act to lock up more children, the problem is only going to get worse.”

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