The last six weeks in Canberra have been more than disappointing and, many times I have personally found them quite shocking.
When I was first elected, I sought the support of the people of Moreton so that I could go to Canberra to do noble things, on your behalf. My job is to look out for you, so I am very sorry that the last few weeks of horrible announcements coming out Coalition offices have been a demoralising low point in our democracy.
The revelations about the disgusting behaviour of several coalition staffers; an allegation of rape in a Minister’s office; an allegation of sexual assault by the Attorney General; and an LNP backbencher from Queensland harassing women online – have combined to lessen the standing of our parliament in the eyes of ordinary Australians.
If we want to be a country where women are safe at work, at home, on the street, then we have to take these complaints seriously. This is especially important when these horrible matters take place right in the heart of our democracy.
The Prime Minister needs to stop trying to politically manage the situation. It’s been five long weeks since the allegations that started with Brittany Higgins’ terrible story came to light. And since that time, there has been little sign of leadership from Mr Morrison. He has to start to deal with the real problem that women, not only in Parliament House, but across Australia, experience sexual harassment in the workplace. Every Australian workplace must be safe for every Australian worker. Nobody should be subjected to sexual harassment in our workplaces.
Scott Morrison could show some leadership, starting with implementing the full 55 recommendations in Kate Jenkins Respect@Work Report and reintroducing the Women’s Budget Statement.