The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) has welcomed Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk’s announcement that laws dealing with dangerous protestors will be fast-tracked, and is calling on the State Parliament to consider both the Government and LNP Bills at the same time to provide the most comprehensive laws to protect Queenslanders.
QRC supports the Palaszczuk Government’s proposed Summary Offences and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 which seeks to deter people from using dangerous devices that deliberately increase the risk of injury to themselves, emergency services workers and members of the public.
QRC also supports the LNP’s Private Members Bill for harsher penalties for activists who break the law and commit illegal trespass, as proposed under the Criminal Code (Trespass Offences) Amendment Bill.
“There are merits in both Bills and there are merits in considering them together. For example, the LNP Bill also covers trespass as well as the use of dangerous devices which is dealt with in the Government’s Bill,” QRC Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane said.
“QRC believes the best outcome would be delivered for Queenslanders by considering both Bills at the same time, and as soon as possible. QRC has written to the Government requesting that both Bills be considered together.
“Queenslanders have had enough with reckless and law-breaking protestors who maliciously interfere with the lives of people going about their business.
“No one is arguing that the right to protest should ever be taken away. It is a key part of our democracy.
“But these anarchy-seeking protestors have crossed the line. They don’t want to make a point. They want to delay and disrupt the lives of Queenslanders, they want to destroy industries that employ hundreds of thousands of people, and they want to bully people who don’t agree with their views.
“There is nothing peaceful or safe about the tactics that extreme activists are using.
“The Queensland Parliament must move as quickly as possible to protect Queenslanders from reckless and dangerous protests. The laws should cover the range of devices and tactics that reckless activists are using, and they should be comprehensive to cover mine sites, ports and infrastructure including road and railways.
“QRC urges the Queensland Parliament to act in the best interests of all Queenslanders and debate the two Bills together at its earliest opportunity, so as to end the chaos being inflicted by dangerous, reckless and selfish protestors.”