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Speech: Young People and Covid-19

Mehreen Faruqi 25 Aug 2020

I rise to speak on the impact COVID has had on young people and the future they face. It's hard to overstate how rapidly and dramatically COVID-19 has changed the world for young people. But we must acknowledge that neither they nor the pandemic are the cause of the greatest challenges they face. Those have been created for them by older generations. A recent Betoota Advocate headline attributes a fake quote to the Prime Minister: 'The sooner young people understand they're effed, the sooner they'll be happy.' It's hard to argue with.

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Speech: Farewell to Richard di Natale

Richard, over the last few weeks I've seen you on Zoom and I've seen a few videos of yours on Facebook. I must say that you look happier, more relaxed and carefree than I have seen you look in the last few years. It's made it very clear to me that the decision you made to step out of parliamentary politics was absolutely the right one at this time. And you deserve to be relaxed and carefree after dedicating a decade of your life to our party and the broader progressive movement as a Greens senator—not to mention years of service before that to the party.

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Speech: Live exports on the MV Al Kuwait

The MV Al Kuwait that departed Fremantle in June was a horrific journey. According to the Independent Observersummary report, up to 5,000 of the sheep on board experienced severe or serious heat stress, with laboured breathing, open-mouth panting and appearances of being stressed or in extreme discomfort; 28 sheep died, and many more were hospitalised. We knew this was going to happen. We knew this was inevitable.

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Question time: universities

Senator FARUQI (New South Wales) (14:18): My question is to the Minister representing the Minister for Education. At least 16 members of the government, including the Prime Minister, went to uni while it was free, but your latest cruel, hypocritical plan will hurt students by hiking fees and cuts up to $900 million from teaching funding, including from STEM and nursing. The experts agree it's an unfixable mess. It won't create enough new places. It punishes struggling students.

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Speech: Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency Amendment (Prohibiting Academic Cheating Services) Bill 2019

I rise on behalf of the Greens to speak to the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency Amendment (Prohibiting Academic Cheating Services) Bill 2019. This is indeed a serious issue. I thank the stakeholders across the sector for the time they've taken to engage with the bill throughout the process. In recognition for the need for stronger protections against commercial contract cheating operations, the Greens will not oppose this legislation.

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Speech: National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Amendment (Governance and Other Matters) Bill 2020

I rise to make a contribution to the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Amendment (Governance and Other Matters) Bill 2020. The bill makes substantial changes to the Australian Skills Quality Authority's governance structure, establishes the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Advisory Council and revises arrangements for data sharing and access pertaining to the National Centre for Vocational Education Research. The Greens will not oppose this bill, but we are not without concern.

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Speech: Paid Pandemic Leave

I rise to speak to the Australian Greens Fair Work Amendment (COVID-19) Bill 2020 that I introduced in the Senate during the last sitting. This bill will protect all workers during the crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are living through unprecedented times—I don't know how many people have said that or how many times, but it is true: COVID-19 is drastically changing our way of life. This is a global health crisis with no-one left untouched by its impacts. This is a difficult time for all of us, there's no doubt. This is a strange time. This is not a normal time.

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