NSW Labor has urged Premier Barry O’Farrell to distance himself from the Federal Liberal Government’s plans to water down the Racial Discrimination Act – as well as Attorney General George Brandis’ offensive comments that “people have a right to be bigots you know”.
The Federal Liberal Government is moving to remove Section 18C of the Act. This provides protection to individuals from offensive behaviour because of race, colour, national or ethnic origin.
In Parliament yesterday, the NSW Opposition moved a motion calling on all MPs to “renounce any move by the Abbott Government to adversely change Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975”.
Barry O’Farrell and the Liberal and National Parties voted together to kill the motion.
“Barry O’Farrell needs to stand up to his Liberal Party colleagues in Canberra – instead of rubberstamping their plans to tear down protections against racial discrimination,” Shadow Minister for Citizenship and Communities Guy Zangari said.
“These laws are a crucial cog of our indigenous and multicultural society – and the right of every human being to live free from racial vilification and harassment.
Mr Zangari also called on the Premier to condemn Attorney General George Brandis for his comment that people have a right to be bigots.
“George Brandis’ comment that people have a right to be bigots in Australia was utterly appalling – but it obviously reflects the views of the modern-day Liberal Party,” Mr Zangari said.
Published in Indian Magazine, Australia