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An historic day in the Senate

Dear friend,

What an historic day it has been today in the Australian Senate.

The last parliamentary sitting week before the midwinter break has seen your Greens team continue to achieve great outcomes for all Australians who want a cleaner, healthier, smarter and fairer society.

A short time ago I walked into the Senate to vote into law Australia's biggest ever public investment in clean and renewable energy - and one of the great achievements of the Greens in this parliament in building a clean energy economy.

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Amnesty International’s call for time limits and detention centre closures should be heeded

The Australian Greens have today urged the Gillard government to follow the recommendations of Amnesty International's report to impose time limits on detention and shut down remote detention centres.

"If we want to stop already fragile people from harming themselves or taking their lives, the only way to do it is by closing detention centres on Christmas Island and elsewhere," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young.

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Greens to send Murray Darling Basin draft plan to Senate inquiry

 

The Greens have today announced they will move for a Senate inquiry into the Murray Darling Basin Authority's draft plan when Parliament resumes next week so parliamentarians can scrutinise what is being proposed.

 

"We want an answer to the basic question why did the MDBA choose 2,750 GL when the science says the river system needs at least 4,000 GL," Greens' water spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said.

 

"The basin authority has yet to justify that figure.

 

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‘Daily Tele’ misses a chance to tell truth about community release of asylum seekers

The Daily Telegraph has blown an opportunity to tell its readers the reality of what happens when asylum seekers are released into the community, the Australian Greens said today.

"Last year the paper showed the dangers asylum seekers faced under the Malaysian solution, but this year it has given a false picture of community release programs here on shore," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said.

"That's a real disappointment because there are so many myths about asylum seekers which continue to be perpetuated.

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$1 billion on detention centres could be better spent on dental care

The $1 billion Australian taxpayers are spending on private company Serco's detention centre contract would be better off going toward a public denticare scheme, the Australian Greens said today.

"Letting detainees live in the community after initial health and security checks while their protection claims are assessed is 90 percent cheaper and 100 percent fairer compared to a detention centre," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said.

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Labor lurches to the right and loses touch

Opening the Labor Party conference, Julia Gillard told her party faithful she wanted the ALP to be the party that says "yes to the future".

Yet the Prime Minister spent the next three days advocating for the resurrection of the old, tired conservative policies of John Howard. On policies covering asylum seekers, uranium and same-sex marriage, Labor's leader backed the stance of the former ultra-conservative Liberal prime minister.

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Australians pay as Labor digs a hole for itself on tax

The "year of decision and delivery" is quickly coming to an end and the Prime Minister is determined to get the government's mining tax passed through the House of Representative this week before the summer break of Parliament. The Senate would then deal with the legislation when Parliament resumes in 2012.

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