Committee hands down ‘disgraceful’ recommendation to pass Extension of Powers Bill

Mar 25, 2022

Committee hands down ‘disgraceful’ recommendation to pass Extension of Powers Bill

Mar 25, 2022

The Community Support and Services committee today tabled their report and recommendation to pass the Member for Hill Shane Knuth said it was disgraceful that the committee had completely ignored substantial documented evidence and data to recommend the passing of the Bill and called on all MP’s to seriously consider its continued repercussions, before voting.

“I continue to have grave fears in the committee process. The committee has completed ignored the overwhelming evidence, testimony and submissions against the Bill and have basically rubber stamped the Governments desire to continue this unprecedented abuse of power, with the support of the opposition” Mr Knuth said.

“The reality is it makes no sense to extend these powers. Our health system, schools and small businesses cannot continue to operate in this environment.

“The Government must immediately remove the vaccination mandates permissible under this Bill, so ALL Queenslanders can return to work and life as normal.”

Mr Knuth said the Government was always quick to point out the support of organisations such as the Human Rights Commission and Council for Civil Liberties when it suited them but has disregarded their advice in their submissions NOT pass the Bill.

“These are highly regarded organisations whom the Government has continually refused to provide a set of criteria and evidence to justify the continuation of the extension of powers and the mandate, despite their repeated requests.

“The damage this Bill and the mandate has caused on small business, frontline health and education workers is far worse than the Covid pandemic and will takes years to recover from.

“The mental health issues that have arisen because of these powers and mandate will have far reaching and long-term impacts on all Queenslanders and our already struggling health system.

“It is disgraceful that none of this has been taken into account by this government and it is plain to see that this policy is NOT based on medical evidence but is purely politically driven.

“Despite an average of 17,000 new infections being reported each day, New Zealand has this week announced an end to vaccination mandates as have many other countries worldwide.”

“This is also clear evidence the mandate has little effect on the spread of the virus. It’s about time the Government listened to the people affected by this policy and immediately end the mandate.”

QLD Council for Civil Liberties Submission Extract

“It is for the Government to justify the continuation of these emergency powers. In our view statements made by the Health Minister in her speech when tabling the bill do NOT justify a continuation of the emergency powers.”

“The Governments repeated failures to provide a set of criteria by which it will decide to end the emergency other that a criterion which must result in it continuing so long as the virus is circulating in the community, must lead one to conclude that the government will keep the emergency powers for as long as it likes.”

“These are the most draconian powers that have ever existed in QLD, including in wartime. This is entirely unacceptable because it represents a clear and present danger to our civil liberties.”

“The average life is between 70 and 80 years. We have now deprived people of 1/40thof their full life. People are being deprived of a chunk of their lives which they will never get back.”  

“Time is ticking whilst we prevent people from being able to make their own decisions about what risks they must take or are prepared to take given their stage of life or the time that is available to them.”

QLD Human Rights Commission Submission Extract

“As a community, we have learnt about the impacts of quarantining conditions on people mental health, the human rights arising from public health directions that confine people to their homes through the mandating of vaccines.”

“Powers imposing such significant human rights limitations CANNOT continue without proper oversight, transparency and external review.”

“The commission recommends this Bill NOT proceed.”

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