The majority voted against commending the artists who have protested against Transfield Holdings' sponsorship of the Biennale of Sydney.

Why protest Transfield's sponsorship?

Transfield Holdings is a shareholder in Transfield Services, which is being paid $1.22 billion by the Australian Government to run offshore detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru. By opposing Transfield Holdings' sponsorship, the artists are protesting against the government's mandatory detention policy.

Text of the motion

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) Transfield Holdings is a major sponsor of the 19th Biennale of Sydney,

(ii) Transfield Holdings is a shareholder in Transfield Services,

(iii) Transfield Services is being paid $1.22 billion by the Australian Government to run offshore detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru,

(iv) five artists have pulled out of the Biennale of Sydney because of Transfield’s links to Australia’s cruel mandatory detention policies, and

(v) 28 Biennale artists have written to the Biennale board, urging it to cut ties with Transfield and to find new sponsors; and

(b) commends the courage and commitment to human rights of the Biennale artists who have both written to the board requesting new sponsors and the artists who have pulled out of the Biennale of Sydney.

Votes Not passed by a large majority

Nobody rebelled against their party.

Party Votes
Australian Greens (89% turnout) 8 Yes 0 No
Richard Di Natale Victoria Yes
Sarah Hanson-Young SA Yes
Christine Milne Tasmania Yes
Lee Rhiannon NSW Yes
Rachel Siewert WA Yes
Larissa Waters Queensland Yes
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania Yes
Penny Wright SA Yes
Scott Ludlam WA Absent
Australian Labor Party (90% turnout) 0 Yes 27 No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania No
Mark Bishop WA No
Carol Brown Tasmania No
Doug Cameron NSW No
Kim Carr Victoria No
Jacinta Collins Victoria No
Sam Dastyari NSW No
Don Farrell SA No
Mark Furner Queensland No
Alex Gallacher SA No
Sue Lines WA No
Joe Ludwig Queensland No
Kate Lundy ACT No
Gavin Marshall Victoria No
Anne McEwen SA No
Jan McLucas Queensland No
Claire Moore Queensland No
Deborah O'Neill NSW No
Nova Peris NT No
Helen Polley Tasmania No
Louise Pratt WA No
Lisa Singh Tasmania No
Ursula Stephens NSW No
Glenn Sterle WA No
Lin Thorp Tasmania No
Mehmet Tillem Victoria No
Anne Urquhart Tasmania No
Stephen Conroy Victoria Absent
John Faulkner NSW Absent
Penny Wong SA Absent
Nigel Scullion NT Country Liberal Party Absent
John Madigan Victoria Democratic Labor Party Yes
Stephen Parry Tasmania Deputy President No
Liberal Party (56% turnout) 0 Yes 15 No
Christopher Back WA No
Cory Bernardi SA No
Simon Birmingham SA No
David Bushby Tasmania No
Sean Edwards SA No
David Fawcett SA No
Mitch Fifield Victoria No
David Johnston WA No
Helen Kroger Victoria No
Ian Macdonald Queensland No
Michael Ronaldson Victoria No
Anne Ruston SA No
Scott Ryan Victoria No
Zed Seselja ACT No
Dean Smith WA No
Eric Abetz Tasmania Absent
Sue Boyce Queensland Absent
George Brandis Queensland Absent
Michaelia Cash WA Absent
Richard Colbeck Tasmania Absent
Mathias Cormann WA Absent
Alan Eggleston WA Absent
Concetta Fierravanti-Wells NSW Absent
Bill Heffernan NSW Absent
Brett Mason Queensland Absent
Marise Payne NSW Absent
Arthur Sinodinos NSW Absent
National Party (80% turnout) 0 Yes 4 No
Ron Boswell Queensland No
Bridget McKenzie Victoria No
Barry O'Sullivan Queensland No
John Williams NSW No
Fiona Nash NSW Absent
Nick Xenophon SA Nick Xenophon Team Absent
John Hogg Queensland President Absent
Totals (74% turnout) 9 Yes – 47 No