The majority voted against amendments introduced by Queensland Senator Malcolm Roberts (One Nation), which means they failed.


The Coalition was split on this vote, with South Australian Senator Alex Antic (Liberal) and Queensland Senators Gerard Renick (Liberal) and Matthew Canavan (Liberal National Party) voting "Yes" against the rest of the Liberal and National parties, who voted "No".

What were the amendments?

Senator Roberts explained that:

In proposing this bill, the government says the bill aims to secure jobs. My amendments on sheet 1768 go to the heart of ensuring job security and protecting workers' rights. To ensure job security, my amendments on sheet 1768 ensure that unjustified vaccine discrimination is stamped out in employment.

The original bill inserts breastfeeding, intersex status and gender identity as attributes that the Fair Work Act protects from discrimination. These amendments copy that approach and simply add COVID-19 vaccination as an attribute protected from discrimination. The protection is still subject to the limits imposed on the other discrimination grounds in the Fair Work Act. An employer, for example, will not be in breach of the antidiscrimination grounds where the employer can prove, as they should have to, that it is a genuine and reasonable requirement of the position. These amendments are reasonable. In their approach, they are not radical because they use and simply extend the existing mechanisms in the Fair Work Act.

Amendment text

(1) Schedule 1, item 426, page 116 (before line 10), before the definition of gender identity, insert:

COVID-19 vaccination status means the status of a person relating to whether, and to what extent, the person has been vaccinated against the coronavirus known as COVID-19 (including any subsequent variants of that virus).

(2) Schedule 1, item 427, page 116 (line 17), after "intersex status,", insert "COVID-19 vaccination status,".

(3) Schedule 1, item 429, page 117 (line 3), after "intersex status,", insert "COVID-19 vaccination status,".

(4) Schedule 1, item 432, page 118 (line 3), after "intersex status,", insert "COVID-19 vaccination status,".

(5) Schedule 1, page 118 (after line 3), after item 432, insert:

432A Paragraph 351(2)(a)

Before "not unlawful", insert "for action taken other than because of a person's COVID-19 vaccination status—".

(6) Schedule 1, item 433, page 118 (line 6), after "intersex status,", insert "COVID-19 vaccination status,".

(7) Schedule 1, item 436, page 118 (line 23), after "intersex status,", insert "COVID-19 vaccination status,".

(8) Schedule 1, item 437, page 119 (line 23), omit "or intersex status,", substitute ", intersex status or COVID-19 vaccination status".

Votes Not passed by a large majority

There were 2 rebellions in this division.

  • Alex Antic voted Yes against the majority of the Liberal Party.
  • Gerard Rennick voted Yes against the majority of the Liberal Party.
Party Votes
Australian Greens (100% turnout) 0 Yes 12 No
Penny Allman-Payne Queensland No
Dorinda Cox WA No
Mehreen Faruqi NSW No
Sarah Hanson-Young SA No
Nick McKim Tasmania No
Barbara Pocock SA No
Janet Rice Victoria No
David Shoebridge NSW No
Jordon Steele-John WA No
Lidia Thorpe Victoria No
Larissa Waters Queensland No
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania No
Australian Labor Party (80% turnout) 0 Yes 20 No
Tim Ayres NSW No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania No
Carol Brown Tasmania No
Anthony Chisholm Queensland No
Raff Ciccone Victoria No
Patrick Dodson WA No
Katy Gallagher ACT No
Nita Green Queensland No
Karen Grogan SA No
Jenny McAllister NSW No
Malarndirri McCarthy NT No
Deborah O'Neill NSW No
Fatima Payman WA No
Helen Polley Tasmania No
Louise Pratt WA No
Tony Sheldon NSW No
Marielle Smith SA No
Glenn Sterle WA No
Linda White Victoria No
Penny Wong SA No
Don Farrell SA Absent
Jana Stewart Victoria Absent
Anne Urquhart Tasmania Absent
Jess Walsh Victoria Absent
Murray Watt Queensland Absent
Jacinta Nampijinpa Price NT Country Liberal Party Absent
Andrew McLachlan SA Deputy President Yes
David Pocock ACT Independent No
Jacqui Lambie Network (0% turnout) Absent
Jacqui Lambie Tasmania Absent
Tammy Tyrrell Tasmania Absent
Liberal National Party (50% turnout) 1 Yes 0 No
Matthew Canavan Queensland Yes
James McGrath Queensland Absent
Liberal Party (29% turnout) 2 Yes 5 No
Alex Antic SA Yes
Gerard Rennick Queensland Yes
Wendy Askew Tasmania No
Simon Birmingham SA No
Michaelia Cash WA No
Sarah Henderson Victoria No
Linda Reynolds WA No
Andrew Bragg NSW Absent
Slade Brockman WA Absent
Claire Chandler Tasmania Absent
Richard Colbeck Tasmania Absent
Jonathon Duniam Tasmania Absent
David Fawcett SA Absent
Hollie Hughes NSW Absent
Jane Hume Victoria Absent
Kerrynne Liddle SA Absent
Jim Molan NSW Absent
Matt O'Sullivan WA Absent
James Paterson Victoria Absent
Marise Payne NSW Absent
Anne Ruston SA Absent
Paul Scarr Queensland Absent
Dean Smith WA Absent
David Van Victoria Absent
National Party (25% turnout) 0 Yes 1 No
Bridget McKenzie Victoria No
Ross Cadell NSW Absent
Perin Davey NSW Absent
Susan McDonald Queensland Absent
Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party (50% turnout) 1 Yes 0 No
Malcolm Roberts Queensland Yes
Pauline Hanson Queensland Absent
Sue Lines WA President No
Ralph Babet Victoria United Australia Party Yes
Totals (61% turnout) 6 Yes – 40 No