The majority voted against amendments (2), (3), (6) to (10) and (12) to (14) introduced by NSW Senator David Shoebridge (Greens), which means they did not succeed.

What does this amendment do?

Senator Shoebridge explained that:

One of the core recommendations of the Moss review was to expand the category of people to whom whistleblowers can go to seek professional assistance, to expand it unambiguously to the legal profession and appropriate legal advice and also to empower whistleblowers to make their disclosures appropriately and with the appropriate advice to comply with the PID Act [Public Interest Disclosure Act] and any other requirements. These amendments seek to expand the category of persons to whom whistleblowers can go to for professional assistance from not just lawyers, and in some cases government approved lawyers, to Australian legal practitioners or their relevant union representative.

As we know, many public servants who are members of the CPSU or another union go to their union to seek advice on how they can step through a really hard workplace issue. You can't think of a harder workplace issue in many instances than trying to work out how to do a PID Act disclosure properly. The Greens firmly believe that appropriately skilled union officials should be available to whistleblowers to help them step through the complexity of making a PID Act disclosure.

Amendment text

(2) Schedule 1, page 30 (before line 21), before item 51, insert:

50B Subsection 26(1) (table item 4, column 1)

Omit “Legal practitioner”, substitute “Professional assistance”.

50C Subsection 26(1) (cell at table item 4, column 2)

Repeal the cell, substitute:

(a) An Australian legal practitioner; or

(b) a union representative.

(3) Schedule 1, item 63, page 36 (line 9), omit “legal practitioner”, substitute “professional assistance”.

(6) Schedule 2, item 3, page 51 (line 2), omit “legal practitioner”, substitute “professional assistance”.

(7) Schedule 2, item 3, page 52 (line 31), omit “legal practitioner”, substitute “professional assistance”.

(8) Schedule 2, item 6, page 53 (line 23), omit “ legal practitioner ”, substitute “ professional assistance ”.

(9) Schedule 2, item 6, page 53 (after line 24), after the definition of legal practitioner disclosure in section 8, insert:

union has the same meaning as in the Workplace Health and Safety Act 2011.

(10) Schedule 2, page 53 (after line 28), after item 8, insert:

8A Section 25

Omit: a disclosure to an Australian legal practitioner for purposes connected with the above matters.

Substitute: a disclosure to an Australian legal practitioner or union representative for purposes connected with the above matters.

(12) Schedule 2, page 54 (after line 21), after item 16, insert:

16A Section 67 (heading)

Omit “ legal practitioners ”, substitute “ professional assistance ”.

Votes Not passed by a modest majority

Nobody rebelled against their party.

Party Votes
Australian Greens (100% turnout) 11 Yes 0 No
Penny Allman-Payne Queensland Yes
Dorinda Cox WA Yes
Mehreen Faruqi NSW Yes
Sarah Hanson-Young SA Yes
Nick McKim Tasmania Yes
Barbara Pocock SA Yes
Janet Rice Victoria Yes
David Shoebridge NSW Yes
Jordon Steele-John WA Yes
Larissa Waters Queensland Yes
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania Yes
Australian Labor Party (68% turnout) 0 Yes 17 No
Tim Ayres NSW No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania No
Carol Brown Tasmania No
Anthony Chisholm Queensland No
Don Farrell SA No
Karen Grogan SA No
Jenny McAllister NSW No
Malarndirri McCarthy NT 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
Anne Urquhart Tasmania No
Jess Walsh Victoria No
Murray Watt Queensland No
Raff Ciccone Victoria Absent
Patrick Dodson WA Absent
Katy Gallagher ACT Absent
Nita Green Queensland Absent
Deborah O'Neill NSW Absent
Jana Stewart Victoria Absent
Linda White Victoria Absent
Penny Wong SA Absent
Jacinta Nampijinpa Price NT Country Liberal Party Absent
Andrew McLachlan SA Deputy President Absent
David Pocock ACT Independent No
Lidia Thorpe Victoria Independent Absent
Jacqui Lambie Network (0% turnout) Absent
Jacqui Lambie Tasmania Absent
Tammy Tyrrell Tasmania Absent
Liberal National Party (0% turnout) Absent
Matthew Canavan Queensland Absent
James McGrath Queensland Absent
Liberal Party (17% turnout) 0 Yes 4 No
Michaelia Cash WA No
Jonathon Duniam Tasmania No
Sarah Henderson Victoria No
Anne Ruston SA No
Alex Antic SA Absent
Wendy Askew Tasmania Absent
Simon Birmingham SA Absent
Andrew Bragg NSW Absent
Slade Brockman WA Absent
Claire Chandler Tasmania Absent
Richard Colbeck Tasmania Absent
David Fawcett SA Absent
Hollie Hughes NSW Absent
Jane Hume Victoria Absent
Maria Kovacic NSW Absent
Kerrynne Liddle SA Absent
Matt O'Sullivan WA Absent
James Paterson Victoria Absent
Marise Payne NSW Absent
Gerard Rennick Queensland Absent
Linda Reynolds WA Absent
Paul Scarr Queensland Absent
Dean Smith WA Absent
David Van Victoria Absent
National Party (25% turnout) 0 Yes 1 No
Ross Cadell NSW No
Perin Davey NSW Absent
Susan McDonald Queensland Absent
Bridget McKenzie Victoria Absent
Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party (0% turnout) Absent
Pauline Hanson Queensland Absent
Malcolm Roberts Queensland Absent
Sue Lines WA President Absent
Ralph Babet Victoria United Australia Party Absent
Totals (45% turnout) 11 Yes – 23 No