How Brian Burston voted compared to someone who believes that there should be more independent access to detention centres and more information provided about the management of asylum seekers under Australian government policy, including the interception of boats at sea

Division Brian Burston Supporters vote Division outcome

5th Dec 2017, 5:56 PM – Senate Regulations and Determinations - Migration Legislation Amendment (2017 Measures No. 4) Regulations 2017 - Disallow

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to disallow Migration Legislation Amendment (2017 Measures No. 4) Regulations 2017, which means they'll no longer have any legal force.

What did the Regulations do?

Greens Senator Nick McKim (Tas) explained that:

This regulation which we are seeking to disallow would provide the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection with sweeping new powers on top of what the Australian Greens already consider to be a far too broad range of powers, which have been exercised continually in an unreasonable way by the minister.

The changes that the minister is proposing to make, in broad terms, would allow the immigration department to detain people, potentially indefinitely, on the basis of criminal conduct that has not been proven or even tried, on the basis of behaviour that's considered by the department to have endangered or threatened another person extending, potentially, to bullying and online vilification, and because of inconsistencies in people's names on identity documents issued by any Commonwealth, state or territory government authority or official, or failures to update any name changes in those documents.

See the explanatory memorandum for more information about what these Regulations did.

No Yes Passed by a small majority

8th Feb 2017, 4:03 PM – Senate Documents - Resettlement of Refugees - Order for the Production of Documents

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The majority voted in favour of a motion introduced by Greens Senator Nick McKim (Tas), which means it was successful.

This motion asked for the documents to be produced that relate to the agreement between Australia and the USA for the potential resettlement of refugees currently on Manus Island and Nauru, which President Donald Trump has described as a "dumb deal".

Motion

That there be laid on the table by the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, on 15 February 2017, the agreement between Australia and the United States of America announced on 13 November 2016 regarding the potential resettlement to the United States of refugees on Manus Island and Nauru.

No Yes Passed by a small majority

12th Sep 2016, 4:48 PM – Senate Committees - Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee - Nauru & Manus Island centres

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The majority voted in favour of a motion, which means it was successful. Motions like this don't have legal force but demonstrate the opinion of the Senate.

Motion text

(1) That the following matter be referred to the Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee for inquiry and report by the last sitting day in March 2017:

The serious allegations of abuse, self-harm and neglect of asylum seekers in relation to the Nauru Regional Processing Centre, and any like allegations in relation to the Manus Regional Processing Centre, with particular reference to:

(a) the factors that have contributed to the abuse and self-harm alleged to have occurred;

(b) how notifications of abuse and self-harm are investigated;

(c) the obligations of the Commonwealth Government and contractors relating to the treatment of asylum seekers, including the provision of support, capability and capacity building to local authorities;

(d) the provision of support services for asylum seekers who have been alleged or been found to have been subject to abuse, neglect or self-harm in the centres or within the community;

(e) the role an independent children’s advocate could play in ensuring the rights and interests of unaccompanied minors are protected,

(f) the effect of Part 6 of the Australian Border Force Act 2015;

(g) attempts by the Commonwealth Government to negotiate third country resettlement of asylum seekers and refugees;

(h) additional measures that could be implemented to expedite third country resettlement of asylum seekers and refugees within the centres; and

(i) any other related matters.

(2) That the committee be granted access to all inquiry submissions and documents of the preceding committee relating to its inquiry into the conditions and treatment of asylum seekers and refugees at the regional processing centres in the Republic of Nauru and Papua New Guinea.

No Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

1st Sep 2016, 12:45 PM – Senate Motions - Immigration Detention - Nauru documents

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The majority voted in favour of a motion introduced by Labor Senator Lisa Singh, which means it was successful.

These motions have no legal force, but do show the opinion of the Senate.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) a large cache of documents has been made public regarding the treatment of asylum seekers including children on Nauru, and

(ii) these documents contain concerning reports of alleged abuse; and

(b) call upon the Australian Government:

(i) to reveal whether these serious and disturbing allegations of abuse have been investigated and the outcomes of those investigations, and

(ii) to appoint an Independent Children's Advocate backed by adequate resources and statutory powers to ensure the rights and interests of children are protected.

No Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

31st Aug 2016, 4:23 PM – Senate Motions - Immigration Detention - Royal Commission

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Greens Senator Nick McKim, which means it was unsuccessful.

The motion called for a Royal Commission into Australia’s immigration detention facilities to be established.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) acknowledges the damage done to men, women and children by offshore detention on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea and Nauru as revealed to the Parliament through Senate inquiries, independent government reports and a recent leak of more than 2,000 incident reports from Nauru; and

(b) calls on the Government to establish a Royal Commission into Australia’s immigration detention facilities, including those on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea and Nauru.

absent Yes (strong) Not passed by a modest majority

How "voted strongly against" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 2 0 100
MP absent 1 25 50
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 4 0 40
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 0 0 0
Total: 25 190

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 25 / 190 = 13%.

And then