How Helen Coonan voted compared to someone who believes that people seeking asylum in Australia, who arrive without a visa and particularly those who arrive by boat, should be held offshore in an Australian territory like Christmas Island while their application is processed (See the policy "For regional processing of asylum seekers" for more on processing asylum claims in other countries, like Nauru)

Division Helen Coonan Supporters vote Division outcome

25th Nov 2009, 4:05 PM – Senate Motions - Asylum Seekers - Stop excising territory

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young. This means that the motion was rejected.

The motion was:

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) the Federal Government’s ongoing commitment to continuing with the excised territories of Christmas Island, Cocos Islands and Ashmore Reef, and(Read about the Rudd government's decision to keep these islands outside of Australia's migration zone here. )

(ii) the sheer expense of running the offshore detention facility on Christmas Island;

(b) recognises concerns raised by the Australian Human Rights Commission, Amnesty International and the Refugee Council of Australia, to the limited access to sufficient health facilities, resources, and torture and trauma counselling services, due to the remoteness and isolation of the Christmas Island detention facilities from mainland Australia; and

(c) calls on the Government to end the policy of excision and bring all offshore arrivals to the mainland for processing.(Read more about the history of asylum in Australia, including offshore processing, here.)


absent No Not passed by a large majority

How "never voted" is worked out

Normally a person's votes count towards a score which is used to work out a simple phrase to summarise their position on a policy. However in this case Helen Coonan was absent during all divisions for this policy. So, it's impossible to say anything concrete other than that they have "never voted" on this policy.