Summary

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The majority voted against two Greens amendments that were introduced by Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, which means they were unsuccessful.

What did the amendments do?

Senator Hanson-Young explained what the two amendments do like this:

These amendments allow for media access to these facilities, access for the Human Rights Commission and access by the Commonwealth Ombudsman. Both the Human Rights Commission and the Commonwealth Ombudsman have access to Australian based detention centres, and those on Christmas Island. This set of amendments gives those two bodies access to any other facility in relation to the offshore network. That, of course, means those on Manus Island and Nauru.

The element of allowing journalists to access these facilities is absolutely important. ... [W]e have the Abbott government saying they are all big supporters of free speech and that they have nothing to hide. Well, if you have nothing to hide, open the gates and let the media in.

Amendment text

Greens amendment (3):

(3) Schedule 1, page 3 (before line 4), before item 1, insert:

1A Subsection 198AB(2)

Repeal the subsection, substitute:

(2) The only conditions for the exercise of the power under subsection (1) are:

(a) that the Minister thinks that it is in the national interest to designate the country to be a regional processing country; and

(b) that subsection (4A) has been complied with.

1B After subsection 198AB(4)

Insert:

(4A) The Minister must not designate a country to be a regional processing country unless the country has given Australia assurances, in writing, to the effect that the country will allow the following persons or bodies reasonable access to unauthorised maritime arrivals who have been taken to the regional processing country under section 198AD:

(a) the Australian Human Rights Commission;

(b) the Commonwealth Ombudsman;

(c) journalists (within the meaning of the Evidence Act 1995).

(4B) The assurances referred to in subsection (4A) need not be legally binding.

Note: However, the Minister must revoke a designation if the country does not comply with those assurances, see subsection (5A).

1C After subsection 198AB(5)

Insert:

(5A) If:

(a) the Minister designates a country under subsection (1); and

(b) the country has given written assurances under subsection (4A); and

(c) the Minister becomes aware that the country has not complied, or is not complying, with those assurances;

the Minister must revoke the designation.

Greens amendment (5):

(5) Schedule 1, page 4 (after line 5), at the end of the Schedule, add:

2 Application—written assurances relating to access

The amendments made to the Migration Act 1958 by items 1A, 1B and 1C apply in relation to the designation of a country as a regional processing centre on or after the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent.

3 Application and transitional—regional processing countries designated before Royal Assent

(1) This item applies if the Minister designated a country to be a regional processing country under subsection 198AB(1) of the Migration Act 1958 before the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent.

(2) As soon as practicable, but no later than 3 months after the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent, the Minister must revoke the designation unless the country has given assurances, in writing, to the effect that the country will allow the following persons or bodies reasonable access to unauthorised maritime arrivals who have been taken to the regional processing country under section 198AD of that Act:

(a) the Australian Human Rights Commission;

(b) the Commonwealth Ombudsman;

(c) journalists (within the meaning of the Evidence Act 1995).

(3) If the assurances under subitem (2) are given, subsection 198AB(5A) of the Migration Act 1958, as amended by this Schedule, applies in relation to the designation on and after the day the assurances are received, as if the designation were made under section 198AB of that Act as amended by this Act.

Votes Not passed by a modest majority

Nobody rebelled against their party.

Party Votes
Australian Greens (100% turnout) 10 Yes 0 No
Richard Di Natale Victoria Yes
Sarah Hanson-Young SA Yes
Scott Ludlam WA Yes
Christine Milne Tasmania Yes
Lee Rhiannon NSW Yes
Janet Rice Victoria Yes
Rachel Siewert WA Yes
Larissa Waters Queensland Yes
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania Yes
Penny Wright SA Yes
Australian Labor Party (75% turnout) 0 Yes 18 No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania No
Carol Brown Tasmania No
Joe Bullock WA No
Doug Cameron NSW No
Kim Carr Victoria No
Jacinta Collins Victoria No
Alex Gallacher SA No
Katy Gallagher ACT No
Chris Ketter Queensland No
Sue Lines WA No
Joe Ludwig Queensland No
Jan McLucas Queensland No
Claire Moore Queensland No
Deborah O'Neill NSW No
Nova Peris NT No
Lisa Singh Tasmania No
Glenn Sterle WA No
Anne Urquhart Tasmania No
Stephen Conroy Victoria Absent
Sam Dastyari NSW Absent
Jenny McAllister NSW Absent
Anne McEwen SA Absent
Helen Polley Tasmania Absent
Penny Wong SA Absent
Ricky Muir Victoria Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party Absent
Nigel Scullion NT Country Liberal Party Absent
Gavin Marshall Victoria Deputy President Absent
Bob Day SA Family First Party Absent
Glenn Lazarus Queensland Independent Yes
Jacqui Lambie Tasmania Independent Absent
John Madigan Victoria Independent Absent
Nick Xenophon SA Independent Absent
David Leyonhjelm NSW Liberal Democratic Party Absent
Liberal National Party (100% turnout) 0 Yes 2 No
Matthew Canavan Queensland No
James McGrath Queensland No
Liberal Party (40% turnout) 0 Yes 10 No
Christopher Back WA No
Cory Bernardi SA No
George Brandis Queensland No
David Bushby Tasmania No
Sean Edwards SA No
David Fawcett SA No
Jo Lindgren Queensland No
Anne Ruston SA No
Zed Seselja ACT No
Dean Smith WA No
Eric Abetz Tasmania Absent
Simon Birmingham SA Absent
Michaelia Cash WA Absent
Richard Colbeck Tasmania Absent
Mathias Cormann WA Absent
Concetta Fierravanti-Wells NSW Absent
Mitch Fifield Victoria Absent
Bill Heffernan NSW Absent
David Johnston WA Absent
Ian Macdonald Queensland Absent
Marise Payne NSW Absent
Linda Reynolds WA Absent
Michael Ronaldson Victoria Absent
Scott Ryan Victoria Absent
Arthur Sinodinos NSW Absent
National Party (50% turnout) 0 Yes 2 No
Bridget McKenzie Victoria No
John Williams NSW No
Fiona Nash NSW Absent
Barry O'Sullivan Queensland Absent
Dio Wang WA Palmer United Party No
Stephen Parry Tasmania President Absent
Totals (58% turnout) 11 Yes – 33 No