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QRC welcomes new protest laws

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Dry Bulk,

The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) has welcomed new laws passed by the Palaszczuk government to deter people from using dangerous devices that deliberately increase the risk of injury to themselves, emergency services workers and members of the public.

QRC Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane said the Summary Offences and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019, passed last night in parliament, was the right step forward in ensuring the rights of all Queenslanders were upheld.

“Everyone has the right to protest but everyone also has the right to commute to work safely, operate trains without fearing they will injure or kill someone and for ambulance drivers not to be impeded by protestors connecting themselves to concrete drums on the road,” Macfarlane said.

“QRC had urged the Parliament to consider both the government legislation and the LNP’s private members bill to address illegal trespass.

“We welcome the Parliament’s commitment to this important issue that affects every Queenslander.

“The new laws make it an offence to use attachment devices to block transport corridors and I applaud the Palaszczuk government for acting before someone is seriously injured. We’ve seen too much illegal and unsafe behaviour with activists deploying dangerous devices on rail lines and at ports.

“Our sector prioritises safety and these laws send a clear message to activists who use extreme actions.

“The laws passed the parliament with an overwhelming majority, including both the government and the LNP.

“QRC welcomes this cross-parliament commitment to uphold the safety for all Queenslanders, and especially those who work on railways, at ports or at other infrastructure projects.”

Macfarlane urged all parliamentarians to ensure the laws were operationally sufficient for the Queensland Police Service, particularly if protestors amend devices to avoid the offences the parliament has just passed.

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