Ms PATTEN (Northern Metropolitan) (19:46): It is very sad that we are all not as perfect as the Liberal Democrats. I mean, what did we do without them before this? I do not know how we managed without Mr Quilty showing us the light. How on earth did we get on? I do not know. No, that is right, we did manage to pass legislation without them.
Ms PATTEN: That is right—we did manage to pass legislation. Now, I have been trying not to get angry. In fact I really did not want to speak on this, because I just felt that this was a matter of us talking about ourselves—in fact talking about ourselves for nearly 3 hours—about whether we should deign to be vaccinated and whether we should deign to mandate and say that we will walk the walk, we will talk the talk, we will be the leaders and we will show that not only our healthcare workers, not only our teachers and not only our hospitality staff will get vaccinated but we will too and we will stand here and say that.
Yes, I think this is difficult, and I take some of Mr Atkinson’s points and actually Mr Rich-Phillips’s points as well. This is difficult, but in actual fact in my mind it is not difficult, because I think of those people in the north. I think of those migrants in the north who would be completely confounded that we were saying, ‘It’s my right whether I get vaccinated and go to work or not. I don’t have to tell anyone’. They would be saying, ‘Why couldn’t I have got the vaccine earlier? What did I not understand? Why was I escaping from countries?’. Well, they are dying because they do not have the vaccine. They are dying because they do not have access to the vaccine.
This was a motion about us taking a stand, or that is how I saw it. I saw it as taking a stand. I thought it was a fairly simple idea, but obviously it is not—it is far more complex. The debate today has gone far and wide from this motion—far, far and wide. We have started talking about federal royal commissions, and you know, if I could vote for one, I would, too. But we are a state Parliament, and we are the upper house of one.
I will support this motion. I believe that most people and the vast majority of people in my electorate would say, ‘What do you mean you won’t make a mandate? What do you mean?’. I am hoping to go to the pub next week and show my vaccination certificate to get into that pub. I am hoping that I will be able to possibly go into a shop and maybe buy some stockings, and I will show my vaccination certificate there too. I have no trouble doing it here, and I commend this motion.
Fiona Patten MP
Leader of Reason
Member for Northern Metropolitan
Motion by Ms Symes 14/10/21