*Age Of Consent & Legal Sexual Activity for the State of
September 2006 Email to Premier Peter Beattie and Attorney General Linda
Lavarch acknowledging the return of the Beattie Government with a
massive majority and suggesting that can now feel safe in enacting age of
consent reform. I also point out that since there is no Hansard record of any
----- Original Message -----
From: John Frame
Subject: further information in regard to Criminal Law reform
To Hon. Premier Peter Beattie and Hon. Attorney-General Linda Lavarch,
I congratulate you on winning so many seats in this weekend's election that you can now feel safe in ensuring the passage of overdue legislation which enables equal protection and support of youth under Queensland Law. I refer specifically the urgent reform of the Criminal Code to enact an equal age of consent.
I wish to bring your attention to one important truth which I have only today observed in the October 1990 PCJC Report on Homosexual Law Reform (which was chaired by yourself Mr Beattie). In that Report you declare your personal support for Recommendation 7 which stated that there ought to be an equal age of consent. However I had not previously realised that the "Dissenting Conclusions" signed by all three Liberal and National MP's (Gunn, Santoro and Harper) did not include any objection to an equal age of consent.
At the closing of your own statement in the Report (on page 78) you wrote that "Those members who oppose the Legislation or feel strongly about any aspect of it have an opportunity to put their views on the public record when the Bill changing the law comes before the House. In my view this is the appropriate way to express a Member's view." However Hansard shows that not one Member took the opportunity to speak either for or against the unequal age of consent which had been included, clearly against the PCJC recommendation, in the Bill which was presented to Parliament.
Attorney-General Dean Wells proved his support for reform when he included an equal age of consent in his 1995 Revised Criminal Code. Sadly that Code was repealed by the Nationals in 1996. Again there was no Hansard record of any Member discussing the age of consent issue in debate on that Bill.
We know that the unequal age of consent is a reality entirely due to the actions in 1990 by Labor Party Members of Parliament. It is a necessity that the Labor Party in 2006 lives up to the sensible moral stance which had been expressed in the 1990 PCJC Report.
The complete lack of Parliamentary debate on this issue, despite ample opportunities, is proof in itself that there will be negligible opposition to reform.
I welcome your response.
Ph: 07 3350 1562 / local mobile: 0409 501 561
----"There is no substitute for equality"----