Speaking


Audio Recordings

For audio recordings of my speeches and conversations at events across the country, please see this podcast below. It's also available on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher.




Written Speeches

Below you will find transcripts of doorstops, speeches and media interviews.

NDIS needs support, not cuts - Speech, House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 16 FEBRUARY 2022

I want to talk about the way in which people with disabilities have suffered during the pandemic. Labor introduced the National Disability Insurance Scheme to deliver certainty and security to Australians living with disabilities and to their families.

Yet under this government, rather than providing certainty, the NDIS has seen plans arbitrarily and without clear cause changed.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Under Liberals, Australian economy is struggling - House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 16 FEBRUARY 2022

Australia's sports stars are nothing short of extraordinary. Last year we saw Emma McKeon set an Olympic record for the number of medals won by a female Olympian at a single Olympic Games. With seven medals, she equalled a record which hadn't been matched since the 1950s. We've just seen Jakara Anthony take out the gold in the women's moguls at the Winter Olympics. There are so many other extraordinary athletes out there going faster, higher, stronger than anyone who preceded them.

When I see that great success on the sporting field, I wish that we could see Australia's economy performing just as well. But unfortunately, under the Liberals, the Australian economy is struggling. If it was an engine, it would be sputtering and blowing smoke.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Working with woman makes me better MP - Speech, House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 15 FEBRUARY 2022

Today marks one year to the day since Lisa Wilkinson's interview with Brittany Higgins and Samantha Maiden's reporting. Samantha wrote today:

One year ago today, on the morning of February 15, @newscomauHQ published the first interview with Brittany Higgins. A lot of things have happened in intervening year. Good & bad. I remain proud of the work we did & grateful she chose to speak.

Fiat justitia ruat caelum

This, as I'm sure all honourable members know, is Latin for 'let justice be done, though the heavens fall'.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Labor stands for transparency, the Liberals don't - Transcript, ABC Afternoon Briefing

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

TELEVISION INTERVIEW

ABC AFTERNOON BRIEFING

MONDAY, 14 FEBRUARY 2022

SUBJECTS: Foreign interference; Peter Dutton’s failures in defence; Donation transparency; Liberals’ climate inaction; NSW by-elections; Dyson Heydon.

GREG JENNETT, HOST: Jason Falinski, Liberal MP, and Labor's Andrew Leigh in the studio. Both have dashed into the studio from the House of Reps, where there was an impromptu division keeping you on your toes. Let's roll straight into discussion about weaponisation of national security. I think we might have heard some more overtones of this today in Question Time, as we did at the end of last week. Firstly to you Andrew Leigh. This is not without foundation, is it, when we hear Peter Dutton and others trying to dial up national security concerns on Labor when you consider the ASIO Director-General’s threat assessment last week, that is all parties are vulnerable here.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: We certainly know all parties are vulnerable, Greg, but it is very clear that there are no Labor candidates under concern from ASIO. Anthony Albanese said as much as a result of discussions with the ASIO Director-General. We know that ramping up fear of conflict with China is counter-productive to Australia’s national security interest.

JENNETT: If that is the case, Jason Falinski, why has Peter Dutton and others been talking in these terms that Labor and Anthony Albanese might be the Chinese Communist Party 's pick?

JASON FALINKSI: I don't think Peter Dutton suggested that, but feel free-

JENNETT: Something every similar.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Protesters claim to be saving democracy, but are biggest threat to it - Speech, House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 14 FEBRUARY 2022

Over recent weeks, far-Right antivax protests have cropped up in Canada, Britain, France and New Zealand. Last week these protests came to Canberra, where our 99 per cent adult vaccination rate makes us the most vaccinated city in the world. These protesters have a right to peacefully protest, but those of us who believe in science also have a right to point out that vaccines save lives and conspiracy theories can kill. Since the Morrison government belatedly began rolling out COVID vaccines in Australia, these free vaccines have protected thousands of Australians from hospitalisation and death. They work. Ivermectin, hydroxychloroquine and vitamin C do not.

These protesters aren't just wrong about the science; they're also a risk to democracy. As Van Badham has pointed out, these groups should be judged not by their relatively small numbers but by the damage they're willing to do. Ironically, the people who claim to be saving democracy are the biggest threat to it.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Labor will fix systemic problems in aged care - Speech, House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 14 FEBRUARY 2022

Two words sum up the challenge of aged care: neglect and respect. Neglect is the title of the interim report of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, which found widespread failures in the aged-care system under the Morrison government. Respect is what aged-care workers have not seen from this government. This government is constantly attacking workers, and never more so than when it comes to aged-care workers. I commend the member for Corangamite for bringing on this critical motion at this vital time.

Here in Canberra Nicole Butler was reported in the Canberra Times as having been unable to visit her mother, a resident at Warrigal Stirling, for nearly a month because of the COVID outbreak.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Coalition Attacks on Academic Freedom and Independence - Speech, House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 10 FEBRUARY 2022

On Christmas Eve last year we saw a familiar pantomime playing out, of the Liberals again vetoing Australian Research Council grants. This sad and tired pantomime played out first under the Howard government, when Brendan Nelson knocked off nearly a dozen ARC grants. It then happened in 2018-19, when Senator Birmingham and the member for Wannon, Dan Tehan, as education ministers, knocked off another eleven Australian Research Council grants. And now we’ve seen the coalition do it a third time, with the decision of the member for Fadden, Stuart Robert, as acting education minister, to block six humanities research projects from receiving funding.

Let’s be clear about what it means to win an Australian Research Council grant. This is a process that involves several rounds of rigorous peer review from internationally determined experts. Those researchers who put their time into preparing for Australian Research Council grants do so often during summer, giving up their holidays in order to prepare documents, knowing that there is probably only a one in five chance that they will make it through that highly competitive process. I’m aware of this; as a former professor at the Australian National University, I was fortunate to win three Australian Research Council grants and to serve as a reviewer for Australian Research Council grants.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Stopping Religious Vilification - Speech, House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 10 FEBRUARY 2022

The shadow Attorney-General referred to the Race Discrimination Commissioner's report Sharing the stories of Australian Muslims. I wanted to take the House to some of the remarks made in the consultations around that report. One participant said:

My aunt wears a hijab, she has been spat on and had her hijab pulled off … she was born in Australia. When my aunt responded, the attacker was surprised that she could speak and defend herself.

Another Muslim woman said:

I don't feel safe while I’m walking down the street. I'm thinking of being spat at or someone might pull my hijab off my head.

The report noted that Muslim women face a 'triple penalty' as women, as members of a racial minority and as members of a religious minority. It highlighted the way in which mosques have been targeted with things such as graffiti, property being destroyed, pig carcasses being left on the grounds and direct attacks on members of the mosque.

We have seen a rise in Islamophobia. The September 11 events led to a shift in attitudes toward Australian Muslims and flow-on attacks on the wider Australian Arab community.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Proxy advisor win a defeat for Frydenberg - Speech, House of Representatives

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 10 FEBRUARY 2022

Proxy firms advise on issues such as executive pay, director appointments or corporate social responsibility. They've done important work holding firms to account on excessive CEO pay, the use of JobKeeper to pay executive bonuses and Rio Tinto’s destruction of ancient Aboriginal artworks in the Juukan Gorge.

And yet on the Friday before Christmas, the Treasurer rushed out draconian measures that were designed to attack proxy advisors.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Government egos cost Aussies tens of billions - Transcript, 5AA Mornings

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

RADIO INTERVIEW

5AA MORNINGS

THURSDAY, 10 FEBRUARY 2022

SUBJECTS: Religious discrimination bill; Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg’s JobKeeper mismanagement.

GRAEME GOODINGS, HOST: The lower house in Canberra last night sat, well, pretty much right through the night to pass the religious discrimination bill. It's been one of the most contentious pieces of legislation to go before Parliament in a long time. Five Liberals crossed the floor agreeing to amendments put forward by the opposition. The government ended up voting against its own bill. The legislation passed with the opposition supported by those dissenting Libs. The bill finally passed about 4.30 this morning. Joining me now the federal Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury, Andrew Leigh. Andrew, you’ve had a big night.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: It’s been an interesting night in the House of Reps, Graeme. It's not often the government loses a vote on the floor of the House of Representatives. And something I've never seen before, after losing a vote they then turned around and voted against their own bill. So you had the spectacle of the Prime Minister voting against a bill that his party had introduced. It was the most extraordinary ‘take your bat and ball and go home’ attempt that I've ever seen.

GOODINGS: It has drawn a lot of interest from around the nation. Did the opposition get what they wanted?

LEIGH: Not entirely. So what we would have liked to do is to put an anti-vilification measure in place, which would prohibit religious vilification. I spoke to that around 3am. We also wanted to make sure that there was protection against discrimination for older people receiving in-home care. We weren't able to secure sufficient support for that. But we were able to get support for an amendment which ensured that children in religious schools are protected from discrimination. And that's a very important measure.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Stay in touch

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter

Search



Cnr Gungahlin Pl and Efkarpidis Street, Gungahlin ACT 2912 | 02 6247 4396 | [email protected] | Authorised by A. Leigh MP, Australian Labor Party (ACT Branch), Canberra.