Parliament apologises for staff harassment



The Speaker of the House of Representatives has formally apologised to people who have been assaulted, abused, bullied or harassed at workplaces inside Parliament House.

Speaker Andrew Wallace gave the extraordinary statement on the first sitting day of 2022 on Tuesday.

The statement was the first of 28 recommendations of sex discrimination commissioner Kate Jenkins’ review into the toxic culture at Parliament House.

Mr Wallace said parliament had failed to make meaningful change to cultures and practices in the past but would listen to people who had participated in commissioner Jenkins’ review.

“Parliamentary workers feel pride in working for the country and the privilege and honour of making a difference or the Australian people. However, for far too many, it has not been safe or respectful,” he said.

“While we know we cannot undo the harm that has already been done, we are committed to acknowledging the mistakes of the past, and continuing to build safe and respectful workplaces.”

The review was triggered after former Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins went public last year with allegations she had been raped inside an office in the building.

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We’ve Already Come Too Far To End This Now.

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