Federal Member for Newcastle Sharon Claydon has used a Parliamentary address to slam the Federal Attorney-General for neglecting Newcastle.
Ms Claydon said Newcastle’s courts seemed to have been left out of the Budget, despite the Government being aware of the need to improve the current facilities.
“There was no acknowledgement of the terrible physical constraints the courts operate in and no sign of a plan to alleviate the pressure on the people who have to use them,” Ms Claydon said.
Ms Claydon also used the speech to call on the Attorney-General to appoint a new Federal Circuit Court judge as a matter of urgency.
“I am yet to receive a reply from the Attorney-General, Christian Porter, advising me of when Newcastle can expect to have our full complement of Federal Circuit Court judges after Judge Middleton's transfer to Queensland,” Ms Claydon said.
“This is the third time in almost as many years that Newcastle has been left high and dry because of a lack of timely appointments by the government. Each time, my community is forced to wait many months for a replacement.”
Ms Claydon said the Turnbull Government’s failure to appoint judges in a timely manner put lives at risk.
“This has led to longer and longer delays, and lives left in limbo while people waiting desperately for their family law cases to be resolved,” Ms Claydon said.
“This isn’t just an inconvenience – it’s a serious matter of community safety, especially for families facing diabolical issues including domestic violence, substance abuse and extreme family breakdown.”
“The people of Newcastle deserve so much more from this government. I plead with the Attorney-General to act now to make amends for the shocking history of inertia.”