MR GEPP (Northern Victoria) (17:26): I too rise to speak on the inquiry into the impact of animal rights activism on Victorian agriculture. I want to begin by congratulating Mr Elasmar for his stewardship of a very emotional and difficult inquiry, I have got to say. We heard from many people throughout the course of this inquiry, and often from polar opposite ends of the argument. It was always going to be a very complex, if you like, inquiry for the Parliament to navigate.
I also want to thank everybody who appeared before the inquiry. I think for the most part people were very honest and open with their thoughts and tried on many occasions to provide advice to the Parliament on how to deal with some of these very, very difficult matters. I also want to thank the committee staff for the work that they did.
But the fact is that we have come up with a dozen findings and some 15 recommendations. We have found, for example, that the often overused argument that activism is no more than whistleblowing is not the case, that there are things that have occurred throughout this situation which are not acceptable and that for people who are from farming communities often their farm is also their home and we need to take stock and think about those things in full. I think this inquiry has given us the opportunity.
I do not know exactly what Ms Bath is talking about, because we have not seen the minority report. It is disappointing that we get to this point. We get such a diversity of views, but I think that is reflective of the complexity of these issues. I am happy that we have come up with a very balanced report.