Tomorrow when Australian Human Rights Commission President Gillian Triggs is hauled again before a Senate committee to talk about the Bill Leak complaint, it is expected that one of the Liberal members of the committee will demand answers from Triggs on why she is going to Tasmania to give a speech at the Hobart Oration, an event hosted by the Bob Brown Foundation. As Crikey has previously pointed out, the event is not a fundraiser ($50 tickets don’t even break even) nor associated with a political party, despite what the Daily Tele has claimed, and outrage over it ignored that Tim Wilson, back when he was Human Rights Commissioner spoke at Liberal Party branch events. A tipster today forwarded us this event attended by Wilson while still at the commission back in 2015 for the right-wing group Australian Taxpayers Alliance and the Australian Liberty Alliance. Tickets were much more expensive at this event, at $300.

Those super keen freedom fans could, however, have paid $700 for the up-close and personal experience with the Human Rights Commissioner:

“Plus, for our most committed supporters, we are offering a VIP package which includes an exclusive VIP reception, a private luncheon with guest speakers and other dignitaries, preferred seating, and a DVD of all conference sessions & Liberty Awards. For only $700, the VIP package is an excellent opportunity to enhance your experience while helping us ensure the best possible conference.”

To paraphrase Senator Eric Abetz, it looks like “a blatant fundraising event for a [right wing] political action group”. Very poor judgement. 

Peter Fray

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