I thought this had gone quiet.

Ashby's Tiger
Ashby’s Tiger (Photo credit: Roebot)

The Brisbane Times reports today

The federal government has settled its case with Speaker Peter Slipper‘s staffer James Ashby for $50,000 and a pledge to provide training for MPs to prevent sexual harassment.

A three-page settlement offer from the Australian Government Solicitor (AGS) has been accepted by Mr Ashby’s lawyers, Harmers Workplace Lawyers.

Mr Ashby had sued the commonwealth, alleging it had failed to provide a safe workplace.

A spokesman for Mr Ashby said the commonwealth had offered $50,000 and an “improved education program for staff in relation to issues of bullying and harassment and to offer specific training for MPs and senators in relation to sexual harassment”.

This means that a lot of the backwash and confusion on the issue has now been removed and at the next hearing in the matter Ashby vs Slipper set for the 3rd of October. The purpose of that hearing should be to establish if there is a matter to proceed with or not. Given that the matter proceeding is not likely to be pleasant or helpful for anyone it may be as well for it to go away, however it is hard to imagine that it can just fold away, especially given the wider ramifications of what happen if it does proceed.

The government may be buoyed by the polls, however it is still in effect a minority government. There is little value in the matter for either party, given that the libs had endorsed Slipper over a number of years against.


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