Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga at Queensland Parliament on Tuesday.
Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga at Queensland Parliament on Tuesday.

‘Apologise or resign’: CQ MPs respond to Michelle Landry

Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga on Tuesday called for Capricornia MP Michelle Landry to “either apologise or resign” for comments she made in relation to a male federal staff member masturbating on the desk of a female politician.

“I’m utterly ashamed and embarrassed by the comments by the Member for Capricornia today, defending the behaviour of a man employed by the Australian people to work in Parliament House, a place that all of us should respect,” Ms Lauga said.

“It was clear by the acts that were televised last night that these people who were involved clearly do not respect the parliament, they do not respect women, and they do not respect our country.

“I am calling on the Federal Member for Capricornia to either apologise or resign on the basis of her comments.

“I understand that people are concerned about the welfare of staff, but to go and try and excuse this behaviour by saying that this man was a good worker is just absolutely deplorable by the Member for Capricornia.”

“The standard that you walk past is the standard that you accept, and clearly the Member for Capricornia is walking past this kind of behaviour, excusing it, and that is absolutely deplorable.”

Lauga’s Labor Party colleague, Rockhampton MP, Barry O’Rourke said Ms Landry’s statements were “absolutely disgraceful”.

“No one should be feeling any sympathy for a bloke who filmed himself mast[u]rbating onto a female MP’s desk and sent the video around Parliamentary staffers,” he wrote online.

“It was a sick act and showed a breathtaking amount of disrespect.

“There’s something very wrong with the culture down there.”

Ms Landry released a statement earlier on Tuesday after receiving national media attention that she called “very selective”.

“As I said, I was horrified what I saw in news reporting last night over this incident,” she said.

“I think there is a real behaviour problem in Parliament, and we must address it.

“My comments reflected my concern for the staffer’s mental health, and I do not believe in joining the national pile-on in regards to a staff member who has been rightfully dismissed for his actions.

“There needs to be a strict code for all MPs, Senators and staff to adhere to. I have the highest standards for myself, my staff and the way we conduct ourselves in Parliament.”

“As I said, this is federal parliament and people should behave themselves.”

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