A QUEENSLAND senator has spoken out against proposals to dock judges’ pay and superannuation, claiming any plans to do so misunderstand what it is judges actually do — and on what they miss out.
Liberal senator Santo Santoro said claims that judges pay and superannuation exceed a ‘community standard’ ignore the “vital role” they have in ensuring the highest judicial standards and the integrity of the law. “We have to understand as a community what it is that judges do — and what it costs them to do it,” he said.
Santoro said that in addition to a heavy workload, judges had to accommodate themselves to the significant loss of social opportunity that came with being detached from the community.
“The people deserve justice delivered effectively, efficiently, with scholarship and learning, and with scrupulous fairness. To achieve these objectives, judges must lead what is in effect a very reclusive lifestyle and so much their families.”
Santoro condemned state Labor leaders who want judges’ superannuation slashed, arguing it is a wrong move. Many judges “lose” money when they go to the bench from the bar, he said. .
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