World News

Aussie Ministers barred from having sex with staff

Aussie Ministers barred from having sex with staff

"Barnaby made a shocking error of judgment in having an affair with a young woman working in his office", he said.

Joyce, a social conservative who leads the rural-based National party, the junior member of the ruling Coalition, has refused to resign despite pressure from some of his party colleagues.

Deputy Australian Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, a Catholic who campaigned on "family values" and who was married for 24 years, is expecting a child with his former staffer in April.

Hetherington Legal family law specialist Jennifer Hetherington has responded to the political scandal surrounding Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce's affair with former staffer Vikki Campion, who is now pregnant with his child.

"Barnaby... has set off a world of woe for those women and appalled all of us. But we must recognise that whatever may have been acceptable or to which a blind eye was turned in the past, today, in 2018, it is not acceptable for a minister to have a sexual relationship with somebody who works for them", he said. "And everybody knows that no good comes of it". "Doing so will constitute a breach of the standards", said the Prime Minister.

As such, he amended the code of conduct to make unequivocally clear that "ministers, regardless of whether they are married or single, must not engage in sexual relations with staff".

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Mr Turnbull said earlier Mr Joyce would take a week's break next week, which avoids the need for him to fill in as acting prime minister during Mr Turnbull's scheduled visit to meet US President Donald Trump in Washington next week.

"So Mr Joyce and his new partner are de facto now".

Labor deputy leader Tanya Plibersek repeated the opposition's assessment that Mr Joyce's position was "untenable", but said she doubted the Coalition could resolve the matter.

The amount the Deputy PM would be liable for would also depend on a range of factors including the length of the relationship, added Ms Hetherington.

"As Mr Joyce's political future is debated in Parliament and around the country, even if he is able to justify arranging a six-figure salary job for his mistress, he is nevertheless on the hook for child support and a property settlement if they split. Either way, he's toast", she said.


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