Babies to be allowed in Qld Parliament

Queensland's 56th parliament is about to get to work on the first proper sitting day of the year.
Queensland's 56th parliament is about to get to work on the first proper sitting day of the year.

Breastfeeding and caring for young children will be allowed on the floor of Queensland Parliament, but there won't be any change to the rules to allow the practice.

Instead, new Speaker Curtis Pitt has told the first sitting day of state parliament on Thursday, parliament will simply judge on a case-by-case basis, and use common sense.

"I believe there is a collective will that this standing order not be enforced so as to enable very small children to be in the chamber when their parent is on the floor and care is needed, so long as there is no disruption to the house," Mr Pitt told parliament on Thursday.

"There is considerable goodwill for parents in this house, to the extent that I believe formal rule changes are not required."

Mr Pitt also said he believed there was enough goodwill for an MP who was forced to be absent from a vote in the house because they were caring for their child to be provided with a "pair" from the other side of parliament.

The issue was sparked when Labor MP Brittany Lauga brought her infant daughter onto the floor of parliament on Tuesday during the swearing-in ceremony, which was technically a breach of the standing orders.

The move comes ahead of a busy first sitting day for the new parliament, with Labor set to reintroduce 16 pieces of legislation, as well as a number of changes to parliamentary procedures.

The changes include how long parliament will sit each day, with changes to the sessional orders capping the day's proceedings to a finish time of 7pm to be debated.

Australian Associated Press