Mr SCOTT (Minister for Finance) — On behalf of all members of goodwill, I rise to offer my best wishes to the Islamic community in the holy month of Ramadan, which is a time of deep significance on the Muslim calendar. It is a time to practise selflessness, to reflect, to show compassion and to reach out to others. These values speak to all of us. Victoria’s Muslim community contributes enormously to our diverse and cohesive society, where we are fortunate to be able to observe and share in the traditions of our many faiths.

On Monday I had the opportunity to attend the parliamentary iftar dinner, which was hosted by the Australian Intercultural Society, to celebrate the breaking of the fast. During Ramadan, Muslims fast between the hours of sunrise and sunset, and at the end of the day family and friends gather together to break the fast with a meal called iftar. Over 30 MPs from across the Parliament, including government, coalition and Greens members and the Independent member for Shepparton, came together with representatives of religious groups, civic groups, academia and community members to share a meal and to stand with the Muslim community. By celebrating Ramadan together, we not only celebrate the Islamic faith but also celebrate the strength of Victoria’s multicultural community. I wish the Muslim community all the best at this special time of year.