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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 1 Hansard (10 February) . . Page.. 39..


MS GALLAGHER (continuing):

contacted by hundreds of concerned constituents. Apparently, she knows of cases of children that concern her. She has not at any stage referred any of those matters to me, but she has managed to put out a number of press releases. What I am seeking is the support of the Assembly to move forward.

Mrs Dunne: Point of order.

MS GALLAGHER: I have finished.

Mrs Dunne: I refer to standing order 118 (a) on relevance. This is not about Mrs Burke; this is a question to the minister about her responsibilities.

Mr Corbell: Has she complied with her statutory obligation to report instances of abuse? Did you know that you have a statutory obligation to report instances of abuse?

Mrs Burke: Watch it, Mr Corbell! Go steady!

THE SPEAKER: Order, members! The minister is entitled to put things in context.

MRS BURKE: I have a supplementary question. Again, I ask the minister: are you specifically responsible for the failure of your department to comply with the Children and Young People Act?

MS GALLAGHER: I have taken responsibility for it, Mrs Burke. I can answer this in a number of different ways. I have taken responsibility for the fact that I was inadequately advised by my department, as have previous ministers over a number of years.

Mrs Burke: You can't pass the buck.

MS GALLAGHER: I have taken responsibility.

Child protection

MR STEFANIAK: My question is to the minister for family services. Minister, you have been family services minister for over a year now. Did you at any stage during that year ask questions of the department relating to child protection and the protection and rights of children in care?

Government members interjecting-

MR SPEAKER: Order, members! Minister, do you want the question repeated?

MS GALLAGHER: Sorry, would you repeat the end?

MR STEFANIAK: Yes, I will, if you would calm your colleagues. Minister, you have been the minister for over a year. Did you at any stage during that year ask questions of the department relating to child protection and the protection and rights of children in care?


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