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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 7 Hansard (16 June) . . Page.. 2347..


MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

humanitarian service; Ms Liesl Brown, the international tracing and refugee and asylum seeker services manager of the Australian Red Cross; and Mr Werner Padarin of St Vincent de Paul's Caritas Christi conference.

These individuals and their organisations are the first port of call for those seeking resettlement services. I thank these individuals and their organisations for their invaluable work and for joining with the ACT government in making Canberra a welcoming place for refugees, asylum seekers and other humanitarian entrants.

The ACT government will soon publish a brochure in various community languages that will reflect this collaboration. The brochure will provide useful contact information for both government and non-government organisations which will assist refugees, asylum seekers and other humanitarian entrants to settle in the ACT and advise them of their rights and responsibilities as citizens of the ACT and of Australia. It is clear that the ACT's approach is all about real people, real needs.

Another aspect of this acknowledgement of real people, real needs is about recognising the important contributions that refugees, asylum seekers and other humanitarian entrants make towards enhancing Canberra's multicultural way of life. This is apparent in the many endeavours undertaken by them, from learning and enhancing their English language skills, pursuing academic and career pathways, such as through the work experience support program, and further studies building their community capacity—for example, through the use of the facilities of the Theo Notaras Multicultural Centre and also through actively participating in the National Multicultural Festival.

To honour and celebrate 2009 World Refugee Day, the ACT government, in conjunction with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, will be flying World Refugee Day flags around the city from 14 to 28 June. In addition, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees is lighting key buildings around the nation's capital in blue to commemorate the occasion.

Madam Assistant Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to recognise the invaluable work of the community organisations. The hard work and dedication of individuals from these organisations has contributed strongly to advancing the plight of refugees, asylum seekers and other humanitarian entrants in the ACT.

In conclusion, Canberra is a richer place because of the presence of refugees, asylum seekers and other humanitarian entrants. World Refugee Day, 20 June, is a good day, a day during which we can focus on the needs, and to recognise the contributions and achievements, of refugees, asylum seekers and other humanitarian entrants into our community.

Debate (on motion by Mr Seselja) adjourned to the next sitting.

Open and accountable government

Discussion of matter of public importance

MADAM ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Mrs Dunne): Mr Speaker has received letters from Ms Bresnan, Mr Coe, Mr Doszpot, Mrs Dunne, Mr Hanson, Ms Hunter,


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