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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 2 Hansard (23 February) . . Page.. 469..


MS PORTER (continuing):

talked through that with the committee and we still went with the recommendation. I really cannot understand how it will work practically.

Ms Bresnan has already spoken to recommendation 19, and I would reiterate what she said about that recommendation. Again, this is an area that the federal government needs to also take account of as it is about the appointment of a general practitioner. But I know the government desires to improve the health outcomes for Indigenous people.

The conclusion of the report says that the 24 recommendations focus on practical solutions, and many of them do. But there are some that are not clear in their intent and direct the government to commit resources where there is no evidence that this will bring about a desired result, even though they are well intentioned.

I know other members of the committee may not be pleased with my remarks. However, as I said, the chair, in particular, was quite impatient with my interventions at the time, as he has been today, and he obviously continues to believe that I have a cheek to suggest that changes could have been made. However, I would thank the chair and the deputy chair for being patient with me at times and allowing me to deal with those various matters that I was very concerned about and to have some of them amended before this report was tabled. I would particularly like to thank Grace Concannon as the secretary of the committee.

MR DOSZPOT (Brindabella) (12.12), in reply: I rise somewhat reluctantly, but I feel I have to; I cannot let Ms Porter's comments go unanswered on a number of points. We welcomed the input of all of the committee, including Ms Porter's predecessor, Ms Burch, as well as Ms Porter's own contributions when she came onto our committee. However, the patience that she is talking about was really tested. We did allow Ms Porter an opportunity to voice her opinion and to contribute to the committee, but by the second or the third time we debated the same point, my patience was wearing thin. We gave every opportunity for Ms Porter to be as eloquent—which unfortunately she was not—as she was here today with hindsight on a number of decisions that were taken.

With respect to the recommendations that were taken, Ms Porter agreed with them all along the way, except for one which she wanted noted. That was recommendation 3, and we duly noted her objection. I am somewhat lost for words in trying to understand Ms Porter's attempt at this. It almost reminds me of Ms Burch's reaction to the education inquiry that was held, where it seems that the responsibilities that are attended to within the committee are somewhat ignored when it comes to the recommendations finally being handed down. I do not know why that is; perhaps it is to justify their own position within their own ranks.

I am somewhat surprised by the number of issues that Ms Porter has brought to our attention this afternoon. All I can say is that none of the decisions that were taken were paternalistic or racial. We are looking at all of the issues that affect our community. We debated those issues that are relevant to our community. Ms Porter does not see eye to eye with some of those, and it is her right to object. But I certainly would hope that in the future she would make those objections more vehemently within the committee room rather than pass the recommendations and then have a


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