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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 10 Hansard (21 September) . . Page.. 4203..


MS GALLAGHER: No, this has not been raised—not recently. I chair the Ministerial Council on Mental Health, and we just had our last meeting; this was not raised then. It does come up from time to time in individual correspondence that I get from consumers and carers around the adequacy of the response. I am not sure that that can necessarily be linked to adequacy of staffing. Again, this goes a bit to around expectations. But, certainly, not that I can recall, Mr Hanson, but, again, I will check my records to make sure that that statement is accurate.

MS LE COUTEUR: A supplementary, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Le Couteur.

MS LE COUTEUR: What are the other recommendations that the government is considering with regard to CATT, and could you please table these recommendations?

MS GALLAGHER: I am happy to come back and provide the Assembly with the consultations that are ongoing at the moment. I have been out to the city mental health team, for example, recently to talk with them around some of the changes that they have undergone in their workplace. There are certainly discussions and consultations occurring across the government system, and I am very happy to bring back further information around the scope of those discussions, the feedback we have had to date and how we are going to move forward.

Schools—distribution of political material

MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the minister for education. Minister, on 2 September, Ms Hunter, Ms Burch and Mr Coe attended a student forum at Campbell high school. At the event, each student was given a white plastic bag featuring ALP branding, containing what appeared to be forms of promotional material; in other words, a big show-bag of ALP propaganda. Who was responsible for the distribution of this material, in clear breach of protocol?

MR BARR: From the outset, I think it is fair to observe that there were a number of breaches of protocol in relation to this particular exercise, not least of which was the attendance of three members of the Assembly without formally advising me as minister for education that they were attending the school. So Mr Coe, Ms Hunter and Ms Burch were in breach of that element of the protocol which has been in place, as I understand it, for more than a decade. It extends back over multiple governments in this place. It is established for a very good reason. I think the line of questioning we are seeing today would indeed indicate why it is important to have this protocol in place.

Equally, as members would be aware, there was a particular incident last year with a religious organisation presenting allegedly quite concerning material to another public school. As a result of that particular incident, further protocols were put in place in relation to material—

Mr Hanson: On a point of order: relevance. This specific question is about the plastic bag featuring ALP branding and who authorised that materials distribution. I would ask that the minister come to the question and be directly relevant.


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