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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 11 Hansard (19 October) . . Page.. 4636..

I very much welcome the government paper. I look forward to reading that paper. I guess there are a couple of things I am a little concerned about that came out in the statement today. They are around the models that the minister was talking about. I suspect that some of this is around the fact that funding for the youth services program and the family support program is being reviewed at the moment; it may well be that this is going to be aligned with providing more support to children who are in the out-of-home care sector, the care and protection system.

This is already happening, of course, but I am a little concerned that what will come out of this is a focus for these programs or for the new revised and amalgamated program to solely focus on this group. I think that would be a mistake. There are many young people, some of whom have not been in the care and protection system or out of home care system, who also deserve the support of those services. We need to be looking at how we can increase the services, not limit them to a certain number of people. I thank the Assembly for the opportunity to speak today.

Question resolved in the affirmative.


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, Mr Hargreaves, Ms Hunter, Ms Le Couteur, Ms Porter, Mr Seselja and Mr Smyth proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to the Assembly. In accordance with standing order 79, Mr Speaker has determined that the matter proposed by Mr Hargreaves be submitted to the Assembly, namely:

The importance of a strong local economy to support local jobs.

MR HARGREAVES (Brindabella) (4.10): Before I start, I offer my condolences to Mr Coe. Madam Assistant Speaker, the Stanhope Labor government is committed to providing opportunities for Canberrans—the opportunity to live in a sustainable, fair, safe environment city, to participate in lifelong learning, to create, to be healthy and active, to share the benefits of an inclusive community.

This Labor government is committed to ensuring that Canberrans have the opportunity to do business, invest in new ideas and build partnerships and prosperity. Perhaps the greatest opportunity we can provide, an opportunity that is an absolute priority for this Labor government, is the opportunity to participate in a strong and dynamic employment market—job opportunities—and to protect and sustain those opportunities, particularly when faced with potentially catastrophic events, like the global financial crisis.

A stable job is the foundation, a precondition even, of so many other opportunities for Canberrans. It provides the income to support our families and sustain our community. It provides a sense of identity, purpose and inclusion, which support the wellbeing of individuals and society, and the goods and services that support our material welfare.

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