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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 2 Hansard (10 March) . . Page.. 737..


It is the second time this year that we have seen the Liberal Party attack public office holders of an independent statutory body. It is quite extraordinary behaviour from an opposition to publicly go after two statutory office holders from the same body who have simply been undertaking their responsibilities in accordance with the law.

In the time remaining to me, I will reflect on some of the other issues raised in the review of the first five years of operations. Obviously this reform project is a long-term project about building a culture of human rights dialogue within government agencies. Of course, the government's move to establish the right of action to hold public entities to account in the courts for their failure to abide by the provisions of the act and to act in accordance with it, I think, was a very important reform. It added teeth to the first stage of the reform, which was of course the introduction of the act itself. I note that the report makes some comments about how other agencies could be engaged in that process, and that is certainly an issue which the government will give consideration to.

There is also the issue of the extension of our rights framework to include social, cultural and economic rights, and that is a matter the government will give further consideration to in due course.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Sitting suspended from 12.27 to 2 pm.

Questions without notice

Bimberi Youth Justice Centre—security protocols

MR SESELJA: My question is to the Minister for Children and Young People. On Friday, 25 February the woodworking trainer at Bimberi Youth Justice Centre, engaged under contract from Caloola, was told by his supervisors that he would no longer be training Bimberi detainees in woodwork. In a meeting on Tuesday it was alleged that he had breached a number of security protocols. The trainer claims that he received no counselling or warnings in relation to these alleged breaches. The trainer says that he had no induction training, including on OHS and security protocols; that in the six weeks he was at Bimberi he was not asked for any identification evidence; and that he was not aware of any police check being carried out. He was not issued with a personal duress alarm until the week before he was terminated.

Minister what were the breaches of security alleged to have been committed by this worker and why was he not counselled or warned in relation to those breaches?

MS BURCH: I thank the member for the question. I have been contacted by that worker today. There has been an email into my office. I have asked the department for a full briefing on that. There are some matters that need to be responded to, so I look forward to having a full and comprehensive brief from the department on that.

MR SPEAKER: A supplementary, Mr Seselja?

MR SESELJA: Minister, is it not the case that the only feedback that this woodwork teacher ever received about his performance was from your colleague Andrew Barr who, in an email to the teacher on 4 December 2010, said:


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