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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 14 Hansard (7 December) . . Page.. 5825..

Rostered ministers question time

Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs

Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders—child abuse and neglect

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, a report on Indigenous disadvantage delivered by the Steering Committee for the Review of Government Service Provision states that substantiated cases of Indigenous children being abused or neglected increased from 15 to 37 per 1,000 children between 1991-2000 and 2009-10. What are the reasons for this increase?

DR BOURKE: I thank Mr Doszpot for his question. The figures quoted in your question are Australian figures rather than ACT figures.

MR DOSZPOT: Well, you have had a fair bit of time to examine these figures. This question was given to you. What are the reasons for this increase?

DR BOURKE: I refer the member to my previous answer that these are Australian figures, not ACT figures.

Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders—businesses

MR SMYTH: Minister, recommendation 22 in the second report on the activities of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elected Body deals with the development of Indigenous businesses. Minister, what specific actions have been implemented by the ACT government to increase employment by Indigenous people in the private sector and what have been the outcomes of these actions?

DR BOURKE: I thank Mr Smyth for his question. The ACT government became a fully participating member of the newly established Australian Indigenous Minority Supplier Council in late 2009. The council has certified two local Aboriginal-controlled businesses, Indigenous Success Australia and Straight Photography. Both these businesses are being promoted through ACT government agencies. Disability ACT supports the ACT social enterprise hub, which supports innovative projects with a focus on building the social and economic participation of vulnerable Canberrans, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

MR SMYTH: Minister, has the ACT government taken any action to encourage entities such as Billabong Aboriginal Development Corporation to equip Indigenous people to gain employment in such industries as horticulture, heavy vehicle driving, real estate, property management or childcare?

DR BOURKE: I thank Mr Smyth for his question. This is a particularly specific question which requires a detailed answer; I will take it on notice.

Alexander Maconochie Centre—drugs

MR SESELJA: Following an Indigenous prisoner suffering a methadone overdose at the Alexander Maconochie Centre, the Assembly passed a motion on 21 September

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