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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2012 Week 5 Hansard (2 May) . . Page.. 1812..


MR HANSON: Minister, what factors have led to this pattern of incorrect information being provided by the Health Directorate?

MS GALLAGHER: I think in all of the questions they have raised today, Mr Speaker, there are different reasons for the data being incorrect. None of them are linked.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Hanson, a supplementary.

MR HANSON: Minister, in what other areas under your responsibility is incorrect data being provided to the community?

MS GALLAGHER: I think I have written to you, Mr Hanson, in the last week, saying that the Property Group advised me that there were no retired service organisations on the allocation list for property and I have written to you saying that that was not correct. I have an issue at the moment that I am checking—a question from Mr Alistair Coe—around dead running for ACTION buses, and I think that may involve correction of data as well.

Childcare—places

MR HARGREAVES: My question is to the Minister for Community Services about childcare. Minister, can you update the Assembly on the progress that is being made towards improving the access to childcare services for Canberra families, please?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Hargreaves for his interest in children's services. We are fortunate here in the ACT to have the highest standard of childcare in the country, and ACT Labor government is committed to ensuring it remains so, particularly as we transition to the national quality framework which all states and territories have signed up to.

In the ACT there are currently around 120 approved long day care centres providing more than 8,000 places on any given day. Since 2002 there has been a steady increase in the numbers of licensed day care services available in the ACT. In the past year alone more than 500 new childcare places have been made available in 26 centres across Canberra, and this is partly attributable to our investment in childcare and children's services. This increase is the result of new services opening and existing services increasing their capacity.

Between December 2010 and March 2012 new long day care centres commenced operation in McKellar, Flynn, Charnwood and Harrison. Three preschools operated by the Catholic Education Office also opened to provide full-day options to support parents and workforce participation. Services are demonstrating their commitment to increase places for children in response to the growing demand, and they are to be commended for their achievements.

The education and care sector in the ACT is unique in its blend of community and privately owned services. Community organisations manage 72 per cent of the ACT


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