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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2012 Week 5 Hansard (3 May) . . Page.. 1996..


I think the travesty is—and this is the disappointing element for everyone who does not fit the Leader of the Opposition's view of "this is how you should live"—such people are entirely excluded. So his view, as expressed in this media release, is that if you do not conform to his view then there should not be any policy attempt to address the issues that you might confront.

In responding to a legitimate question from the crossbench in question time in relation to the breadth of the government's policies—will they go beyond just homeownership?—yes, they will, and they do. And I think it is entirely appropriate that those policies be broader, because there are many reasons why people may not have the objective of pursuing homeownership. There are many and varied reasons why people may not choose that. And that is a perfectly legitimate position.

I would not have thought that a party that professes to support choice in so many areas of life would be running a line that everyone must own a home and that the only objective of public policy should be to assist those people who want to own a home. But there are many people, as I say, for a variety of reasons, including where they are in their lifecycle, their particular employment priorities, who may not wish to purchase but who have a legitimate entitlement to seek affordable housing and would want from government a broad range of policies that would assist them in meeting their housing needs. It is very disappointing, and I think it has been stated by a number of commentators already that the approach that the Leader of the Opposition takes that it is "own your home or nothing"—

Mr Coe: Which commentators?

MR BARR: Amongst others, the online commentary on the RiotACT. I did enjoy that particular piece of analysis. I will have a shout-out to the gang at RiotACT who provide a very interesting coverage of territory politics. But I was very pleased to see a number of people, in their comments in relation to the press release that the Leader of the Opposition put out, recognise the—

Mr Coe: Check the IP address. I bet they all came from your office.

MR BARR: Hardly.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Mr Coe, stop interjecting please.

MR BARR: They recognise the flaws in the Leader of the Opposition's policy position. The government has the view that there is a breadth of policy response required, that housing affordability is about more than just homeownership, that housing affordability and access to housing in the housing continuum and people's opportunity to access affordable housing through different stages of their life are important and policy should be broadly set on that basis.

But having made those observations, I commend both bills to the Assembly. I thank the Liberal Party for their support of at least one of them and the Greens for their support of both pieces of legislation. It is perhaps not surprising that when it comes to


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