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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 7 Hansard (5 August) . .

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There were several categories that businesses could nominate for, from a start-up business all the way through to a medium-size business. For the start-up category the nominees were Antique Salon, Capital Civil Contractors, Synergy Self Defence and Fitness and, taking out that category, Cogito Group.

Nominated for the microbusiness award were Barmco Mana Partnership, Bravium, Handmade Canberra, Paladin Risk Management and, the winner, Solace Creations.

Nominated for the small business award were Bruceworks, Choku Bai Jo, Coordinate, Interaction Consulting, Tailored Accounts and, a popular winner on the evening, Today's Homes.

For the medium business award the nominees were Adore Tea, Synergy Group and Intelledox, the winner, a very popular Canberra business which is familiar to most people in this place. The 2014 ACT business award also went to Intelledox for their substantial contribution to software engineering and innovations that have streamlined customer interactions with a variety of different kinds of businesses used by over a million people worldwide.

It is important to note that the majority of this year's award recipients are innovators, whether in software, security or home insulation. For Canberra to be a thriving and vibrant economy, we must encourage this sense of innovation as displayed by all the nominees and winners this year.

Again, I would like to thank Telstra for their ongoing support and for continuing to recognise the contribution made by the business community in the ACT. I also, once again, thank the people that were in attendance and the other businesses there for what was a most memorable and enjoyable night, paying tribute to some of the high achieving businesses that are proud to call our city home.

Multicultural affairs

DR BOURKE (Ginninderra) (5.45): Tonight I would like to highlight a small but important ACT government initiative—the work experience and support program run by the government's multicultural affairs community participation group and delivered by the Canberra Institute of Technology. I have spoken previously of my pride in the advances Australia has made to become an exemplar multicultural nation over the last 40 years. This is in spite of the regular reminders we get of old, entrenched attitudes and backward steps like Senator Brandis's failed attempt to gut the Racial Discrimination Act.

Meanwhile, the ACT government and this community get on with fostering community harmony. We value and benefit from the contributions by Canberrans of many cultural backgrounds. We work closely with organisations such as Migrant and Refugee Resettlement Services of the ACT to help new arrivals, and we have great introductory English programs in our schools amongst initiatives and human rights protections.

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