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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 9 Hansard (16 September) . .

Page.. 2733..


MS GALLAGHER: It did not take the issuing of a provisional improvement notice. As I understand it, there was work underway with the executive team in responding to staff concerns. Staff felt that they wanted to pursue it further through the provisional improvement notice and they have done that, as is their right. Management are responding appropriately to that.

Yes, there were discussions with staff and there were efforts made to address those issues that staff had raised. The PIN was a formal process that came and management are dealing with that, as they should, to ensure that the unit is as safe as possible for staff to work there and to ensure that we have the right mix of staff working in that environment and that the model of care that has been agreed to by staff for the adult mental health unit is implemented and that staff are supported to do just that.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Hanson.

MR HANSON: Minister, what are you doing personally as minister to ensure that staff are working in a safe environment and not remaining in a situation where they are in fear of attack?

MS GALLAGHER: I am doing what I need to do, which is speaking with ACT Health to ensure that they are responding appropriately to the issues that staff raise, including approving additional resources, and asking Health if any other additional resources need to be made available for that unit.

Schools—safety

MR DOSZPOT: My question is for the minister for education. Minister, in recent months there have been safety incidents at three ACT public schools. The first, at Gowrie Primary School, closed the school for five days and resulted in a staff member being admitted to hospital. The second incident, at Belconnen High School, was apparently due to a faulty electrical switchboard. And in the third, at Lyneham High School, smoke in the hall caused the school to be evacuated and the fire brigade called to the school. In light of these incidents, can the minister confirm whether all ACT schools meet current electrical and fire safety standards?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Doszpot for his question. Each school has quite a rigorous condition assessment report. I think that by your own question there you made recognition that one of the problems was indeed a human error: the actions of one of the folks that came in to service a piece of equipment led to a problem; they did not quite operate it as they should.

Our schools are safe. Our schools are well maintained. We spend around $20 million a year across the schools maintaining their conditions.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, what additional audits have been done in ACT schools to ascertain whether switchboards in other schools might suffer the same fault as that at Belconnen high?


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