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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 10 Hansard (24 September) . .

Page.. 3169..


Mr Corbell, in both his speech and his amendment, has provided a level of explanation. I cannot imagine Mr Smyth necessarily agrees with all of that, but his motion seeks to draw out that information. Mr Corbell, in providing the amendment, I believe, has sought to address the issues that Mr Smyth has raised. He has provided a level of information. On that basis I will be supporting Mr Corbell's amendment today because it provides the information or at least it responds to the questions that Mr Smyth has posed, which I think is the objective of Mr Smyth's motion, if one takes it on face value and reads the text as it stands.

I am sure there will be continued debate about that because, as I said, both based on the interjections and Mr Smyth's earlier comments, I am not sure that he accepts Mr Corbell's explanations or necessarily agrees with them. But that is perhaps inevitable at some level. So we will no doubt hear further on these matters. I will be supporting Mr Corbell's amendment today.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (5.42): I thank members for their various contributions to the debate. As anticipated, the minister's defence seems to be, "No, I'm not distracted by capital metro because of these additional funds I got from the budget for all these wonderful projects." The logic seems to be that it is okay to have a toxic management culture because you can now suffer in a new building rather than the old building. The logic seems to be that it is okay for employees to suffer from misogynistic behaviour because they can suffer in a new fire station instead of the old fire station. The logic seems to be that it is okay to suffer from bullying because it is happening in the new fire station and not the old fire station. The logic seems to be that if you suffer from sexist behaviour, well, you should be lucky because you have got a new fire house in which it can take place.

It seems to me that it is okay if the defibrillators did not work when you went to an emergency situation and it is okay that the upgrades to VACIS did not work. The minister still has not answered the question: did the upgrade actually work? Has it been resolved? He ignores that. It is okay after six years that you do not have new uniforms for the Ambulance Service—but don't worry; you have got a new ambulance station to sit in for all this to happen around you. If you are in the Ambulance Service you can wait for your new pay increase because you can wait in the new ambulance station. Therefore, it is okay. It is okay if your work conditions are so bad that you had to go to WorkSafe to seek a provisional improvement notice to be put in place across all these new and old ambulance stations. That is okay.

And it is okay if you had to go to the Fair Work Ombudsman because you were not getting a fair go in the ACT Emergency Services because this minister is distracted by light rail. That is okay too because you can wait for that in the new ambulance station as well. It is okay if three or four of your colleagues have been suspended for a year or more because, if they are lucky enough to return to work, they get to go back to a new fire station or a new ambulance station. The minister clearly does not care about natural justice because he is too busy trying to save a minute on the trip from Gungahlin to Civic to be concerned about your life and your health. What a joke this minister is. What callous disregard he has for his employees whom he is responsible for in the ACT Fire and Rescue Service, the ACT Ambulance Service, the ACT Rural Fire Service and the ACT State Emergency Service.


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