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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Week 1 Hansard (15 February) . .

Page.. 288..


women's sport up to be closer to the men's. Our support for this tournament again delivers on that commitment.

MS CODY: Minister, what has been the community response to the Twenty20 cricket in Canberra, now that we have played host to high profile matches in both women's and men's competitions?

MS BERRY: It has been very positive. Canberra has had and continues to have a growing record of involvement with elite level cricket, both national and international, women's and men's. The community demonstrated its eagerness to support international women's cricket during the recent women's ashes T20 series in November, when Manuka Oval recorded the highest match attendance for this series, something the ACT and women's sport can celebrate. A more recent demonstration was the return of the men's big bash league and the women's big bash league on 24 January, which saw a crowd of 11,319 at Manuka Oval for matches which featured the Sydney Thunder and the Melbourne Renegades.

Twenty20 cricket is currently the fastest growing and most accessible format of cricket, as evidenced by its increasing popularity at an international level and the outstanding success of the BBL in Australia. It continues to attract new, more diverse and younger audiences all around the world, and timing is perfect in the ACT for this tournament.

MR STEEL: Minister, what other investments has the government made to support all levels of cricket in the ACT?

MS BERRY: The ACT government has made significant investments in recent years to support cricket in Canberra through events and facilities for players at all levels. Works are underway at Manuka towards upgraded facilities for the first ever international test cricket match. I have mentioned the BBL fixture in 2018, supported through the ACT's partnership with Cricket Australia. The ACT government's commitment to cricket is further demonstrated by way of a $6.2 million investment in Phillip Oval. Mr Steel and I were able to go along and launch the cricket side of that project being completed. It really is an outstanding facility for elite sports in the ACT, for both women and men. It includes indoor training facilities that make training possible for local cricketers regardless of the weather and in what is a top-quality sporting precinct.

Health—mental health staffing

MS LAWDER: My question is to the Minister for Mental Health. I refer to a claim by the Australian Salaried Medical Officers Federation in the Canberra Times of 15 February this year that no permanent psychiatrists are working at the acute mental health unit. ACT Health claims there is one permanent psychiatrist working in the acute mental health unit supported by temporary staff. The Australian salaried medical officers also claim that ongoing issues around morale and the attractiveness of the positions compared to other states and territories is making it harder to recruit specialists. Minister, why are there so few permanent psychiatrists working at the adult mental health unit at the Canberra Hospital?


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