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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 2 Hansard (21 February) . .

Page.. 486..


absolutely confident in their abilities, skills and experience and know and trust that they are working within a continuous improvement framework.

I welcome scrutiny and oversight of the prison. It was absolutely staggering last week that the Canberra Liberals voted against the OPCAT bill. This bill allows for monitoring of places of detention in the ACT from the highest level, that is, the United Nations. It beggars belief that they would not support this level of scrutiny, scrutiny which I welcome as corrections minister. It indicates to me that Mrs Jones would perhaps prefer to continue to believe in her own misconceptions about the management of the AMC than have the United Nations subcommittee find to the contrary.

Madam Speaker, you can see that I have an attitude that is open to learning from mistakes. On every occasion where there has been an incident, improvements have been identified and implemented. That is the approach any corrections minister should take in a best effort to ensure that a prison is safe, secure and as human rights compliant as possible. The Greens will not be supporting this motion.

MR MILLIGAN (Yerrabi) (12.14): I thank Mrs Jones for bringing forward this important motion which highlights the government's repeated failures in this space. As the shadow minister for Indigenous affairs I feel it is important to speak to the government's policies and government failures when they impact our Indigenous community. In the case of the Alexander Maconochie Centre, Indigenous inmates have long suffered from a system that is haphazard and dysfunctional.

On 7 August last year, nearly nine months since the Moss review recommendations were made following the tragic death of Steven Freeman, two Indigenous inmates were bashed so severely that they had to be hospitalised. The Indigenous inmates were brothers. Despite the severity of their bashing, the inmates' mother was not informed of their bashing until the next day and in fact first found out their condition via a friend. This is not good enough.

The minister reported that there was extensive CCTV footage of this incident. If there was, why did it take so long for the perpetrators to be charged for this assault and why was the notification to the next of kin procedure not followed and the mother of these men not informed properly? This is yet another failure of the Alexander Maconochie Centre.

Minister, it seems that despite your being in charge for five years, despite the many recommendations made by reviews and despite the extensive—

Mr Gentleman: I wish to raise a point of order, Madam Speaker. The standing orders call for debate to be conducted through the chair, not directly to members of the Assembly.

MADAM SPEAKER: Thank you, Mr Gentleman. Mr Milligan—through the chair.

MR MILLIGAN: Sorry. Minister—through the chair—it seems that despite being in charge for five years, despite the many recommendations made by reviews and


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