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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 7 Hansard (1 August) . . Page.. 2526 ..


government is delivering on. In addition to new firefighters the government is providing new paramedics. Members may recall that last year the government provided funding to allow 24 additional staff for the ACT Ambulance Service, including 23 paramedics, and these are coming through. Recruitment is ongoing for ACTAS.

I had the pleasure of attending the ACTAS graduation ceremony in May. It was wonderful to see the 14 new staff who have qualified across a range of areas of service delivery, including Certificate III in non-emergency patient transport (NEPT), Certificate IV in ambulance communications and authority to practise as an intensive care paramedic.

The safety of our community is paramount. Graduates are now fully equipped for the day-to-day challenges of working for the ACT Ambulance Service across a range of services provided. The graduates will serve the community in their time of greatest need. I have no doubt that they will contribute positively to the service, building on its strong reputation in recording the best response times in the country over the past six years and the highest levels of patient satisfaction. We are supporting our paramedics with additional staff as well as new equipment and fleet upgrades.

MS ORR: Minister, having spoken about recruitment of firefighters and paramedics, are you able to advise if ACT Policing has had new recruits recently?

MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Ms Orr for her interest in ACT Policing matters. Police officers, like firefighters and paramedics, do an important but difficult job in keeping our city safe as it grows. I am pleased that in the past few years we have been able to fund new initiatives for ACT Policing. The most recent budget included funding for the upgrade of equipment, as well as six new positions.

In my role, I am privileged to see firsthand the fantastic work our police do, and I understand the rigorous and thorough training that they undertake to join our force. That is why the graduation ceremony is such an important milestone for new recruits and a proud moment for their families. I was fortunate to attend the recent graduation ceremony and saw 25 new uniformed officers being sworn in who will join the ranks of ACT Policing. I also had an opportunity to talk to their families. It is clear that these new recruits are committed to serving and protecting our Canberra community as the city grows.

Keeping our city safe, delivering services and planning and building the infrastructure that our growing city needs is what this government has done, and will continue to do as we make the city even better.

Housing—affordability

MR PARTON: My question is to the Minister for Housing and Suburban Development. I refer to comments by former senior treasury official Khalid Ahmed in the Canberra Times of 16 July 2018 about the government's revenue driven land release policy. Dr Ahmed said:


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