Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 8 February 2022) . . Page.. 73 ..
Mr Parton: I do not think that the minister heard Mr Hanson’s question. It was: if this has nothing to do with the move from face to face, why has the satisfaction declined? I do not think he is moving in the direction to answer that question.
MADAM SPEAKER: You took a point of order within 20 seconds of him being on his feet. Minister, go to that question, please.
MR GENTLEMAN: Madam Speaker, I am very confident that the extra resourcing we have put into ACT Policing over the last number of years, and that we continue to put into ACT Policing, will ensure that we can have that face-to-face work with the Canberra community. Of course, the police service model is right about that. Not only is it putting more police on our streets; it is allowing them to have the personal interaction with the ACT community, ensuring—
Mr Hanson: Madam Speaker, on a point of relevance, my supplementary specifically excluded the issue that the minister is talking about, and specifically went to why satisfaction has declined. The minister is refusing to answer that specific question.
MADAM SPEAKER: I cannot direct the minister to answer, but he is responding.
Mr Hanson: He is responding, but he is not being relevant, Madam Speaker.
MADAM SPEAKER: He is being relevant on the broad question of ROGS and data. Mr Gentleman, you have 20-odd seconds left. No?
Mr Parton interjecting—
MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Parton, your colleague is on her feet, seeking the floor.
Mental health services—waiting times
MS CASTLEY: Madam Speaker, my question is to the Minister for Mental Health. Minister, the 2022 Report on Government Services revealed that only 41 per cent of mental health presentations at Canberra hospitals were seen within the clinically recommended time frame, the lowest by far in Australia. Lifeline has also revealed a 31 per cent increase in calls from Canberrans in distress between 2019 and 2021. Minister, why is the situation so bad for mental health patients in the ACT?
MS DAVIDSON: I thank Ms Castley for the question. We are continuing to improve mental health services in the ACT. That is why we invested an additional nine per cent in mental health services in the ACT budget. This includes a range of mental health services based at the Canberra Hospital but also more services in the community. Things like the Safe Haven that has recently opened, the MindMap youth navigation portal to help connect young people to the right mental health services in the community, and more investment in the PACER service will all help in reducing the number of people who need to go to emergency for mental health services. Over a period of time, we should start to see that this has an impact on people’s improved mental wellbeing and people being able to stay in a recovery space for longer, instead of being in a crisis.