Page 1267 - Week 04 - Thursday, 5 May 2022

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COVID-19 pandemic—school camps

MS LAWDER: My question is to the minister for education. Minister, why haven’t you responded to Outward Bound’s request from 22 February seeking desperate financial support?

MS BERRY: Requests for funding from the ACT government go through a budget process. Ms Lawder would understand that that is the process. Those kinds of things are considered in the context of the budget every year. I understand that Outward Bound has written to the ACT government and to my office, and we will respond in due course.

MS LAWDER: Minister, why is the ACT government the only government in Australia that has specifically banned school camps without providing any compensation to school camp providers?

MS BERRY: I am trying to understand the context of the question. I think it is with regard to COVID and the impacts of COVID in our community, and the ACT government’s decisions through the Chief Health Officer to—

MADAM SPEAKER: If you need the question to be repeated—

MS BERRY: I was trying to understand the context, because it was different to the first question, which was about Outward Bound; then there was a question about camps. I think it is to do with COVID. In the ACT our schools made a decision to ensure the safety of our school staff and students, and provided restrictions around operations of schools and school camps et cetera. Those restrictions are being discussed within our school communities at the moment, and I will be able to advise the Canberra community about any changes that will be made within our schools after those consultations are completed tomorrow morning.

MR HANSON: Minister, when can Outward Bound expect to find out if they have received a grant from the government, given that they were due to be announced on 14 April?

MS BERRY: I will take that question on notice.

Health—air quality monitoring

MR DAVIS: My question is to the Minister for Health. Minister, the pollution caused by wood smoke is an issue that has been raised with me regularly by my constituents in Tuggeranong. I note with interest the ACT government is undertaking a trial of four different models of low-cost air quality sensors to check the accuracy of data. Could you please update the Assembly on what this new dataset is telling us so far?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Mr Davis for the question. He is, of course, correct; ACT Health is conducting a trial of four different models of low-cost sensors and has been since early 2021. The sensors have been located at existing air quality

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