Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 11 October 2022) . . Page.. 2837 ..
MR GENTLEMAN: It is an operational decision for the CPO to make sure that we are providing the safest opportunities for Canberrans. That is why we leave it to them. We do not give them directions on how they should use their staff. Of course, every single year, we invest more in ACT Policing. Every single year, through our budget, we provide more services for the Canberra community through more police and more operational task funding.
Opposition members interjecting—
MR GENTLEMAN: Of course, those opposite vote against it! We hope they do not do it this year.
Mr Hanson: Madam Speaker, under the standing orders on relevance, and under the whole principle of asking questions under the administrative orders, the minister is the minister for police, and we ask questions about what is happening in ACT Policing, through the minister. I think it is entirely appropriate and relevant that he should provide that answer. Simply saying, “That’s just a matter for police,” is not an adequate response. On relevance, I ask him to be direct and answer the question.
MADAM SPEAKER: He is being direct, in the sense that he is talking about operational matters on a day-to-day basis definitely being within the purview of the CPO.
MS LEE: Minister, will TORIC be a permanent part of ACT Policing? If not, why not?
MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Ms Lee for the question. These task forces are created every now and again to address specific issues that are occurring across the ACT. Each of the task forces that has been created that I have been involved with has been incredibly successful. No, most likely it will not be permanent. It will be used for its specific operational tasking, for that particular time where the CPO and the experts in Policing see that need. That will be dissolved at some point in the future when another task force takes on another operation.
MR DAVIS: My question is to the Minister for Homelessness and Housing Services. Minister, yesterday, Monday, 10 October, was World Homeless Day. Last Friday, 7 October, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare released a report into specialist homelessness services which showed that in the 2020-21 financial year there were 990 people experiencing persistent homelessness in the ACT, an increase of 165 people from the 2019-20 financial year. In light of this news, what is the ACT government doing to eliminate homelessness in the ACT?
MS VASSAROTTI: Thank you very much, Mr Davis, for the question. The issue of homelessness is one that I and the whole community share a real concern about. The reality is that there are people within our local community who do experience homelessness or are at risk of homelessness. I will reflect that some of the results of the AIHW report were quite troubling, particularly the issues around persistent homelessness. We absolutely have a vision here in the ACT for the effective