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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 06 Hansard (Wednesday, 20 September 1995) . . Page.. 1594 ..


The Federal Government has indicated that for the Gallery of Aboriginal Australia and the Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies they are now looking at $25m to $30m in expenditure for the ACT, which I think is very exciting. Add to that our own cultural centre, and I think we could have on Acton Peninsula something very exciting for the ACT and for Australia. I would like to reaffirm this Government's commitment to working towards improving economic, social and political conditions for Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders in the ACT. We certainly will be progressing the implementation of the recommendations of the royal commission, and I am very pleased to hear from Ms Follett that there will be a non-partisan approach to this very important issue.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

ADJOURNMENT

Motion (by Mr Humphries) proposed:

That the Assembly do now adjourn.

Sex Workers - Police Records

MR MOORE (4.44): Mr Speaker, today when the Canberra Kookaburras were greeted by the Assembly and congratulated, the Chief Minister used a photo opportunity to be in the front row. It occurred to me that she was taking the role of hooker, which in turn suggested another problem about different types of hookers - not the football style of hooker, as she was in the photo opportunity, but the hookers at Fyshwick and Mitchell. It reminded me that the Select Committee on HIV, Illegal Drugs and Prostitution recommended that, where the other type of hookers, the prostitutes, had records that the police were keeping, the Minister for Police should ask the Chief Police Officer to destroy the records of such workers. My understanding is that that has yet to be done.

It is quite some time - I think, three years - since the successful legislation was passed in this Assembly on a vote of 16 : 1, and I think it is time those records for people who, under our present regime, have not committed a crime were destroyed. We have a situation where citizens of the ACT have inappropriate records kept on them, and I believe that it is appropriate that those records be destroyed. Where a particular person is involved in some investigation for a specific crime it is an entirely different issue, and of course the police may well find that there are specific records that fit into that category. Perhaps somebody is involved in a crime with drugs or some other issue that requires investigation. I am talking about the long-term records of people that were kept simply because they were sex workers. Those are the ones that need to be destroyed, and I call on the Minister to take action on that matter. Let me emphasise in closing, Mr Speaker, that it was only a kick, in my mind, from the front row hooker that was in any way reflecting on the Chief Minister.


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