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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 9 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 2344..


MR OSBORNE (continuing):

If the Labor Party is willing, as they are, to listen to us here and to be open and consultative and let us crossbenchers have some say, then please afford us that same courtesy. I have spoken to both the Greens and Mr Moore, and we are willing to support this censure motion, after they support our amendments. Basically, what I am doing is putting it back in the Labor Party's lap. You support us, give us some say in the budget, and we are more than happy to support you.

Debate (on motion by Mr Moore) adjourned.

Sitting suspended from 12.23 to 2.30 pm

QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

Discrimination Proceedings

MS FOLLETT: Mr Speaker, I have a question for Mrs Carnell as the Chief Minister. I refer her to the decision of the Discrimination Commissioner last year in the Dalla Costa case and to the statement made in the Assembly on 18 October by her Minister, Mr Stefaniak, that the Liberal Government stood by my Government's decision to accept the decision of the commissioner that practices of ACT agencies did amount to discrimination. Chief Minister, yesterday your Minister, Mr Stefaniak, turned his back on this decision and he acknowledged that the ACT Government will be actively reopening the question of discrimination in the appeal before the AAT. Chief Minister, will you override your Minister and show good faith, not just with the Dalla Costa family but with the ACT disability community, which is very gravely concerned by the duplicity which has been shown in this matter?

MRS CARNELL: Yes, the ACT Government will show good faith with the comment that Mr Stefaniak has made and with the disability community generally. As Ms Follett would know, the position of the previous Government was to oppose the discrimination claim that was taken out by the Dalla Costas.

Ms Follett: Not after the decision, no.

MRS CARNELL: Up until the decision came down. I think we have to be very careful here as to who actually opposed it. It was you guys who opposed it. We will show good faith with the disability community generally and we will act in line with Mr Stefaniak's comment.

MS FOLLETT: Mr Speaker, I have a supplementary question. I would ask that Mrs Carnell clarify the statement that she has given. If she wants to keep faith with the previous commitments given, there are two courses open to her. One is to avoid reopening the question of discrimination. The other is to take the suggestion that I think has been made by the president of the AAT, and that is that you instruct the officials that, when the appeal is heard, the ACT Government lawyers will not actively argue the question of discrimination. Which of those courses of action are you going to take in order to show good faith?


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