Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Sittings . . . . Search

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 10 Hansard (25 September) . . Page.. 3758..


MS GALLAGHER (continuing):

with any access to offensive graphics. Nonetheless, offensive text was returned in the search response.

The schools currently use a filtering service provided called Canberra Schools on the Net and that blocks all access to offensive material. This is the first reported occurrence of a problem in the last three years. Certainly, we will be querying CSN about how the incident occurred and how we can prevent such incidents happening again. We will also be querying CSN to determine whether other state education departments have reported similar incidents.

In relation to how it was dealt with at school level, the children were not upset. I guess there is always a balance to be considered-how do you discuss it with the children without inviting increased interest in the matter. However, the principal has certainly spoken to the parents who raised the issue with her on the weekend and again on Monday morning. The school has certainly addressed it.

I wanted to make sure that members knew that we were looking at it, we were taking it very seriously, and that measures have been put in place to ensure that it never happens again. I can assure members that the children did not have access to any pornographic or offensive material.

Questions on notice

Mr Tom Duncan

MR QUINLAN (Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Business and Tourism, and Minister for Sport, Racing and Gaming) (6.13), in reply: Mrs Dunne referred to questions on notice. I wish to point out, first of all, that members might look at the annual report from the Assembly and the statistics on questions on notice. I also wish to point out that, during the course of the last Assembly, which went for three years and eight months, something like 403 questions on notice were asked. After less than two years in this Assembly, we are heading for the 1,000 mark.

Mrs Dunne: I think we have passed the 1,000 mark.

MR QUINLAN: We have passed the 1,000 mark. Many of them were of considerable length.

I do recall Mrs Carnell, as Chief Minister, standing up in this place to bewail the cost of the number of questions that we had asked which, looking at the statistics in the annual report, was at a fairly normal level. The number of questions coming forward now is almost five times that rate and many of those are quite lengthy questions. We are interested in open and accountable government but, if this is just a childish tactic to keep the government moving or something, it is actually wasting taxpayers' money.

I also congratulate you, Tom, on your appointment. You follow a man who is much admired in this place and who had a great deal of confidence in you. You also have something in common in relation to an association with a football team that has a big appointment on the weekend. I am wondering whether it is part of the selection criteria for the position of your deputy that that person will have to follow Collingwood. I would


Next page . . . . Previous page. . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Sittings . . . . Search