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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 1 Hansard (12 February) . . Page.. 309..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

aware of their obligations of employment, whether set out in legislation, by determination, in an employment contract or in any other manner.

The code has also been strengthened with respect to the use of assets by ministers and the return of assets upon leaving office. The code also explicitly states that ministers are not to use information gained as a result of their position for their own improper gain. A section has been added stating that ministers should not appoint close relatives to positions in their own offices or any other place of employment where the minister's approval is required.

Redundant or unnecessary sections, such as a section dealing with special arrangements for Mr Moore as a minister and an independent member, have been removed. Ministers are personally responsible for complying with the code and for justifying their actions and conduct in cabinet and in the Assembly. It is not intended that issues relating to compliance or non-compliance with the code be determined or reviewed by any court, tribunal or other body. It is with pleasure that I table the revised code of conduct for ministers for the information of members.

Public Accounts-Standing Committee

Report 6-government response

MR QUINLAN (Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Business and Tourism, and Minister for Sport, Racing and Gaming): Mr Speaker, for the information of members, I present the following paper:

Public Accounts-Standing Committee-Report 6-Review of the Auditor General's Report 7 of 2002-Financial Audits with Years Ending to 30 June 2002-Government response, together with the tabling statement.

This report was presented to the Assembly on 25 September 2003. I have also tabled a formal, short, tabling statement, which I do not think it is necessary to read into Hansard.

Child protection

Discussion of matter of public importance

MR SPEAKER: I have received letters from Mr Pratt and Mrs Burke proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to the Assembly for discussion. In accordance with standing order 79, I have determined that the matter proposed by Mrs Burke be submitted to the Assembly, namely:

Child protection in the ACT.

MRS BURKE (3.23): The welfare and rights of our children should be among the highest priorities for any government. In the ACT serious failings within the Department of Education, Youth and Family Services regarding child protection have been revealed. I would like to read to you an extract from a ministerial statement tabled by the minister, Ms Gallagher, on 10 February 2004. She said:

On 11 December 2003 I was informed by the chief executive of the department that the department had failed to meet its statutory obligations. In a short brief that was

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