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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 07 Hansard (Wednesday, 30 June 2004) . . Page.. 3086 ..

Ms MacDonald: Anti-smoking Nazi.

MR QUINLAN: Anti-smoking. So the hospital is taking positive steps. I know a lot has been said. I will repeat what I said last evening, at the risk of a very strong adverse reaction. It is often said that our nurses are under strain. You just say that; it is automatic, we assume that. But I do counsel you to look at some of the figures and look at our productivity versus the rest of Australia before you make those claims.

Amendment agreed to.

MS DUNDAS (5.53): I thank members for their support and participation in this debate. I think we agree that health care outcomes for members of the community are paramount, and it is something we are all focused on. The motion calls on the government to offer free quit smoking counselling to all smokers admitted to ACT public hospitals. It is not calling on the government to ram this program down smokers’ throats; it is an offer of counselling—and it is the counselling that makes a difference.

It is not just information being provided; it is a one-on-one discussion with somebody who is in the hospital about the best way for them to get healthy, especially in relation to the detriment smoking will have on their health. I hope that that is clear. I think the concerns that have been raised by the government are a little bit over the top. This is a quite simple motion about health promotion in our hospitals.

The Treasurer closed by making a remark that we need to look at the statistics. Looking at statistics is one thing. The statistics might say that our hospitals are doing really well, and I would not want to doubt those statistics. But for each statistic I read I also get a call or a letter from a nurse saying that nurses’ working conditions are quite onerous, they are feeling stretched and they are feeling under pressure. We are talking about individual health care here, and our individual delivery of that health care, and supporting the nurses and doctors in our hospitals in their work to make the community well again.

Motion, as amended, agreed to.

Core values for school students

MR PRATT (5.55): I move:

That this Assembly:


the need for the presence of core values to be taught in ACT schools up to year 12 level;

the need for school culture to reflect the practising of those core values; and

that some schools are effectively teaching and supporting values;

rejects the Government’s piecemeal approach to the teaching and supporting of values; and

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