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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 10 Hansard (25 August) . . Page.. 4221..


MRS CROSS (continuing):

advocacy work that we do now. Elizabeth Thurbon and Carol Willey, the widows of asbestos victims, fought, persevered and lobbied just about everybody to get something done. I did this for them.

I must commend the minister, Katy Gallagher, because I know that she genuinely cares about the welfare of these people. Had it not been for the minister's offer to deal with me directly, rather than us having to have our advisers and lawyers and all sorts of public servants putting their own spin on things, this could have fallen off the rails. I compliment and commend some advisers in both our offices for their efforts. But this almost fell off the rails because of a variety of opinions and approaches on how this issue should be handled. I was so worried last week that this was not going to succeed that I went to her desperately and said, "Please, let's just you and I deal with this." True to her word, she did. I thank Katy Gallagher for that.

God bless George Wason from the CFMEU. I said to him that maybe in another life I would come back as a union rep, because the CFMEU both in New South Wales and in the ACT have been strong advocates to get something done. Not only have they supported the workers in the broader community but they have also strongly lobbied this government to ensure that this gets through with as much in it as possible, as was requested by the Asbestos Diseases Foundation. I believe-I hope-that that is what we have achieved.

I also have to acknowledge the HIA's Caroline Lemezina who was probably, of all the representatives of industries that I met with, the most balanced, the most logical and the most apolitical. Frankly, she looked at this in a clear way and offered constructive input. I commend Caroline Lemezina for that.

I have to also acknowledge my Assembly team and the support team outside this Assembly, some of whom are here tonight and some of whom are doing very hard work in the community. I dedicate this bill to the victims of asbestos; to their families-their wives, their children and their grandchildren; to my inspiration, Bernie Banton, who has asbestosis and who came all the way from Sydney, despite the fact that he has to travel with an oxygen bottle wherever he goes; and to his wife, Karen, as I said earlier, the person he refers to as his darling.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Detail stage

Clauses 1 to 7, by leave, taken together.

MS GALLAGHER (Minister for Education and Training, Minister for Children, Youth and Family Support, Minister for Women and Minister for Industrial Relations) (9.25): I move amendment No 3 circulated in my name and table a supplementary explanatory statement to the amendments [see schedule 1 at page 4273].

Asbestos and asbestos products are prohibited dangerous substances under the Dangerous Substances Act 2004, and any measures dealing with asbestos are therefore


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