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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 16 August 2005 2005) . . Page.. 2763 ..


that they see there are things that can be met, particularly upstream, including things like social determinants of health and illness, which of course goes to housing, goes to nutrition, goes to the ability to keep a job. When we talk about, as the matter of public importance does, the need for new and expanded services in the ACT, unless we adopt an across-the-board approach, then we are probably doomed to failure.

The other thing that we must do is listen to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders themselves. They are best at telling us their problems and they are best at telling each other how to go about solving those problems. Mr Mulcahy and, I think, Mrs Burke talked about the deck of cards program. It is a deck of cards. It is really simple. It was developed by the Aboriginal Drug and Alcohol Council of South Australia. It is funded by the Australian government’s Department of Health and Ageing, the federal department. It basically outlines, in a deck of cards, what the problems are and what some of the simple solutions are. Sometimes the solutions are not about putting a whole lot more money into it, although of course the money, where it is appropriate and where it is needed, should be made available.

It would be interesting to run through one of the suits. I will run through hearts. I am told Aboriginal people like to play cards. I like to play cards. On each of these cards is a message. For instance, the ace of hearts says, “Love your people.” The two of hearts says, “Two standards drinks, recommended daily limit for women.” The three of hearts says, “Quit smoking.” The four of hearts says, “Four standard drinks, recommended daily limit for men.” Five goes, “Alcohol, go easy.” I am only reading one side. On the four edges of the card there are up to four messages.

Six says, “Sniffing petrol can cause self harm.” Seven says, “Petrol is poison.” Eight says, “Quit smoking.” Nine says, “Healthy body, healthy mind.” Ten says, “If you are addicted, so is your baby.” The jack says, “Don’t do drugs.” The queen says, “Sister girl says ‘if it’s not on it’s not on’, sexual health.” The king says, “Respect elders who live balanced lives.” When you take that simple suit of cards and look at the I want to be heard report, the clear message is that we need to empower these people to be able to do for themselves what they can best do.

The government is to be congratulated for the move of Winnunga to Narrabundah. They were very, very pleased at that. From talking to the people at Winnunga Nimmityjah, their concern was that, yes, we have a nice new building; what we do not necessarily have is the staff to run it. When we provide new facilities, new services in that way, we have also got to get the funding right.

There are a number of challenges there. Some of them have simple answers. Some of it, of course, will take money. The healing farm will take some additional funds from the Treasurer. We look forward to that money coming on board. We thank members for this debate.

MR SPEAKER: The member’s time has expired. The time for this debate has expired.

Public Sector Management Amendment Bill 2005 (No 3)

Mr Stanhope, by leave, presented the bill, its explanatory statement and a Human Rights Act compatibility statement.


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