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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 9 Hansard (21 September) . . Page.. 3027..

DR FOSKEY (continuing):

The Human Rights Commission is still a bit of a black box. It is changing before our eyes—not that there is anything to see—even before it has been set up. I do not believe I am the only one who has concerns about what is happening. Indeed, concerns are also held by some of the people who will be members of the commission. Those concerns relate to how decisions will be made within the commission, how the commission will function, the reduced number of commissioners and the impact this will have on administrative support and other resources. So I will not be supporting this amendment. I know that my opposition will make no difference but it is a way in which I can express my commitment to the original concept of the Human Rights Commission, which is being eroded.

Amendment agreed to.

Bill, as a whole, as amended, agreed to.

Bill, as amended, agreed to.

Murray-Mackie study—recommendations

Ministerial statement

MS GALLAGHER (Molonglo—Minister for Health, Minister for Disability and Community Services and Minister for Women) (11.53): Mr Speaker, I ask leave of the Assembly to make a ministerial statement concerning recommendations from the Murray-Mackie study on deaths and near deaths of children.

Leave granted.

MS GALLAGHER: Mr Speaker, I present the following papers:

Murray-Mackie Study—Recommendations—

Ministerial statement, 21 September 2006.

Government response, dated September 2006.

I move:

That the Assembly takes note of the ministerial statement.

In April this year the Department of Disability, Housing and Community Services, with my support, commissioned a study into the individual cases of five children, three of whom had died and two who had experienced near-death situations in the ACT over the previous six months. The Murray-Mackie study was completed last month. In August this year I committed to releasing the recommendations of that study as a means of keeping the community informed of the progress of reform in the area of child protection. Today I am providing to the Assembly and, through it, to the community the complete set of recommendations of that study, which I will refer to as the Murray-Mackie study.

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