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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 13 Hansard (12 December) . . Page.. 3974..


MR CORBELL (continuing):

Secondly, in relation to the so-called trial at the southern brigade, which I understand was instigated by the southern brigade, it is probably worth putting on the record that at a recent training session offered by the RFS, of southern brigade members on firelink, only three attended. They showed little or no interest in it and left before the training session was finished.

MR PRATT: I ask a supplementary question. Minister, how much longer will we have to wait and how much more money will have to be spent before firelink works properly.

MR CORBELL: No more money has to be spent and no more time has to be waited because the system is now operational.

Housing—Kanangra Court

MRS BURKE: My question is to the Minister for Housing. Minister, over the past few years we have had considerable problems with crime and antisocial behaviour in ACT public housing complexes. Recently, Housing ACT apparently had to employ security guards at Kanangra Court for a short period to protect tenants. The question remains, however: why did Canberra Community Housing for Young People also have to hire security guards to patrol Kanangra Court for a period of time in early November to protect its clients from incidences of violent crime and antisocial behaviour in the Kanangra Court complex? What form of compensation will you be offering this organisation for costs incurred by employing security guards?

MR HARGREAVES: Mr Speaker, we addressed this question in part, I guess, in the annual report hearings recently and I tried to make the point there—and the point was accepted by most of the people there but obviously not by Mrs Burke—that criminal behaviour is a matter for the police; it always has been and it always will be.

We have some multiunit developments around the place and we acknowledge that there are some undesirable elements contained in them. We do not see, however, any acknowledgment that in some of the multiunit developments in the private sector there are undesirable elements as well; we do not seem to sheet home to those landlords the responsibility for addressing antisocial and criminal behaviour in those. However, the opposition say that we have to take full responsibility for that behaviour.

Indeed, I think we go that extra yard. We put on security guards around those complexes to enable the residents in there to have someone to talk to—some visibility to discourage people from undertaking criminal and antisocial behaviour. Instead of criticising the government for that, I think the opposition should be congratulating us for it. I have a message for those people who do feel unsafe and I have said this a thousand times: Crimestoppers and triple zero. They need to do that.

We have a very good relationship with the police. Indeed, the last one Mrs Burke was criticising us for was Fraser Court. She did not acknowledge that we have regular meetings with the residents there—in the community room which was provided by the government. In fact, we do provide those security officer services to patrol those parts


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