Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 04 Hansard (Tuesday, 5 April 2011) . . Page.. 1323 ..
regaining control over its application in the territory. I commend the bill to the Assembly.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
Bill agreed to in principle.
Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.
Bill agreed to.
Sitting suspended from 12.34 to 2 pm.
Questions without notice
Alexander Maconochie Centre—methadone program
MR SESELJA: My question is to the Minister for Health. Minister, in the Burnet report, an informant is quoted as saying:
I have had clients that you know have told me that they’ve been coerced into going onto the methadone program when they’ve not wanted to.
Why are prisoners being coerced into taking methadone when they do not wish to take it?
MS GALLAGHER: I think the Leader of the Opposition is actually referring to the draft Burnet report, as the government expects to receive the final report tomorrow, after a final dialogue with the author of the report. So I believe it is the draft report.
Opposition members interjecting—
MR SPEAKER: Order! The minister is answering the question.
MS GALLAGHER: As Mr Seselja would know, unless his colleague Mr Hanson only dripped out certain pages to him like he did to the media on the weekend, the page before that talks of people who find difficulties getting onto methadone or delays in getting onto the methadone program. So we have perceptions around the program and how it operates, but I have no evidence before me that people are coerced onto the methadone program.
Mr Smyth: So the report’s wrong?
MS GALLAGHER: If I could just answer the question, there are over 200 prisoners at the Alexander Maconochie Centre. I understand there are about 62 of them on the methadone program at this point in time. Obviously, that changes day by day, depending on prisoners coming into and out of the jail. But there is no evidence at all that methadone is being pushed onto prisoners at the AMC.
MR SPEAKER: Mr Seselja, a supplementary?