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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 13 Hansard (Tuesday, 25 November 2014) . . Page.. 3936 ..


feel safe in their homes and the wider community. Issues such as access to secure housing, positive interaction with statutory services and culturally appropriate support for families dealing with instances of drug or alcohol addiction, mental health concerns or domestic violence were all identified as factors that impact people’s ability to feel safe.

Consultation workshops also discussed the importance of developing education and employment pathways to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people transition through the different life stages as seamlessly as possible. Feedback reiterated the importance of early childhood development, educational support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in the ACT, and the provision of meaningful employment opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the territory. As we improve these individual areas we will build and grow strong families and a pursuit of our shared vision of equitable outcomes.

The Office for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs is currently incorporating the final feedback from the signatories into the agreement. The ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elected Body has provided valuable feedback on the focus areas and headline indicators identified in the agreement. I look forward to joining the Chief Minister, in my capacity as the Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs, as signatories to the agreement when the document is complete. I look forward to presenting the finalised ACT whole-of-government Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander agreement to the Legislative Assembly early in the new year.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Dangerous Substances (Asbestos Safety Reform) Legislation Amendment Bill 2014

Debate resumed from 30 October 2014, on motion by Ms Gallagher:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (10.29): The opposition will be supporting this bill. The bill is timely, as the public accounts committee is looking at the whole issue of funding the remediation of Mr Fluffy houses, and of course the Treasurer has just tabled the bill to fund that work. The purpose of the bill is to amend the Dangerous Substances Act 2004 and the Dangerous Substances (General) Regulation 2004 to adopt chapter 8 of the national model Work Health and Safety Regulations, which have been agreed to at the commonwealth level. The importance of harmonising work safety legislation is one of the key priorities of the Council of Australian Governments national reform agenda, and at that time the Work Health And Safety Regulations 2011 did not adopt chapter 7, which covers hazardous chemicals; chapter 8, which covers asbestos; or chapter 9, which covers major hazard facilities. These matters continue to be regulated under the territory’s dangerous substances legislation.

Together with the Work Health and Safety (Asbestos) Amendment Regulation 2014, this bill will harmonise the territory’s asbestos management framework with that of other jurisdictions, improving safety outcomes and reducing compliance costs for


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