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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 09 Hansard (Thursday, 23 August 2018) . . Page.. 3544 ..

MR BARR: The drafting of the exposure legislation was undertaken by parliamentary counsel looking at both the recommendations of the select committee and similar acts that operate in other states and territories. But, again, I do not want to pre-empt the committee’s report in relation to this matter. It is an exposure draft, and I am not going to give policy advice on the run or announce executive policy in question time.

MR COE: Chief Minister, would the integrity commission be able to look into the land deals that have haunted your government over recent years?

MR BARR: That would be a matter for the integrity commission once it is formed.

National Multicultural Festival—service of alcohol

MRS KIKKERT: My question is to the Minister for Multicultural Affairs. Minister, I note from your media release earlier this week that you now agree with the Canberra Liberals that the decision to ban community organisations from selling alcoholic beverages at the 2018 Multicultural Festival was not appropriate and lacked adequate consultation and engagement with the multicultural community. Minister, have you formally apologised to the community groups that were impacted by this decision, many of whom reported to me that it made them feel like second-class citizens? If not, why haven’t you?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Mrs Kikkert for her question. I would note that on 23 January this year, I did say on radio that the feedback might be that we went a bit too far with this policy, and that there was an opportunity to pull that back a bit. I note, and I have said a number of times in this place, including in answer to a question on 10 May, that I said from that point we would, of course, be reviewing this policy; that it may not have been the right way to address the legitimate concerns that had been raised about the amount of alcohol on the footprint and the level of intoxication on the footprint. I would note that—

Mr Hanson: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.

MADAM SPEAKER: Resume your seat. A point of order?

Mr Hanson: The minister has outlined the fact that she got the policy wrong, but the question was very specifically about whether she has apologised to the community groups that were made to feel like second-class citizens. Could she address the issue of whether she has apologised and, if not, why not.

MADAM SPEAKER: Minister, you have a minute to get to that point. Thank you.

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: As I was saying, legitimate concerns have been raised by a number of stakeholders, including stakeholders from the multicultural community, about the level of intoxication and the amount of alcohol that was for sale on the footprint. Feedback has also been received in terms of the safe and family-friendly festival that was delivered by the incredible Multicultural Festival team in 2018, including the multicultural community stakeholders, and that they thought it was a fabulous festival.

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