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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2019 Week 07 Hansard (Thursday, 1 August 2019) . . Page.. 2718 ..


Public housing—Ainslie Village

Ms Berry (in reply to a question by Ms Le Couteur on Thursday, 16 May 2019):

In response to the Member’s questions, I can inform the Assembly that the University of Queensland have delivered the final report for the study into support requirements and accommodation options for people in the ACT with high and complex service needs. The report will be released in the coming weeks.

Schools—vandalism

Ms Berry (in reply to a question and supplementary questions by Ms Lee and Miss C Burch on Thursday, 16 May 2019):

1) The safety and security of Canberra public schools is very important. The Directorate works closely with schools and their community to identify security measures that might contribute to the school being a safe and secure environment. The Directorate also works closely with ACT Policing by proactively reporting incidents and providing information for their investigations.

There are a range of strategies the Directorate takes in order to provide a safer environment not only for students, staff and visitors, but also to protect school facilities. These strategies include the installation of security fences, community education, external security lighting, internal electronic security systems, motion detectors, security screen or security film treatments to strengthen windows and glazed doors, strengthened doors and window locks, the removal of potential projectiles from school grounds and local security patrol programs conducted throughout the year.

The implementation of these strategies have contributed to a 72% reduction in the number of vandalism incidents between 2009 and 2018.

The Directorate is currently undertaking a rolling program of security risk assessments. The Security Risk Assessments will provide the Directorate with strategies where appropriate to further strengthen physical security measures.

2) Averaging over a period of three years, the cost is approximately $260,000 per annum.

3) Depending on the nature of the vandalism and whether it has been significant or not, vandalism incidents at schools often means unscheduled repair work, which can potentially create minor disruptions on school sites while repairs are carried out. In cases of significant vandalism, for example the latest vandalism incident meant that 300 students needed to be relocated to another school to ensure continuity of their education whilst repairs and maintenance was carried out.

The ACT Government sees public schools as community assets and we want to encourage community access wherever possible. Unfortunately, despite a downward trend in recent years, vandalism remains a reality the government and schools need to manage.


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