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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 01 Hansard (Wednesday, 2 December 2020) . . Page.. 75 ..

its best when we are at full employment. That is what the government is striving to achieve. We will do so through further investment in the Jobs for Canberrans program, through our infrastructure program and through our deregulation agenda that will be led by Minister Cheyne in her new portfolio of business and better regulation, to encourage the creation of more new jobs in our economy. That is our number one economic priority.

Alexander Maconochie Centre—incidents

MR HANSON: My question is to the Minister for Corrections. Minister, in relation to recent incidents at the AMC, the regional secretary of the CPSU, Ms Northam, said—and I’ll quote from the media:

It's not acceptable that it takes a riot and three code reds for the commission to take any notice. It is our hope that the new minister will fix the mess that former corrections minister Rattenbury has left behind.

Minister, is Ms Northam’s statement accurate and, if not, what has the union got wrong in its assessment of this situation?

MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Mr Hanson for the question. It is important, of course, that we look at what we can do best for staff and the residents at AMC, and that is what I have initiated. So in regard to the most recent activity I have asked the Inspectorate of Corrections to do a review of the incident itself and the lead-up to the incident as well. We will have a look at what occurs from that review, be it whether we need to look at more staff or re-use of the current staff—

Mrs Jones: Point of order, Madam Speaker, while this information is very interesting, the question was whether the statement put out by the CPSU was correct. He hasn’t gone in any way as to whether it was correct or not.

MADAM SPEAKER: There was also in the question elements of the riot and other activities at the jail, and Mr Gentleman is responding to that. Mr Gentleman, you have the floor.

MR GENTLEMAN: Yes, I was, Madam Speaker, and staff are my focus for this new portfolio. It is my intention to ensure that we can provide safety and a good working environment for those staff. In regard to questions from other people outside the Assembly, they are entitled to their own opinions. I will be working very hard with corrections management and the staff at corrections to do the best possible for the staff there.

MR HANSON: Minister, what specific mess left behind by Minister Rattenbury have you identified, as the new Minister for Corrections?

MR GENTLEMAN: I have not identified a specific mess left behind by Mr Rattenbury. I think Mr Rattenbury did a fantastic job as corrections minister, and I hope to follow that.

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