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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 31 March 2021) . . Page.. 661 ..


Wednesday, 31 March 2021

MADAM SPEAKER (Ms Burch) (10.01): Members:

Dhawura nguna, dhawura Ngunnawal.

Yanggu ngalawiri, dhunimanyin Ngunnawalwari dhawurawari.

Nginggada Dindi dhawura Ngunnaawalbun yindjumaralidjinyin.

The words I have just spoken are in the language of the traditional custodians and translate to:

This is Ngunnawal country.

Today we are gathering on Ngunnawal country.

We always pay respect to Elders, female and male, and Ngunnawal country.

Members, I ask you to stand in silence and pray or reflect on our responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Bushfires—recovery

Ministerial statement

MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella—Manager of Government Business, Minister for Corrections, Minister for Industrial Relations and Workplace Safety, Minister for Planning and Land Management and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.02): I rise to report to the Assembly about the bushfire recovery and the lessons learnt a year on from the 2019-20 bushfire and storm season in the territory. Last season the ACT suffered the driest conditions on record. After an already intense early phase to the fire season that saw the ACT deploy more than 2,100 personnel to support our interstate colleagues, the ACT was faced with our own emergency response to both fire and hailstorm. January 2020 was a month that showcased the resilience and strength of emergency services and Canberrans. All services involved should be incredibly proud of their efforts. Their commitment and resilience to keep the community safe has not gone unnoticed.

The government and all its directorates have learnt a lot from the 2019-20 bushfire season. Not only have we been informed; we have acted and continue to implement actions to benefit from these learnings. As part of this learning process, the ACT government has undertaken a number of reviews and inquiries in relation to the 2019-20 bushfire season, all with the aim of making improvements for future bushfire seasons. These include the Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements, announced by the federal government; the ACT Legislative Assembly justice and community safety committee review of ACT emergency services responses to the 2019-20 bushfire season; the report on whole of ACT government coordination and response during the 2019-20 bushfire season; and the ACT Emergency Services Agency, ESA, operational review, which took into consideration the individual observations of staff and volunteers received through the ESA’s internal after-action review process.


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