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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 04 Hansard (Wednesday, 21 April 2021) . . Page.. 945 ..


mentioned, the community service orders, but these regimes need to be reviewed and improved. As I have mentioned, personal security in your neighbourhood, in your home, at your shopping centres and in your parks, is something of primary concern to the members of the community who I am speaking with. It is a shame it is not such a concern to this government. Thank you.

MS CHEYNE (Ginninderra—Assistant Minister for Economic Development, Minister for the Arts, Minister for Business and Better Regulation, Minister for Human Rights and Minister for Multicultural Affairs) (11.34): I am pleased to speak, quite briefly, in support of this appropriation in relation to my human rights portfolio. Funding in this budget will further protect and promote fundamental human rights by providing critical support to victims of crime. The ACT government will provide more resources so that victims of crime can receive the support they need to recover. This includes $1 million over two years, commencing in this financial year, for more resources to administer the new Victims of Crime Financial Assistance Scheme, as well as outstanding claims under the old court-based Victims of Crime Financial Assistance Scheme. These are additional resources which will improve the claims experience for scheme participants and ensure that the scheme continues to provide timely and such critical support to victims of crime.

There is also another $300,000 in this budget to bolster therapeutic support for victims of crime. This initiative ensures that victims of family violence and other violent crimes can access therapeutic support aimed at minimising the traumatic impacts of crime, and it assists victims and their families to actively pursue recovery. The additional funding for these initiatives will enable Victim Support ACT to provide services to promote victims’ recovery and participation in the social, economic and cultural life of our community. This is something that has always been important, but its importance has been underlined and driven home to us this year more than ever before. I commend this appropriation to the Assembly.

MRS KIKKERT (Ginninderra) (11.35): I rise today to speak on the state of our correctional system. Many of the things I will say will likely be no surprise to anyone listening. The sorry state of the Alexander Maconochie Centre has been well known to most Canberrans for many years. For anyone who needs a catch-up, I will summarise the issues that have plagued the prison in recent years—staff shortages; women being taken from their specially designed accommodation and placed in a secure male part of the prison; a rise in assaults against staff; the highest cost per inmate in the country; 11 years of overtime worked in five years; a riot; and frequent fires. And the list goes on.

Many of these happened under the watch of the previous minister, Mr Rattenbury, who, his successor insists, did “a fantastic job”. His mouth says “fantastic job”, but his action says “run and hide”. Instead of rolling up his sleeves and cleaning up Mr Rattenbury’s mess, Minister Gentleman has decided, at the cost of $2,000 a day, to outsource future planning of the prison to an oversight committee. This move highlights Labor’s and the Greens’ inability to fix the prison over the years that they have governed. Clearly, they have finally surrendered and accepted their incompetence. The minister has not tasked the oversight committee with one specific assignment but has given it a broad range of issues to look into. From the routine to


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