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Acton Peninsula

MR CONNOLLY: I welcome Mr Moore to half of question time. My question is to the Chief Minister. Have you, Chief Minister, met with any representatives of the Southside Community Service, the Acton Peninsula child-care group or any of the other resident groups on Acton Peninsula? If you have not, who has? If you have, when did you meet with them?

MRS CARNELL: I have spoken to the Southside Community Service on a number of occasions on the phone. I offered, as did others, to attend some of the parent meetings. I think two parent meetings have occurred. In both circumstances my department was told that they did not want anybody from the Government or the department there. We obviously did not go. We do not go to meetings that we are not invited to. I have written to all of the parents who have approached me from the child-care group, and, of course, the parent groups that have not approached us as well. Certainly, we have been in touch with all of those groups. All of the people who have written have had very quick responses. The people who have not written have got in writing from the department exactly what is happening. We need everybody to be aware of the situation. In fact, just yesterday I spoke to the chairman of the board of the Southside Community Service. They said that they were very confident and very comfortable about the situation as it stands now.

Respite Care

MS TUCKER: My question without notice is to the Chief Minister as Minister for Health and Community Care. The integration of elderly people and people with disabilities into the community means that there are at present a large number of unpaid carers in our community taking responsibility for people with high support needs and yet not able to access respite carers. For example, Fabric and Respite Care are both unwilling to advertise their services as they already have long waiting lists to deal with. This is causing them considerable distress as they have to make very difficult decisions about whom to assist. Fabric, which provides family-based respite care for youth with disabilities, reported that they have over 80 families waiting for their services. Does the Minister have a strategy for dealing with this unacceptable situation?

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