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MR HUMPHRIES: Thank you, Mr Speaker. On the point of order, first of all, I indicate that I have not had the capacity to table any documents or to use any documents that Ms Follett has signed or dealt with, but I do have the capacity to see documents that were prepared in departments of the Government to be sent to her. Ms Follett, again, can clear up this matter, as I have repeated before, by simply going out to the anteroom and seeking a document which only she can have access to and telling the parliament exactly what was said. I am sure, given what I am about to read, Mr Speaker, that Ms Follett will have written in bold letters on that briefing to her, “Unacceptable”, “Not Government policy”, “To be rejected”, or words to that effect. Ms Follett can show us those words and, I would argue, redeem her credibility in this debate by doing so.
Until she does that - and she shows no signs of moving from her chair - I would like to read some of the words that appear in that document. This is a briefing from the Department of Health to Ms Follett about the implications of Dr Carmen Lawrence's letter to her about the closure of beds at Jindalee. It says:
The final agreement with the Commonwealth confirmed by Dr Carmen Lawrence on 10 June 1994 is based on no loss of nursing home bed approvals to the ACT nursing home system as a whole, i.e., some movement from the Government sector to the non-Government sector -
Ms Follett: No.
MR HUMPHRIES: Have you read the rest of the brief? It continues:
subject to an ACT Government commitment to provide appropriate accommodation places for up to 40 younger people with disabilities.
In respect of those 40 beds for young people with disabilities, it was said:
The Commonwealth will only grant those approvals to the non-Government sector.
I repeat: To the non-government sector. They did not even say to the not-for-profit sector; they said “the non-government sector” - anywhere in that sector. Then there was a second briefing, Mr Speaker, provided on 15 August to Ms Follett. There are many interesting things, I suspect, in that document, but in it it was said:
If resolution is not achieved -
of this issue of the nursing home beds -
there is a serious risk that Jindalee will fail to meet the Commonwealth's outcome standards for residents. The effect of this would be withdrawal of Commonwealth funding for any new admissions to the home and consequent advance publicity about the Government's inability to provide services which meet nationally accepted standards.