Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 7 Hansard (18 October) . . Page.. 1824 ..

MR OSBORNE (continuing):

This boy cannot have an operation to fix his knee for another seven years, when his leg will be fully grown. I am sorry, Minister, but this is just not good enough. I am very happy that the elite sports program at the ACT Academy of Sport has been set in concrete, but I feel that something needs to be done now to stop our sports fields from maiming these young players, who will never, I suppose, participate at the elite level, and to ensure that they have some future with sport. In this respect the budget was disappointing, as I had hoped that these two concerns about facilities would have attracted a bit more attention from the Government.

MR MOORE (4.05): Mr Speaker, if I were the Minister who put out this statement I would be embarrassed. If he is not embarrassed now, I hope that by the end of my speech he will be embarrassed. Mr Speaker, this is a ministerial statement on government support for sport and recreation, and what is not said in it is the most critical thing. The word "recreation" is mentioned a couple of times but only in the context of bodies that have the word "recreation" in their name. So where is the recreation, Minister? What are you doing about it? Are you just a Minister for Sport, or are you a Minister for Sport and Recreation?

Following on from the supplementary question I asked at question time today, it is fine to be supporting things about sport, and I encourage you in that; but there is a flip side. There are two sides to it, and the second side is recreation. In schools, for example, where we get three hours of compulsory sport - and you talk about the eight key learning areas - we find that students who have been involved in music programs are no longer able to do so. The question I asked you at the time, which you did not attempt to wrestle with, perhaps for good reason, was this: Is there some intrinsic value in sport that is higher than the intrinsic value in music? As far as my children are concerned, I want them to be involved in sport, but I also want them to be involved in music, in drama, and in other recreational activities, whether it be bushwalking or whatever.

As I open the paper, Mr Speaker, I see that I did miss the word "recreation" used in one spot other than in a title. On page 2, in a dot point there, you talk about encouraging community involvement in sport and recreation. But my theme still remains the same. By and large, the whole paper concentrates entirely on sport, with hardly a mention of recreation, and I think that should be an embarrassment to you, Minister. I do not know to whom you passed the speech around to double-check, but I would have thought that your department would have drawn to your attention that there was an area here that had been missed. You could have gone on for another two or three pages anyway to deal with the issue of recreation.

Having dealt with you, Minister, for a quite long time - on and off for six or seven years - I understand that you do have a genuine commitment to recreation. It is overweighed in your own mind, I am sure, by your enthusiasm for sport; but I think that in this instance, when you were making a statement on sport and recreation, you had to do exactly that, and I think that is disappointing. I found it very interesting, Minister, that on page 7 of the statement, as you put it out, when you were talking about physical education and school sport, you said this:

As the Minister for both portfolios I have been able to tackle this issue "head-on" (like a strong forward in a scrum) ...

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .