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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 9 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 2414 ..

MR OSBORNE (continuing):

I took the opportunity today to speak to the officer in charge of the police who were there and he said that they are all travelling okay. One female officer who was there took the taking of a life pretty badly. I would imagine anyone would. It is a big decision, being a police officer, to remove your gun from the holster, let alone to fire it. Let us not be mistaken. When I went through the academy, if you were going to use your gun, you were going to use it for a purpose. It is sad that it got to that stage, but I think it is important that we remember that, as I said, the police were just doing their job. Perhaps the procedure was wrong, but what do you do when someone lunges at you with a knife? I am led to believe that it was only through this man having had some specialist training that he was not the casualty. I think we all agree that it was unfortunate.

I had a grandmother who had a nervous breakdown as she got older. Back in those days people were just shoved off to Gladesville, and you went to visit them once a fortnight or something. It must be a sad and lonely existence. Let us hope that something good does come out of this incident the other night. A lot of the debate has ignored the police involved, and I would imagine that they would be doing it a little bit tough. I, for one, would not like to have to walk around for the rest of my life knowing that I had ended someone's life. I would imagine, after the coroner makes his report, and hopefully everything comes across as being okay, that the man who pulled the trigger will always question, until the day he dies, whether he could have done something different. It is a great shame that we have to become aware of the problems of mentally handicapped people through one of them being shot.

Mr Speaker, I also stand up here in support of what Mr Connolly said, especially in relation to QEII. Having utilised the facility a number of times, especially with my son - - -

Mr Moore: And quite possibly utilising it shortly.

MR OSBORNE: Quite possibly within the next couple of weeks. I have to say I was a little bit disappointed when a report came out a few weeks ago in the Canberra Times that the nurses at the hospital were unjustly reported on and unjustly treated. I would like to put on the record, Mr Speaker, that I have complete faith in the nurses there, or the ones that I dealt with. I hope that before the building is bulldozed and sold off the Government will let us know what is going to happen with the new hospital. I have heard three different possible scenarios - one is Woden, then Calvary, and the third is an existing facility. I will not mention where because people will think I am biased. I do agree with Mr Connolly. I would have hoped that the Chief Minister could have come out and shown a little more support for the nurses at QEII, but such is life. However, I do hope that we in the Assembly are made aware of what is happening with the hospital there long before it is pulled down.

Mr Speaker, while on the topic of health, I stand up here once again and restate the support I gave to Mrs Carnell in relation to some changes in Health, especially with the Booz Allen report. However, as Mr Moore said, there is one area that I feel a great need to stand up for. I suppose it was after some consultation with Mr Moore on some areas we thought were pretty important to us. Obviously the first, and probably the most important to me, is the police. That area has been left reasonably unscathed, although they are missing $1m that was promised.

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