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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 1 Hansard (20 February) . . Page.. 39 ..

Minister for Urban Services - Staff

MR BERRY: My question is to Mrs Carnell in her capacity as Chief Minister. I ask Mrs Carnell to explain to the Assembly why it is that female staff in Mr De Domenico's office are being moved out of the office and replaced with male staff. Would you advise the Assembly why this is the case? And do not try on the coincidence line.

MRS CARNELL: I am very happy to try to answer this question, but I really have very little to do with Mr De Domenico's staffing.

MR SPEAKER: Order! I am not sure that this falls necessarily within Government policy or, indeed, the Chief Minister's portfolio responsibilities.

MRS CARNELL: I am absolutely confident that it does not.

Mr Berry: Perhaps Mrs Carnell will deny that it was done on her instructions.

MR SPEAKER: Just a moment. Order! I cannot allow a rhetorical question of that nature to be asked.

Mr Humphries: I have a point of order, Mr Speaker. It is fairly clear that our friends opposite have resorted to the lowest form of muckraking yet again. We have seen this happen time and again. The clear inference of Mr Berry's - - -

Mr Berry: On a point of order, Mr Speaker - - -

Mr Humphries: I am taking a point of order. Do you mind?

MR SPEAKER: I will hear your point of order in a minute, Mr Berry.

Mr Humphries: The clear inference of Mr Berry's question was that Mrs Carnell is somehow taking women out of Mr De Domenico's office for some issue related presumably to sexual harassment claims made last year against Mr De Domenico, of which he was cleared by the Discrimination Commissioner. That is clearly the inference of the question. It is a low, sneaky and unparliamentary tactic, and I would ask that you ask Mr Berry to withdraw the suggestion.

MR SPEAKER: I will now hear your point of order, Mr Berry.

Mr Berry: I think you should get Mr Humphries to withdraw the suggestion. I did not make it.


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