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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 2 Hansard (28 February) . . Page.. 443 ..

MR HUMPHRIES (continuing):

now be removed and that we will be able to provide appropriate levels of control of that kind of activity in the community, particularly in areas in the Territory where there are problems, and Tuggeranong is one of those places Mr Wood mentioned. I hope that citizens in that part of Canberra will appreciate this step.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.

Bill agreed to.

Ministerial Statement

Debate resumed from 24 October 1995, on motion by Mrs Carnell:

That the Assembly takes note of the paper.

MS TUCKER (5.13): This statement was in response to several requests from the Standing Committee on Social Policy for the Government to report to the committee on the implementation of aspects of the Mental Health (Treatment and Care) Act 1994, the Crimes (Amendment) Act 1994 and the Mental Health (Consequential Provisions) Act 1994. The Government agreed to report to the Social Policy Committee every six months. Specifically, the committee recommended:

... for the duration of the proposed interim mental health legislation, a formal monitoring mechanism be established whereby the Government reports to the Standing Committee on Social Policy every six months on the need for and provision of services, including legal services, for people with a mental dysfunction.

The Social Policy Committee became concerned at the Government's delay in reporting. The legislation was gazetted in September 1994 and commenced on 6 February 1995. I am able to report that, after several months' delay, the committee received the first report from the Government on the implementation of the legislation on 18 December 1995.

The committee has been concerned about mental health services for some time, and in December announced an inquiry into the adequacy of mental health services. There has been a lot of concern in the community about this issue, and it is very important that this Assembly take a very proactive role in looking at exactly what is going on in this area. The inquiry will encompass a review of mental health services and take into account the issues raised by the Government in its report to the committee. I look forward to receiving further regular reports from the Government on the implementation of the legislation. As mentioned in December, the committee has decided to defer public consultation on our inquiry until after the coroner reports on the death of Mr Warren I'Anson.

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