Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 3 Hansard (26 March) . . Page.. 628 ..
MR BERRY: My question is directed to the Chief Minister in her capacity as Minister for Health and Community Care. Noting that the Minister for Health has revealed that she will be moving the provision of mental health services at Hennessy House and Watson Hostel to the private sector, will the Minister reveal who was consulted? Noting the Minister's commitment to consultation, who was consulted? All we want is a list of them.
MRS CARNELL: The only person who indicated that Hennessy House or Watson Hostel was going to be flogged to the private sector was Mr Berry.
Mr Berry: On a point of order, Mr Speaker - - -
Government members interjected.
MR SPEAKER: Order! Government members will come to order.
Mr Berry: The question was: Who was consulted?
MR SPEAKER: I think the Chief Minister has answered.
MRS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, I am very happy to answer the question again. The only person who indicated that either Hennessy House or Watson Hostel was going to be flogged to the private sector was Mr Berry, and he did it in a totally unacceptable way. He did it in an attempt to undermine people who are working there and the residents of those places. Absolutely no discussions have occurred with regard to selling either of those institutions, simply because we are not going to do it. It is that simple.
What has happened, though - and Mr Berry might like to get his facts straight for a change - - -
Mr Hird: Why spoil a good story?
MRS CARNELL: Well, yes, that would spoil a very good story. Very informal discussions have taken place with the staff and others at Hennessy House and Watson Hostel with regard to possibly contracting out maintenance and hotel functions of both of those entities. At the moment maintenance and hotel functions are being carried out by the clinical staff. I do not know what Mr Berry thinks - whether he thinks hotel and maintenance functions should be carried out by the clinical staff - but I can tell him that the clinical staff do not think they should. We are looking at alternative ways to address those issues. Certainly, it is very much in its infancy. We have had a discussion with some of the clinical staff and with some of the other staff along these lines. Again, the only person who has indicated flogging off either Hennessy House or Watson Hostel is Mr Berry, and he has done it for all the wrong reasons.