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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 3 Hansard (27 May) . . Page.. 680 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

It is preposterous that such rights should take precedence over the protection of these people especially when, in some extreme cases, decisions made by mentally-ill people have led to their death.

Surely, a more balanced stance should be taken between human rights and protection, in the best interests of all concerned.

It is an extremely delicate situation and needs to be carefully considered.

Have human rights of the mentally-ill people gone too far?

The author also explores the Burdekin report and cites Brian Burdekin as her hero, and for obvious reasons. Remember that this is the view of somebody who has suffered from mental illness. This week is an appropriate time to think about it. One of the most moving things for me was a poster that I saw displayed today - and I imagine many of you have seen it - stating, "Some people call her mentally ill. Her parents call her Michelle". I think that really helps to put mental illness in perspective. It is appropriate for us, this week, to try to remember that it is an issue we have to deal with. We will try to deal with it as effectively as we possibly can.

Rural Residential Development

MR CORBELL (5.22): What we have seen from the Government today is an appalling mode of behaviour which is designed purely to defend themselves from even raising in this place an issue of significant public concern, and that is, the Hall/Kinlyside land agreement. So much for open and cooperative government in this place. So much for goodwill from the Government side of the house when it comes to debating issues. This issue is of significant public concern. It is an issue that the Labor Party made it clear prior to today that it wanted to have debated in the chamber during private members business this Wednesday. What we saw from the Government this afternoon was nothing short of a pathetic attempt to filibuster a debate for as long as possible so that they did not have to address these issues in the Assembly today.

Mr Speaker, this is an issue that the Labor Party treats very seriously. If this is the sort of behaviour and the lack of goodwill that we are going to see from the Government party and other members potentially in relation to the management of private members business, any other goodwill in this place will rapidly evaporate. It will not be, Mr Speaker, due to any action on the part of the opposition parties which have indicated their willingness to negotiate in relation to the business of this place and to accommodate the needs and concerns of other members. If we are not seeing that from the Government party, I have to say that cooperation and goodwill will rapidly disappear. I urge members in this place to not consider the Government's adjournment today as a normal matter of fact process. It was nothing more than a deliberate attempt to close down debate on a specific public matter. If the adjournment is approved by members this evening, I give notice now, Mr Speaker, that the Labor Party will seek other avenues to have the matter debated during this sitting week.

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