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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 4 Hansard (25 June) . . Page.. 1026 ..

MR WOOD (continuing):

I believe that the committee will focus on broad issues of men's health and wellbeing, including aspects of masculinity. The committee will also look at specific health matters relating to men. Submissions will be sought soon and, as you would expect, public hearings will be held later in the year. I expect that this will be a useful and beneficial inquiry.

I might comment on one other matter that arose as we examined this issue, and that is the role of the committee. There are still some views - unclear views, I might say - about how committees may perform their function following the change in the committee structure. I note that the Pettit report said that committees will track Ministers' agencies. In this inquiry, it is certainly the case that we will be pretty well contained within the Department of Health and Community Care. But I think it is the view around committees that there will be inquiries and activities of committees that will cross ministerial boundaries. While that may not happen on this occasion, the Health and Community Care Committee will in the future perhaps look at matters that will involve other areas. I am sure that other committees would have the same view and will be moving in that direction as the need takes them.

Inquiry into Preschool Education

MS TUCKER: Mr Speaker, pursuant to standing order 246A, I wish to inform the Assembly that on 4 June 1998 the Standing Committee on Education resolved to inquire into and report on the future provision of preschool education. The terms of reference are as follows:

Inquire into and report on the future provision of preschool education, with particular reference to:

(1) access;

(2) the changing demographic patterns in the ACT;

(3) the need to consider a greater range of program options to meet the needs of the community;

(4) any other related matter.

I ask for leave to make a statement.

Leave granted.

MS TUCKER: In addition to the terms of reference I have just referred to, the Assembly has now agreed that the Education Committee take on an additional term of reference, namely:

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