Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 10 Hansard (26 November) . . Page.. 3070 ..
Mr Hargreaves: Another senior public servant.
Mr Quinlan: Do not vilify a public servant.
Mr Hargreaves: He can have a go at me, but I cannot have a go at him. I do not intend to.
MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, can I ask for some quiet, please?
MR SPEAKER: Order! If you two wish to talk together, would you please go outside and do so.
Mr Hargreaves: Mr Speaker, I raise a point of order. I was responding to the mouthings of the Chief Minister, who asked me - I say "asked" instead of "demanded" - to shut up. I merely informed her I had no intention of doing so.
MR SPEAKER: Very well. Interjections are out of order, no matter which side they come from. However, Mr Humphries has the floor.
MR HUMPHRIES: These 17 new police graduates started work on 6 November. On the same day a press release advertised all over Canberra that these people are not up to the job, by way of their training, to carry on policing duties in the ACT. I do not know whether Mr Hargreaves feels that is a little bit inappropriate. If he had a concern about their level of training, he should have raised it, I would have thought, with the commissioner or with me or with somebody else. Simply branding these people as being inadequately equipped to do their job is a pretty poor and unfortunate reflection on them. I think raining on their parade was not called for. I can only echo the words of the Commissioner for the Australian Federal Police, Mick Palmer, who said:
This unwarranted criticism only serves to undermine and disrupt the working life of those members who joined the AFP today.
MR HIRD: I ask a supplementary question, Mr Speaker. Minister, has the member for Brindabella in question been asked for an apology?
MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, I never hope for the impossible. No, I have not asked for an apology. If the member concerned feels any tinge of regret, I am sure he will come forward and express his regret, if not to the Assembly, to members of the Federal Police who are so offended.
MS TUCKER: My question is to the Urban Services Minister. Minister, this morning you and I both attended a moving ceremony to meet with Bruce Elder, author of Blood on the Wattle, at the little-known memorial on the slopes of Mount Ainslie dedicated to Aboriginal soldiers who died at war. Speakers at the ceremony noted how,