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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 2 Hansard (10 March) . . Page.. 504 ..



surrounding the Government's proposal to establish a drug injecting room and that there is undoubted public and media interest in this issue, I wonder whether she might clarify for me whether she thinks it would be appropriate for me to release the legal advisings.

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, what a stupid question. Mr Speaker, you have to start worrying about question time. To start with, the supplementary question had absolutely nothing to do with naltrexone trials. You would have to ask about the supplementary question in terms of its capacity at all. Mr Speaker, it is not appropriate for legal opinions to be released in this place.

Mr Berry: They are not legal opinions to you. They were provided to us.

Mr Humphries: Not to you either.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Chief Minister, please go on.

MS CARNELL: Thank you, Mr Speaker. They were not, as Mr Humphries says, legal opinions to the Opposition as well. Mr Speaker, I believe very strongly that a bipartisan approach is the only way forward in the drug area. These are very difficult areas, very important areas. I have to say that the ACT has been right out there, leading Australia, in terms of the debate. There are people in this house who have very different views in areas of drug law reform, safe injecting places, heroin trials, naltrexone trials, buprenorphine trials or whatever. There are very different views in this place, as you would know, Mr Speaker. It is essential, though, that we have a bipartisan approach, in fact, maybe a nonpartisan approach, to this important area. Mr Speaker, I am not sure that a nonpartisan approach would run to a question in question time on the scientific efficacy of particular trials and why I might have put out a press release. If those opposite were really interested in a nonpartisan approach, Mr Stanhope would have asked me a question about why that press release went out and why Dr Nick Glasgow was the person who was available for interviews on the naltrexone trial. Then he would not have been embarrassed.

Mr Stanhope: I do not feel a bit embarrassed.

MS CARNELL: Well, you should be embarrassed. We are always very keen to go down the path of a nonpartisan approach - - -

Mr Stanhope: What, that I respect something in confidence? I have learnt not to do it again.

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, maybe the Opposition could learn a lot from - - -

Mr Stanhope: I have learnt not to trust the Government.


MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, maybe the Opposition could learn a lot from the position that - - -

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