Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 8 Hansard (25 August) . . Page.. 2409 ..
MR KAINE (continuing):
I support the motion that Ms Tucker has put forward, but I think that sensibly the Government should review its position and at least hold its decision in abeyance until there is an inquiry which allows people to express their viewpoint and then it is incumbent upon us in this place to take into account those views before we endorse or reject the Government's decision in this matter.
As I say, I think it is a matter of prudence, I think it is a matter of equity and I just think that it is unwise on the part of the Government to force an issue like this when they do not need to do so. So I will be supporting Ms Tucker's motion.
MR SMYTH (Minister for Urban Services) (4.13): Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker, the coroner in the inquest into the death of Mark Watson at Quamby recommended that one government division be responsible for corrections. That was a very sensible suggestion from the coroner. The coroner also suggested that there should be an inquiry. The Government agrees with both. The Government has now made one government portfolio responsible for corrections as per the coroner's suggestion and the Government has agreed to an inquiry into the whole issue of corrections. I am not sure what is the difficulty with this matter.
This Government has said in relation to corrections that we think that there is a lot of work to be done on the issue of the adult prison. We do not see it simply as a centre where people will be incarcerated. We see it as a tremendous opportunity to allow those people to be incorporated back into society. Mr Moore has been to the prison at Mount Gambier and we have had the committee look at other prison sites. There is a tremendous opportunity for the ACT to do something special in terms of corrections. I think it is incumbent upon us to do so because as a jurisdiction we have always shown a willingness to embrace new methods, new tactics and new techniques to get the best outcome for the people most at risk and for the people who deserve that special attention from where it is they find themselves.
Mr Hargreaves: Lip-service.
MR SMYTH: Mr Hargreaves mutters about lip-service as he stands up and walks out, but Mr Hargreaves does not know what he is talking about. He saunters back.
Mr Hargreaves: I take a point of order, Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker. I ask for the member to withdraw that. I have not walked out. I just turned my back on him.
MR TEMPORARY DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Mr Hird): Order, Mr Hargreaves! Mr Smyth has the floor.
MR SMYTH: Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker, for the sake of Mr Hargreaves, I will withdraw the statement that he walked out. He started to walk out, but turned around. It seems that he has come back for a second go. That is just time wasting. Instead of treating this subject with the seriousness that it deserves, we have the childish interjection of "lip-service" from Mr Hargreaves. It is not lip-service. The whole issue of corrections is a very serious issue. Those of us who have young children coming into