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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 9 Hansard (1 September) . . Page.. 2725 ..

MR OSBORNE (continuing):

In summary, Mr Speaker, I am disappointed with the way that it has been handled. I think Ms Tucker and her committee are the best people here to look at this issue. As I said, the Self-Government Act makes it very clear that this Assembly cannot force the Chief Minister to do anything, and I look forward to Ms Tucker's summing up.

MR STEFANIAK (Minister for Education) (3.40): As members no doubt are aware by now, the transfer of Youth Justice, which is Quamby, and young people on community orders to Justice and Community Safety has been done. In fact, the formalities took effect as of Monday, 23 August this year. This step was considered by government. The decision was taken to achieve greater efficiency in the delivery of corrective services in the ACT. As I think several members on this side have said, it is the prerogative of the Chief Minister and the Government to determine the way administrative responsibilities are allocated.

I had a look at the transcript of last week. A large number of members have spoken in this debate, most members, and I think that is appropriate because there were a significant number of recommendations from the coronial inquest. The coronial inquest also referred to the Stevenson report which had recommended about 25 major changes in Quamby. That was a report that was brought down in September of last year that was commented on very favourably by the coroner, who, I note, has effectively duplicated in his recommendations a large number of those recommendations as they were appropriate to this inquest. The Stevenson report was the very significant report last year on the administration of Quamby.

I thank members for their comments last week, having read the transcript, and the very kind words said by Mr Hargreaves and my colleague Mr Smyth. I also note the comments made by Mr Wood in terms of consultations and discussions he has had with people over the last few months; that they have been very favourable to the changes which have been implemented at Quamby over the last 12 months and which came into effect over the last six months. I also would like to put on record in this house comments I have made in the media, and which several members made during the debate last week, praising the work of Michael White, the then Executive Director of Children's, Youth and Family Services, and also the new manager of Quamby, Mr Frank Duggan, who took up his appointment, I think, in March of this year. They have done a considerable amount of work to put into play the 25 or so recommendations of the major report we did last year, together with the largely duplicated recommendations of the coroner.

It is interesting to look at the coroner's report. There are a number of measures there. He made some 14 recommendations. I think three were mentioned last week, but I think it is worth putting the other recommendations on the record. All of them have been implemented. Firstly, the Director of Youth Justice is not to be involved in the day to day management of Quamby. That was recommendation No.4, and that has been implemented. The director position has been deleted. Recommendation 5 is: "Is a manager on call at all times?". The previous system has been abolished and replaced with an improved system. Recommendation No. 6 relates to a review of the policy and procedure manual. That has been implemented and it is under constant review as procedures change.

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