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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 11 Hansard (21 October) . . Page.. 3460 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

Yesterday Mr Stanhope asked whether the independence of the review would be comprised by the ACT Community Care minute. The review will be carried out by Mr Butt. The minute emanated from the middle ranks of ACT Community Care, a separate statutory authority. Certainly, if ACT Community Care was conducting the review, there would be a justifiable claim of conflict of interest. Mr Butt does not have any legal, administrative or managerial responsibility for ACT Community Care. There are, of course, additional administrative decision review mechanisms available if they are not happy with the outcome of this review process.

Returning to the matter of the minute, ACT Community Care assumed the provision of care to Macquarie houses under difficult circumstances in July last year, and many members will remember those circumstances. We have extended its contract a number of times so that CHOM could develop its proposal to manage services. This has been a difficult time for residents and staff at Macquarie as neither were sure as to who would be providing services at Macquarie in the longer term.

Mr Speaker, I do want to pay tribute to the managers and staff of disability programs involved in service provision at Macquarie. They are committed to providing the best quality care for residents at Macquarie and they have done so under quite difficult conditions. I also respect the decision residents and their guardians made to develop a proposal to manage their own care. The Government not only provided $5,000 to assist the process, but departmental officers also met frequently with CHOM and its executive to guide this process. It was with no pleasure that the department accepted the recommendation from the panel that CHOM's proposal not be accepted. I do not wish to say more as this matter will be under review.

In conclusion, I wish to assure members that, consistent with my advice last week, ACT Community Care has not been offered a two-year contract to manage services for the Macquarie houses. The minute presented by Mr Stanhope was the result of a genuine misinterpretation by staff seeking a resolution after a long period of temporary service provision. CHOM's review will be heard and responded to, and only if it fails will another party be offered a contract. When and if that happens, that party will consult with residents to ensure the hopes and wishes they had for CHOM can be reflected in the service it provides for them.


MR BERRY: Mr Speaker, I seek leave to make a statement pursuant to standing order 46.

MR SPEAKER: Proceed.

MR BERRY: Thank you Mr Speaker. I feel that I have been Gary-ed by Mr Moore.

Mr Humphries: Mr Speaker, standing order 46 confers a right for members to make a personal explanation.

MR SPEAKER: Correct.

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