Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 1 Hansard (8 December) . . Page.. 4006 ..
MS CARNELL (continuing):
These figures show that the ACT has fewer than 10 people living on the streets or in makeshift accommodation. That is the lowest in Australia. I suppose the good part is that it shows that people in the ACT who are not accommodated in the way that they would choose do have a roof over their heads. That is something we should be proud of.
The ACT also has double the Australian average for public housing on a population percentage basis. I suspect that if we can improve the efficiency of our SAAP accommodation and do what we are already doing - improving the efficiency of our public housing - the ACT will be well placed to address these problems.
MR WOOD: My supplementary question focuses, as a supplementary question should, on something the Chief Minister said. Can the Chief Minister understand that the example she cited of a person who was living in a pretty expensive unit, whether he owned it in total or in part, and is about to move into another place somewhere indicates that she was not really sympathetic and does not understand the nature of the problem that I have been questioning her about?
MS CARNELL: That is nonsense. These figures are based upon work done by the head of sociology at Monash University, who put out a report on this, and on the 1996 census. If in the situation I spoke about Mr Humphries' senior adviser was staying with family on that night, he would have been in the statistics. That is the reality. What I was pointing out is that there are different people in those statistics. I went on to say quite definitely that the ACT takes these issues very seriously.
It is good, too, that housing affordability in the ACT is amongst the best, if not the best, in Australia. That is good news. It is good news that we have more public housing than anywhere else in Australia. There are a lot of issues here that we should be proud of, including the fact that even on these statistics we have the lowest percentage of homeless people, as defined in these statistics, in Australia. That has to be something that we all think is good, but we can do better.
I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.
MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, can I add some information to a question asked earlier by Mr Osborne? I understand that CTEC is arranging comprehensive insurance against rain and other problems that may occur with regard to the V8 race, to minimise the risk involved.