Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 5 Hansard (9 May) . . Page.. 1419 ..
MR STANHOPE (continuing):
The Office for Women is currently overseeing the development of a whole-of-government framework to address issues surrounding violence and safety for women. Specifically in relation to indigenous women, the office is also developing an ACT indigenous women's action plan, which will form part of a national action plan for indigenous women. This plan is being developed in collaboration with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in the ACT community.
I have released a report by the indigenous health expert Barbara Flick into indigenous family violence, and my government is currently putting together our response.
The Department of Health and Community Care is currently developing a set of detoxification standards to operate under the Public Health Act (Australian Capital Territory). The government will work with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in the ACT in developing culturally appropriate education, detoxification, rehabilitation and outreach programs to address the increased rates of alcohol and drug misuse within Canberra's indigenous communities.
The government has funded an Aboriginal midwifery access program to provide appropriate midwifery support for Aboriginal women. The government has also recently funded an indigenous home and community care service to provide support to indigenous clients. This service has been extremely well received in the ACT community.
We have also provided $250,000 to increase access for indigenous people to mainstream health services. This funding was allocated following consultation with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Forum and will fund two additional Aboriginal liaison officer positions, two part-time outreach workers to support indigenous clients requiring overnight assistance, funding towards a sexual health indigenous peer support program and funding for cultural awareness training for mainstream health services.
I believe that reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous people is important to the health outcomes of indigenous people. I will be taking advantage of Reconciliation Week from 27 May to 3 June to introduce a range of initiatives to enhance the recognition and respect of the indigenous community in Canberra.
These are just a few examples of the government's response to the health and social needs of the indigenous community in Canberra.
MR PRATT: My question is to Mr Stanhope. On 11 April, I raised concerns about the unsuccessful attempts by the Tuggeranong Community Council to get you to speak to a meeting of that body. I understand that, as of today, it has still not heard anything from your office. Will you give a commitment today that you will speak at a meeting of the Tuggeranong council, at a suitable time, within the next two months?
MR STANHOPE: Thank you for the question, Mr Pratt, and yes, I do recall the earlier question that you asked on the subject. I am not quite sure what my diary commitments have been over the last two months, or exactly whom I am meeting in the future, but I do