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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 6 Hansard (14 May) . . Page.. 1566 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

The Chief Minister went on to talk about Labor's agenda for older Canberrans. I made a ministerial statement on behalf of the previous government-I believe it was in July last year-on issues surrounding older Canberrans. I would urge the government to look at what we put on the table. There were some good suggestions, particularly on the release of land so that we can have suitable accommodation. We would like the Territory Plan to accommodate the use of community space for facilities for older Canberrans. Whether or not a hostel should be included needs to be addressed. That is one of the major issues holding back the process. We also put forward ideas on addressing the digital divide and access to services.

The Chief Minister's statement went on to talk about making progress on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs. We were working to get the indigenous business chamber up and running. The great equaliser of a job is something we all keep in mind when we talk about the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

The Chief Minister went on to talk about multiculturalism. I think there is commitment from all in this place to the multicultural community. ACT Harmony Day was held last March. You came dressed in a fetching orange poncho. It is important that we constantly talk about our multicultural community and what it adds to Canberra as a community and that when events like Harmony Day are upon us as many of us as possible participate.

The statement went on to talk about action on youth crime prevention:

By March next year, we will have established coordination measures to carry out this important task more effectively.

The task is service delivery and coordination of responses to young people at risk of offending. I would be delighted if the Chief Minister would update us on that.

The statement then talked about criminal justice data:

To that end, an early priority is the improvement of criminal justice data in the territory, so that we know exactly what is going on and how best to apply our crime prevention resources.

I bring it to the attention of the Chief Minister-indeed, all ministers, because all ministers have a significant role to play in crime prevention-that at the end of Operation Anchorage last year cabinet asked the CEOs of the departments and the Chief Police Officer to analyse the data we had garnered from Operation Anchorage. Operation Anchorage apprehended, from memory, 233 people suspected of burglary, and I am sure most of them have now been processed.

The critical thing was that we finally got a profile of the average burglar in the ACT. He is Canberra born and bred, he male, he is young and he probably has a drug problem. That data is available as a result of the sterling efforts of officers of the Australian Federal Police in Operation Anchorage. They reduced burglaries by more than 20 per cent-I think it was 21 per cent across the board and 25 per cent for house burglaries-as well as reducing the car theft rate. If that committee has not reported to the Chief Minister or if the Chief Minister was not aware of it, I urge him to ask them what they have been doing.

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