Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 10 Hansard (29 August) . . Page.. 3065 ..
MS TUCKER (continuing):
It is now rather disturbing to read in the estimates report that there still seems to be a desire to harass this service. While it is for government to decide which agencies they fund, attacking a service that works at the coalface with vulnerable people is unfortunate and undesirable. CARE has been in operation in the ACT since 1983. You would not think the Carnell/Humphries government would want to discourage people in the community from finding their own solutions.
The Estimates Committee recommendation coming out of this is that performance measures be put on the public record. Contracts between government and community agencies are of course public documents, so the recommendation appears to be irrelevant. Perhaps Mr Humphries could embrace with equal fervour the public availability of all details of all contracts with private business.
Finally, it is disappointing that no move has been made to provide a youth legal service. The youth sector have demonstrated that they are prepared to do a lot of the hard work in putting in place a model that would provide a youth friendly legal service with a fairly low cost structure.
On the question of the joint emergency services centre at Woden, Mrs Dunne talked about the change of policy on this and "a couple of people who whinged". I worked on that issue with the emergency service people themselves, and they were the ones raising the concern. If they were the couple of people who whinged, I would have to be concerned about the way Mrs Dunne sees the concerns raised by the people who work in emergency services, such as firefighters.
The argument these people put to the previous government seemed very reasonable, and I am sure they would have put it to Mr Quinlan when he was in opposition and it has probably affected this government's current policy. They were asking for an evaluation of the emergency centre in Gungahlin, which is a very reasonable thing to request.
I went out to the emergency services centre in Gungahlin and talked about the time it takes to leave when an emergency call comes in. I do not have all of the complaints with me, but one I remember was that the volunteer firefighters are in the same physical location as their children-because it is a bit of a social club thing happening out there with the volunteer firefighters-and the children are running around where these emergency service vehicles have to leave quickly. Some of the firefighters were saying they had to scatter children out of the way before they could leave the centre.
I would have thought it perfectly reasonable to evaluate how the current joint centre is working before going ahead with another one, and I do not think it is quite fair to say that it is just a "couple of people whinging". They are the people who do the work.
MR SMYTH (4.36): There are a number of issues under the JACS portfolio. In particular, I would like to concentrate on corrections, and I will start by reacquainting the government with the commitments they made before the last election. Labor's "Action plan for ACT Corrections" says:
Labor will instruct PALM and the office of Land and Property to provide a new range of sites from which to choose.