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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 7 Hansard (24 June) . . Page.. 2303 ..



And what is the government's response? Again, they are weasel words that amount to a very long and drawn-out way of saying, "No, we're not going to do it."Nothing is happening in the area of sustainability, except the release of a very glossy brochure. Yes, it is a very pretty brochure and it has some very nice sentiments in it, but glossy brochures do not make a policy. Actions, words and real commitment from the people who stand behind it make a policy. That is what public policy is, Mr Speaker. Public policy is not glossy brochures about prosperity.

This is a sign of the single failing of this government. This government came into power and said, "We will be open, we will be accountable, we will have a culture change, we will do everything, we will do it with bells on."Every time you put them to the test, they fail. They have failed women; they have failed on sustainability. Over and again, the question was asked: "Has the Office of Sustainability been involved in this aspect, that aspect? Was it involved in the formulation of the budget?"Well, no. And why, Mr Speaker? "Well, they're money bills and the Office of Sustainability can't possibly be involved in money bills because somebody might get to know what's going on."Don't they trust the Office of Sustainability to keep to the rules and bounds set by cabinet? Do they not trust their public servants? Why is the Office of Sustainability excluded from looking at money bills, in the same way as the Office of Women is excluded from looking at money bills? They obviously cannot trust women either, Mr Speaker.

We are told about things that should permeate the whole of government, and again this government has failed in this respect. But I will tell you what they are going to do, Mr Speaker: they are going to have a whole of government enhanced communication strategy. What for? They don't have any policies, they don't have many ideas, and they don't deliver on the ones that they have. But at the same time we are going to have to spend $250,000 in this year and over $1 million in four years for an enhanced whole of government communication strategy. That is Spin Doctors Inc.

We remember the times when we had aNiMaLS up on the hill, where a whole swag of spin doctors came around telling Labor government ministers what they should wear, how they should dress, how they should disport themselves and what was acceptable and not acceptable. We are going to have a baby aNiMaLS down here. The new haircuts that are being sported by most of the members of the cabinet are probably a sign of things to come. We now have the standard Labor haircut. I am waiting for Mr Wood and Mr Hargreaves to get the standard Labor haircut-short, pushed forward and a little bit of gel.

But more is needed than that, Mr Speaker. We need a little more substance, we need a little bit more policy. We already have, as Mr Smyth has said, 19 people in departments doing PR. If they cannot be put together in a holistic way to coordinate the message of government-


: The member's time has expired. Would you like to use your second 10 minutes?


: Yes. We already have 19 people involved in public relations in and across government.

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