Page 266 - Week 01 - Thursday, 9 December 2004

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Health—job cuts

MR CORBELL: Mr Smyth asked me a question in relation to redundancy provisions for nursing staff. I am happy to advise Mr Mulcahy that, first of all, section N of the ACT public sector nursing staff agreement 2004-07 provides the full entitlement that nurses are entitled to when affected by redeployment or redundancy.

In respect of redundancy payments, a nurse is entitled to a period of notice of one month or five weeks if the employee is over 45 years of age and has completed at least two years of continuous service and payment of two weeks salary for each completed year of continuous service, plus a pro rata payment for completed months of continuous service since the last year of continuous service, with a maximum cap of 48 weeks, or 26 weeks salary, whichever is greater.

ACT nurses were commonwealth public servants prior to employment by the ACT government under the Public Sector Management Act in 1994, and the arrangements are consistent with the awards and agreements instituted and continued under the previous Liberal government. The only change since self-government is the minimum entitlement to 26 weeks, which is consistent for all ACT public servants.

Budget—community input

MR STANHOPE: Mr Speaker, in question time today, I took a question from Dr Foskey in relation to consultation with the community sector in relation to the budget. I have been advised, through a note from the Treasurer’s office, that the Treasurer’s office has arranged for letters to be sent to all community groups within the ACT in relation to the budget. The letter explains that submissions would be welcome between now and February, and the Treasurer’s office explains, as I did, that, with the shortened budget process this year as a result of the election, timeframes are tight but we are willing to receive written submissions and willing to consult and meet with representatives, as we are able, during that time. Written submissions have been invited between now and February.

Education—staff behaviour

MS GALLAGHER: Yesterday in question time, Mr Pratt asked me how many instances of inappropriate action by staff regarding improper contact with students had there been in the past year. Mr Speaker, the Department of Education and Training takes all allegations seriously. There have been 15 investigations this year, resulting in two dismissals.

Children—Weston Creek centre

MS GALLAGHER: Mr Seselja asked me earlier in question time today about the rebuilding of the Weston Creek childcare centre. The childcare centre is in its final design stage; meetings are to be held with children’s centre operators next week. Tenders for the rebuilding will be called in January 2005, with completion still expected by next year.

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