Page 2607 - Week 08 - Thursday, 30 June 2005

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There seems to be a particular resonance that that house is in Yarralumla. Hey, don’t poor people have a right to live there? Do we get rid of every house in Yarralumla that is a public house, taking out market renters? It is interesting that quite a number of houses possibly in this category—we do not know and I certainly do not know—are in the inner suburbs. I do not know about that; it is just a suspicion. I guess if you know how many millionaires are in public housing, then you probably know the answer to that.

Taking out market renters and selling all houses within a 10-kilometre radius of Civic is not going to result in better access to housing for people who are homeless. It is going to shrink the public housing stock and force the few people in public housing to live on the outskirts of Canberra, where access to jobs, transport and other amenities is much harder.

In this, I have not even addressed the issues about public housing being a home and all the other good social reasons why Canberra has this policy. There is so much stuff that you people could read. You could learn something. Instead of sticking to a particular ideological position, you could go out and read things and inform yourselves. So that is what I suggest you do.

Mr Pratt: You cannot justify your own position. Why are you asking—

DR FOSKEY: I am not justifying my position, Mr Pratt.

Mr Pratt: It sounds like you are. You are far too defensive.

DR FOSKEY: Mr Pratt, I am speaking about it tonight, for the first time.

MR SPEAKER: Direct your comments through the chair, please, Dr Foskey.

DR FOSKEY: Thank you. That is all that I really need to say in this second speech. I felt it was very important to address some of the misconceptions that have been promulgated from that side of the house.

MRS BURKE (Molonglo) (8.51): It is unfortunate that Dr Foskey did raise this tonight. We cannot move from this place until we get a few things straight, as Dr Foskey herself says. I start with Mr Hargreaves who would wish that I was, as he had suggested—and I won’t even use the words “quite childish and puerile”—not as diligent in my work as a shadow minister, I expect. I have to point out to members in this place that I am doing his work for him—that is okay—like I did for Mr Wood before him.

Members interjecting—


MRS BURKE: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Through you: let us take our minds back, in fact, to the time when the revelation, so-called was made—and it was not by me, and I will talk about it in a moment—of Dr Foskey living in public housing. I wish to put it on the record in this place that it was introduced to the media by a concerned member of the public, I recall, on ABC talkback radio with the Chief Minister on Friday morning something like 13 May. Also, I will put it on the record in this place—and members will

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