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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 01 Hansard (Wednesday, 13 February 2008) . . Page.. 171 ..

problem so we are going to keep using it.” What an absurd suggestion! The capacity to be able to adapt to changing circumstances I think has been most recently demonstrated by the colleagues of those on the other side of this place in the federal parliament who, after 11 years of refusing to accept that there was any need for an apology to the stolen generation, have now taken the decision that is an appropriate course of action. If they had adopted the logic of Mr Pratt and Mr Seselja and others over there—

Mrs Dunne: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker.

MR CORBELL: they would never have changed their minds

MR SPEAKER: There is a point of order. Minister, resume your seat.

Mrs Dunne: This is about relevance, Mr Speaker. It is a question about FireLink. It is a fairly long bow to draw to move the question from a question about FireLink to motions in the federal parliament today in relation to indigenous affairs.

MR SPEAKER: The question went to whether Mr Corbell had misled the community or whether he had been misled. He will come to the subject matter.

MR CORBELL: I have answered the question, Mr Speaker.


MS MacDONALD: My question is also to Mr Corbell, in his capacity as Attorney-General. Can the minister advise the Assembly of the government’s progress in developing better facilities, support and programs for prisoners in the ACT?

MR CORBELL: I thank Ms MacDonald for the question. I am delighted to advise the Assembly of progress in developing better programs for those who are some of the most vulnerable in our community—people who are incarcerated for a term of imprisonment. Of course, this strikes very much at the heart of any government’s social justice agenda, recognising that those who rely most intimately on government services deserve the best level of support. I was very pleased to see that this sentiment was shared by Mr Seselja in his speech yesterday, when he said:

Vulnerable children, the homeless, the mentally ill, refugees, recently arrived immigrants, our Indigenous community, those on low incomes, prisoners, the aged and the chronically ill often have a disproportionate reliance on the actions of government.

We absolutely agree, and we welcome those comments by Mr Seselja. But unlike the government, which is committed to investing in the physical infrastructure and in delivering better programs to prisoners so that we can enhance their chances for rehabilitation in order for them to become more worthwhile citizens in our community, it seems to me that Mr Seselja speaks with a forked tongue, because in that same speech he criticised—

MR SPEAKER: Mr Corbell, withdraw that.

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