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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 12 February 2008) . . Page.. 73 ..

The involvement of Corrective Services staff in the planning of the new prison has already caused the majority of the issues addressed in the report to be recognised and included in planning for the AMC. The result of this is the ready agreement by the government to the overwhelming majority of the recommendations and notation of progress towards their implementation. The report contains a total of 98 recommendations. The government agrees with 70 of the recommendations, agrees in principle with 10, agrees in part with four, notes a further 10 and does not agree with just four recommendations. Details of the reasons for these responses can be found in the government response, which I have just tabled.

Significantly, it should be noted that 40 of the recommendations had already been implemented at the remand centres or planned for implementation at the AMC prior to the audit beginning and an additional nine recommendations have been implemented to date. Progress on the AMC over the course of the audit was shared with the authors and again prior to the tabling of the final report. Some recommendations in the report do not acknowledge that the issues identified were already recognised and planned for by ACT Corrective Services.

The government believes that future audits of this nature would benefit from the approach taken by inspectors of custodial services in other jurisdictions to include as part of the audit team persons who are familiar with corrections practices and with best practice in the management of prisons. This will allow greater understanding of why some procedures are carried out in a correctional setting, as well as the opportunity to challenge these procedures if they are outmoded.

The audit report provides commentary on and a checklist of standards that need to be applied at the new prison if it is to meet its human rights obligations. Although the planning for the AMC has been thorough and measures up very well against the findings of the audit, it is not sufficient to acknowledge that the planning has taken place and leave it at that. The delivery of the benchmarks outlined in the report is the measure for the future and it is in that context that a follow-up audit to take place 12 months after the new prison opens will be welcomed by the government. I commend the response to the Assembly and I move:

That the Assembly takes note of the paper.

Debate (on motion by Dr Foskey) adjourned to the next sitting.

Education, Training and Young People—Standing Committee

Report 5—government response

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (4.22): For the information of members, I present the following paper.

Education, Training and Young People—Standing Committee—Report 5—Inquiry into the Eligible Voting Age—Government response, dated February 2008.

I move:

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