Page 1303 - Week 04 - Thursday, 10 April 2008

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Copy of email to Mr Corbell (Minister for Police and Emergency Services) and Mr Hargreaves (Minister for Housing), dated 14 March 2008.

Minister, why did you publicly mislead the ACT community about the problems involving criminal activity in government housing in Theodore?

MR HARGREAVES: Firstly, I didn’t. Secondly, Mr Pratt ought to get with the program. I have not been the minister for police for 18 months. Thirdly, he is talking about and has listed all of the things which apply to matters which sit within the purview of the police. I do not know the number of times I have had to put this particular position to Mrs Burke and now to Mr Pratt, because they seem to be either deliberately not listening or they are incapable of rational thought and of working this out.

Mr Pratt talks about behaviour which is illegal and matters which should have been before the police. I would like to know whether Mr Pratt passed this information on to the police and, if he did not, why he did not.

Mr Pratt: Yes.

MR HARGREAVES: If he has passed them on to the police, I congratulate him, because that is what should have happened. Let me ask the question: since when did Housing ACT accept responsibility for the elimination of criminal behaviour? These people opposite are quite happy to lay responsibility for criminal behaviour at the feet of Housing. They stand condemned.

Mr Pratt: Why did you say that on radio?

MR SPEAKER: Order, Mr Pratt!

MR HARGREAVES: I had not received information at that point, to the best of my knowledge. Had I received that information, I would have counselled the people to put the matter before the police.

It is also important for the chamber to know that Mr Pratt puts this information on the public record as fact. What has happened is that it is hearsay. These are alleged offences. How do we know, until they are investigated by the police, that they are actual offences? As it turns out, his colleague Mrs Burke, and no doubt his good self, have become quite expert in running scare tactics about illegal behaviour.

MR SPEAKER: Come to the subject matter of the question.

MR HARGREAVES: I am. We are talking about the issue of prostitution in public housing. These blokes here put on the public record that there was a person in public housing engaging in that, with kids under age. When it was investigated, it was found that that was a vexatious complaint by a neighbour, with absolutely no substance to it at all.

Mrs Burke: No, it is not.

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