Page 3822 - Week 10 - Thursday, 27 August 2009

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On the issue of changing behaviour, we should ensure that people that are charged with drink driving understand the full implications and ramifications not just in terms of attracting a criminal charge but also that there is an opportunity for their behaviours to be exposed so that they will rehabilitate, they will not reoffend and they will not engage in that behaviour.

We do not have a precluded view as a government in relation to a range of issues around drink driving. My department—that is, TAMS—is currently giving serious consideration to related issues in relation to drink driving, issues going to whether or not the prescribed concentration of alcohol issues should be addressed by a reduction, most particularly for P-plate drivers, young drivers or drivers with some other characteristic. We are giving consideration to that.

There has been some consideration almost to a zero-tolerance approach to P-plate drivers and, say, taxi drivers and bus drivers—whether we should as a community accept there should be no drinking and that no concentration of alcohol should be tolerated in relation to particular classifications. These are issues that are being considered but at this stage no decisions have been taken.

MR SPEAKER: Mrs Dunne, a supplementary question?

MRS DUNNE: I think my supplementary is still to the attorney. Why has the government taken so long to address these issues when Magistrate Lalor brought to the government a means of streamlining the court processes and perhaps reducing by several hundred the number of people who need to appear before the courts?

MR CORBELL: As Mr Stanhope has just said, there is an interaction between the penalties regime available to the court and how it operates and the broader application of drink driving legislation in the territory. The government has taken a considered view that looks at all of those matters, rather than just looking at one element in isolation, and that is an appropriate way to formulate policy.

Schools—synthetic turf

MS HUNTER: My question is for the minister for education and concerns the use of synthetic turf around ACT schools. Minister, to what extent is synthetic turf being used in ACT government schools—and maybe the number of ACT government schools?

MR BARR: A number of ACT government schools utilise synthetic turf in a range of contexts. Some is used in and around playground equipment; some is utilised for playing surfaces of varying sizes. In the context of the new west Belconnen school, for example, the Kingsford Smith school has a full-sized synthetic turf playing field. There are other smaller playing surfaces available in a range of ACT public schools across the territory. The government, through the 2008 election campaign, had an election commitment that in this term of the Assembly we would seek to expand the number of artificial playing surfaces to an increased number of ACT public schools.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Hunter, a supplementary question?

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