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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 11 Hansard (Thursday, 21 October 2010) . . Page.. 4835 ..

I also take the opportunity to thank all of the builders, project managers, principals, teachers, parents, school boards and parents and citizens councils who have made this record investment in the ACT schooling infrastructure possible. It is a fantastic achievement for our territory. I hope that all members can rise above the politics of the education debate to join with me in congratulating all of those school communities on their efforts to achieve, and to work with government to achieve, fantastic outcomes in each and every ACT school. It is a fantastic achievement for education in the Australian Capital Territory.

Homelessness—street to home program

Statement by minister

MS BURCH (Brindabella—Minister for Disability, Housing and Community Services, Minister for Children and Young People, Minister for Ageing, Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Minister for Women): I seek leave to make a statement on the street to home initiative.

Leave not granted.

Standing and temporary orders—suspension

MR HARGREAVES (Brindabella) (10.44): I move:

That so much of the standing and temporary orders be suspended as would prevent Ms Burch (Minister for Children and Young People) from making a statement concerning the Street to Home Program.

We have been through this already this week. In reference to a ministerial statement, it was described by those opposite—I think it might have been Mrs Dunne who said it—that a convention exists. There is not a convention actually; it is an agreement which was struck earlier on in this particular Assembly. I would argue that if it is an accepted practice at the conclusion of one Assembly and it goes into the next then it becomes a convention. But it is still an agreement, and that agreement has been honoured in the most part or penalties have been paid. But this is not a ministerial statement, Mr Speaker. It is a statement by a minister by leave of this chamber.

Ms Burch has been criticised a number of times by those opposite—there seems to be some sort of a campaign on. I would ask them not to do this, not to use parliamentary process just to continue this particular program of victimisation of Ms Burch. They should just leave it alone. There is no reason why this chamber cannot grant Ms Burch leave to make this statement. I would ask people to give Ms Burch the same courtesy as they extended to the other minister earlier on this week.

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (10.46): The Liberal opposition has formed the view—it is consistently our view—that leave will not be given for ministerial statements or statements by ministers unless the appropriate members of the opposition are given notice of the content. It was remiss of me; I was in conversation with Mr Doszpot when Mr Barr stood to seek leave and I actually missed it, because I would have

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