Page 795 - Week 02 - Thursday, 10 March 2011

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

I do take Mrs Dunne’s point that not every job is equally attractive to both genders; I do not think that anyone would for a minute suggest that both genders were the same. But if we look at things from a merit-based point of view, I think it is possible for all of us to have our rightful dues.

I would like to say thank you to Ms Hunter and everyone else for bringing up this important matter, and may we have many more International Women’s Days.

MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Mr Hargreaves): The discussion is concluded.


Motion by Ms Burch proposed:

That the Assembly do now adjourn.

World Plumbing Day

MR BARR (Molonglo—Minister for Education and Training, Minister for Planning, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Recreation and Minister for Gaming and Racing) (5.04): I would like to bring to the Assembly’s attention a very important but curiously overlooked day on our calendar.

Tomorrow, 11 March, is World Plumbing Day and it is a day to ponder the advantages that plumbing brings to our lives. I understand that this is not a glamorous topic and that most of us only contemplate the joys of plumbing when we somehow feel inconvenienced by it—when the water is taking too long to heat up on a brisk Canberra morning or when one of the many fixtures we have in our homes and workplaces is defying us by not working properly. We may even feel put out by the necessary outages for maintenance of the infrastructure that delivers our water supply.

So why is World Plumbing Day cause for celebration? Why shouldn’t we take plumbing for granted and expect hot and cold running water to be available whenever and wherever we need it?

We should have an expectation that our right to clean water will be protected and that we will have high quality services, but we should not take our conditions for granted. Whilst we in the ACT enjoy this situation in our daily lives and the protection provided by excellent standards of water quality, utilities and plumbing installations, over 1.2 billion people, or more than one-sixth of the global population, do not have access to any clean water.

As the United Nations reports, 2.6 billion people, and almost half the population in developing regions, do not have access to basic sanitation. And, sadly, this number is growing, not declining. In many regions where water and basic sanitation are available, the security of supply is threatened by conflict, pollution and siphoning by business operations. Water may be located a considerable distance from people’s homes, meaning that hours of every day that could be spent on education and more productive activities are taken up with the sourcing of water for drinking, irrigation,

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video