Page 5819 - Week 14 - Wednesday, 7 December 2011

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MR SPEAKER: Members, let us take the points of order on the standing orders. We do not need running commentary on other members in this place. That applies to both sides of the chamber. My patience is being tested on this. Mr Barr, you have one minute and 10 seconds remaining to answer Mr Smyth’s question.

MR BARR: Thank you, Mr Speaker. As I was observing, on this day when we have—

MR SPEAKER: The question, Mr Barr.

MR BARR: an excellent report card on the territory’s economy, the information that is available in terms of state final demand for the most recent quarter shows in trend terms a 0.1 per cent decline, but in seasonally adjusted terms—so taking account of those seasonal factors, as is standard in presenting this particular data—it shows growth in the territory economy. When you look at the drivers of that growth—private consumption and public investment—when you look across the year, when you look at the overall performance of the ACT economy and when you look at Standard & Poor’s outlook for the territory economy, it all remains very positive. It would only be Brendan Smyth, the most negative man in territory politics, who would try and use today to talk down the territory economy.

Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders—young people centre

MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the Minister for Community Services. Minister, on 21 November, in the annual reports hearings before the Standing Committee on Education, Training and Youth Affairs, Ms Hunter asked you a question about the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people centre. She wanted to know how many adjoining rooms were used in the past year and how many of the residents using those adjoining rooms were Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people or whether they were non-Indigenous young people. In reference to the figures, you responded:

Qualitative around the quantitative. We can say we used it once, or two or three times, whatever number of times it is. But if people chose not to have it opened, how do we account for that?

Minister, I seek your clarification. Were you talking about qualitative or quantitative information?

MS BURCH: I do thank Mr Doszpot for questions like that. There was a question from Ms Hunter about the number of times those rooms that have access between rooms were used. What I made mention of was that I could come back with information about the number of times they were used. But I also pointed that there would be times when they would be offered and the young people would not have an interest in sharing the room. What I meant by that qualitative data was the conversation with the young person where we asked them do they want to have access to the person in the next room. That conversation is a very important decision in determining whether that room is accessed or not.

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