Page 6124 - Week 14 - Thursday, 8 December 2011

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Mitchell—chemical fire

Mr Corbell (in reply to a supplementary question by Mr Smyth on Wednesday, 16 November 2011): Yes. All operators of the Emergency Alert system are trained on, and provided with a copy of, the user manual provided by the system manager in Victoria. I understand the system manager has been making further refinements to the system and is developing improved training material for the use of all jurisdictions.

Following our own experience of the system in the ACT at the chemical fire at Mitchell, the ACT Emergency Services Agency is reviewing internal procedures relating to the operation of the system, including quality assurance and authorisation processes. The ACT is also providing advice to the systems manager to address a number of specific issues that were identified during this event.

Workplace bullying

Mr Corbell (in reply to a supplementary question by Ms Bresnan on Tuesday, 25 October 2011): The ACT being a relatively small OHS jurisdiction, WorkSafe does not have inspectors dedicated to specific areas of interest. All inspectors can be called upon to investigate any health and safety matter. All inspectors are trained in investigation and inspection techniques and processes and are trained to address all aspects of the ACT's health and safety legislation.

Recognising the importance of bullying as an issue, WorkSafe ACT implemented a process in the first quarter of this calendar year which provides that once a bullying matter is allocated to an inspector for investigation, the inspector is required to seek advice from a team leader who oversights all bullying investigations at key points in the investigation to ensure that all appropriate matters are being considered.

In addition to this, complex bullying investigations are over sighted by senior managers including, on occasion, the Work Safety Commissioner.

The Work Safety Commissioner has assured me that he takes a particular interest in such matters and that, as a consequence, he is currently reviewing this procedure to determine whether any further improvements can be made.

Children and young people—care and protection

Ms Burch (in reply to a question by Ms Hunter on Thursday, 8 December 2011): The tender process for the Child, Youth and Family Services Program has been finalised. Successful respondents for the remaining service activities, including the providers of group service activities, have been notified. The Territory will commence pre-contract negotiations with these providers prior to 30 December 2011.

The Territory is currently working closely with the sector to manage all transitional arrangements prior to the full implementation of the new services on 1 March 2012. This work includes hosting several planning days with the sector and other key stakeholders, distribution of newsletters and regular meetings with individual organisations and the two main peak bodies (Families ACT and the Youth Coalition of the ACT).

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