Page 410 - Week 02 - Tuesday, 12 February 2013

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Mrs Dunne interjecting—

MS GALLAGHER: That is the position you ended up having. You did change your position. I know you changed it. You did support it and then you did not support it. We strongly support the belief that we should rehabilitate and care for our prisoners in the ACT. They are our people. They deserve rehabilitation and education, and that comes at a cost because of the size of our jurisdiction. We strongly believe it. We will continue to believe it and we will continue to invest in those people. Our hope is that they come in and they do not come back, but when they do we will continue to invest in them. Because they are in Canberra their families can come and visit them. Do not underestimate the dislocation to a family when you have to take your kids to Sydney to visit your husband because he is in jail.

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (4.37): Mr Assistant Speaker Doszpot, I thank you for bringing forward this matter of public importance today. The performance of the ACT in the Productivity Commission report is a matter of some concern to the Canberra Liberals, and I will highlight some of the issues. In doing so it may appear to be somewhat repetitive, because these are issues that I have highlighted in the past and they have not gone away.

From the outset I want to debunk the whole idea put forward by the Chief Minister that if we criticise government performance we are talking down public servants. What we are doing here today, and what we do regularly, is highlighting the failure of public service—the failure of the public service to provide the services that they set out to do for the people of the ACT. And by highlighting this, by pointing to figures in the ROGS and saying, “There are failures here,” we are not talking down public servants. We are—

Ms Gallagher: I did not say that.

MRS DUNNE: They are exactly the words you used. You said the Canberra Liberals are talking down public servants. We do not. We are highlighting the failure of service provision by this government.

On 31 January this year the Chief Minister issued a press release welcoming the release of the Productivity Commission’s report on government services for 2013. She said:

… the ACT leads the country in areas of high quality outcomes from government services.

But this media release is little more than spin. It is trawling through to find the good bits, the little bits, the little flecks of gold, to highlight them so that you can deflect the underlying programs.

The government talked about the NAPLAN results, but it did not acknowledge the contributions made by the intelligence of students or the efforts put in by students and

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