Page 1637 - Week 06 - Tuesday, 7 May 2013
embarking on, which I think the article was about. Many of us here understand that very vulnerable, complex families have interactions with education, with community services, with justice and health and probably with every agency of government. What we have found is that in many ways with the silos of government—and it is just an artefact of what governments are: they have silos of function—for those very complex families it is—
Mr Hanson: Madam Speaker—
MADAM SPEAKER: Point of order, Mr Hanson?
Mr Hanson: Yes, please. The question was quite specific in that it was not about the broad project; it was asking how many individuals the government would spend more than a million dollars on. If the minister is unable to answer that in response to the question, maybe she could answer that on notice—but certainly be directed to be relevant in terms of the financial aspect in terms of how many families or individuals have a million dollars spent on them.
MADAM SPEAKER: That is correct, Ms Burch. That was the thrust of the question, and the standing orders require you to be directly relevant.
MS BURCH: I said that I did not have that detail in front of me. I looked across the chamber and more or less implied that I am happy to go to the detail of the project. I am quite happy to leave it there and bring that detail back if there is no interest in the project.
MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mrs Jones.
MRS JONES: Minister, how much of this million-dollar price tag is a result of running a somewhat fragmented social services system, and what is being done?
MS BURCH: Again, I do not have that detail in front of me. I will bring back what I can. But suffice it to say, often what we read in publications is somewhat of a narrative to a story and not the detail of the case-by-case individuals or families.
But if I can go back to explaining the project that we are embarking on, these complicated vulnerable families have interacted across a number of agencies, and we have determined that it probably is far better for them and for us as a sector, not only as a government but the community sector as well, to see how we can do better with them. We embarked on a project about 12 or 18 months ago called working with families, and we got quite down into the detail of a journey of a family or an individual through the different service systems, both with government and non-government agencies.
From that, we determined this next phase of the project, which was, in simple terms, to apply a single caseworker and for them to have some delegation to work across government agencies and community services so that the family are really having that interaction with one key leader, rather than going into the draw and getting a caseworker, going into the next service and getting the next caseworker. What we have done is gone out to a number of families and asked for them to volunteer to be