Page 58 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 10 February 2015

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MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Hanson, a supplementary question.

MR HANSON: Minister, can the government say with certainty that all asbestos has been removed from the property and, if not, when will it be?

MR CORBELL: The asbestos has not yet been removed from the property because a contract has not yet been awarded for that work. Assessment in relation to the successful tenderer is close to completion and the contract that will be awarded shortly is for the remediation of asbestos on the site, as well as other works.

Women—domestic violence

MS PORTER: My question, through you, Madam Speaker, is to the Minister for Women. Minister, the announcement of Rosie Batty as Australian of the Year has drawn national attention to the ongoing issue of domestic violence. What is the ACT government doing to address all forms of violence against women?

MS BERRY: I thank Ms Porter for asking this question. I know her ongoing interest in this very important issue. This is an issue that affects our entire community. We know that domestic, family and sexual violence is overwhelmingly violence that is committed by men against women. Some of us here will know people in our own lives who have been victims of domestic violence. We know that it is violence that happens to women in their own homes and we know that many children witness and are affected by violence.

To address this issue, the ACT government developed the “ACT prevention of violence against women and children strategy 2011-2017—our responsibility: ending violence against women and children”. The strategy provides overarching principles to guide violence prevention activities across government and non-government agencies. In 2014-15 the ACT government provided over $5.5 million towards crisis responses, accommodation and outreach services for women affected by violence. The strategy works towards helping our community understand the way in which violence affects women in all parts of life.

The Partners in Prevention function held in November 2012 worked with over 170 business leaders to consider how violence against women affects them as employers. As an employer, the ACT government introduced a leave entitlement of 20 days per annum for employees experiencing domestic or family violence.

To support women who have experienced violence, we fund a range of projects through the ACT women’s grants program that work to challenge attitudes to all forms of violence against women. These include the 2013 Summer of Respect campaign, run through the Women’s Centre for Health Matters, which worked with a local artist to depict examples of situations that may help men identify and speak up against sexual violence. The grants program helps the YWCA of Canberra develop the respect, communicate, choose respectful relationships project which works with young people in schools to develop the skills and attitudes that they need to have healthy, respectful relationships.

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