Page 3005 - Week 10 - Tuesday, 15 September 2015

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Do I find it appropriate? Absolutely not. Am I enjoying standing here saying that this is ACT education and training at its finest? Absolutely not. Not since April have I thought that any part of this was acceptable in any way, shape or form, and I will continue to hold that absolute horror, dismay, disgust and disappointment in the principal and anyone else who saw that and thought that that was in any way acceptable.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, was the fact that a photo or photos were available part of the outcome of the inquiry?

MS BURCH: How this inquiry came to my attention is that there was a photo and complaints to the Human Rights Commission. That is how I became involved. I became involved too late because the structure had already been in place for 17 days. So, clearly, there are photos. There were photos identified within the investigation. People were aware of photos. I have seen one image and can I say that any image that I have seen published is not the same image that I have seen. So there are multiple photos, and I find that disturbing on any and all levels. I find it completely unacceptable on any and all levels. I struggle to understand how a principal of such experience came to this decision, but that is the fact. That is what it is, sadly.

Industrial relations—public holidays

MS PORTER: My question through you, Madam Speaker, is to the Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations. Minister, following the announcement that Easter Sunday will become a public holiday can you outline to the Assembly the benefits this will bring for workers in the ACT?

MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Ms Porter for her question and her interest in workers across the territory. The Australian labour market has undergone a period of significant change. For many workers, irregular hours and weekend work has become the norm. Sundays have increasingly become a working day for many employees, particularly in the retail, hospitality and transport sectors.

Members may be aware that I have been consulting with the community about public holidays and the treatment of Easter Sunday for several months. Many of the people that I have spoken with were surprised to learn that Easter Sunday is not already a public holiday. I suspect that the large number of people who work in or operate businesses that close on Sunday would be similarly surprised.

Historically, Good Friday, Easter Saturday and Easter Monday have been public holidays but Easter Sunday has not. This is because the origins of our current public holiday laws predate the liberalisation of Sunday trading when it was assumed that businesses would not be conducted on a Sunday. Unfortunately our industrial relations laws have not kept up with our changing work patterns.

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