Page 3170 - Week 10 - Thursday, 17 September 2015

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MARSS, of course, do a magnificent job in settling people into our community. An example of how they are not just providing support services but building strong communities is their sewing group where they have people from different nationalities coming together and learning how to sew. It is not just about learning a new skill; it is about these different nationalities sharing their stories, getting together, having a chat with each other and building that strong community. It is the MARSS sports club which organises the sporting carnival they hold each year during harmony week where they have the football and the basketball. I have offered to put myself up for a team on future harmony days and, Chief Minister, I may have mentioned your name, so be prepared for that.

I attended the national day for the Sierra Leone community and they have their own football club as well. They have been provided with new uniforms. They have not played in a league outside of their own community but they train twice a week and they play every weekend against each other. That is an example of these organisations working together.

Only a very small number of people have said they are concerned about whether the ACT has the capacity to support new people who will need a lot of help getting some assistance through escaping from the persecution and settling into a new community in Australia and whether we are supporting people in our own community who are disadvantaged. An example of where the ACT can do both and does both is the work the Speaker, Vicki Dunne, did yesterday in providing a drop-off point for the sharing the dignity campaign, which provides support to women who are leaving unsafe relationships with nothing, by providing tampons and sanitary items.

When people are concerned about the ACT having the capacity, I absolutely think our support services definitely have the capacity, and there is definitely the will in our community to make sure we support anybody who needs support and help in our community.

I want to reflect on a couple of things in ending this debate today on this motion. I thank everybody very much for their support, and I look forward to continuing to update the Assembly as we get more details about how this refugee program and settling new people into our community play out.

Motion agreed to.

Early childhood

MS BURCH (Brindabella—Minister for Education and Training, Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for Disability, Minister for Racing and Gaming and Minister for the Arts) (11.08): I move:

That this Assembly:

(1) notes the:

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