Page 3336 - Week 11 - Tuesday, 22 September 2015
In closing, I thank the ACTAS team: the paramedics, the intensive care paramedics, those that do the valuable work of the non-emergency patient transport, the officers who stock the medicine and treatment kit stores, and indeed all the positions across the service. My message to them is that they serve our community well and that I will stand with them to ensure that we continue to provide a nation-leading ambulance service and that the ACTAS blueprint for change is a key element of our success now and into the future.
I present the following paper:
ACT Ambulance Service Blueprint for Change Update—Ministerial statement, 22 September 2015.
That the Assembly take note of the paper.
MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (3.45): I am reminded of the saying that the more things change, the more they stay the same. If one goes through the statement the minister has just tabled, one can see that nothing has changed. The elements the minister outlines as part of the strategic reform agenda are the establishment of an oversight committee and specific project working groups. So we have committees. Change by committee, a working group and communique. One would think if you had a strategic reform agenda you would be able to outline the changes you were going to make and how they would be implemented—not a series of discussions.
Is it any wonder that in August this year the Canberra Times reported that ambulance staff were still waiting for promised reform. It said that low morale and frustration were getting worse, and in talking to my contacts in the ambulance service, many delegates and many members would like to take this further because they are not happy with the way the service is being run, the way the ESA is being run and the way the portfolio is being run.
It begs the question as to how long the Chief Minister will wait before he acts on this minister. If you were looking for leadership, if you were looking for a clear and unambiguous statement about how this reform will happen, you would be sorely disappointed. But I do not think any of us were expecting that. We had the debacle this morning of one statement being issued and then withdrawn and then a changed statement being tabled and then spoken to.
Let us go through the supposed changes the minister is so pleased to report on. Page 1, there is not a great deal there. On page 1 she says:
I understand and respect the desire of ACTAS officers to enable change without delay.
The officers want it to happen, but they are not sure management can deliver it. Remember, as is so often the case with this minister, there is no transparency. The