Page 1928 - Week 06 - Thursday, 9 June 2016

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Housing ACT—safety compliance

MS LAWDER: Madam Speaker, my question is to the minister for housing. In March this year, a public housing tenant in Braddon questioned whether their public housing unit, and the unit complex as a whole, complied with fire safety requirements. The constituent was very concerned for their safety and for that of other tenants and, in particular, was concerned that the doors connecting the units to the basement car park, and the front doors of their units, might not be fire safety doors. Minister, do all public housing properties in the ACT comply with current fire safety requirements, and when was an audit of this last conducted?

MS BERRY: Regarding the apartments in Braddon, Housing ACT have been working very closely with those residents to make sure they are as safe as possible. For Housing ACT, the first priority is for those tenants to be as safe as possible and for all Housing ACT tenants to remain as safe as possible. I am not advised of any other public housing in the ACT that does not meet the requirements. In fact, the legislation introduced by Mick Gentleman yesterday will address some of those other issues for housing more generally across the ACT in making sure they comply with building requirements. That will mean more inspections and if there are Housing ACT houses that are being built by builders across the ACT, they will fall into that as well, and the inspections will be implemented under that regime.

Mr Coe: A point of order.

MS BERRY: As far as whether Housing ACT has conducted—

MADAM SPEAKER: A point of order. Sit down please, Ms Berry. Stop the clock, please. On the point of order, Mr Coe.

Mr Coe: The point of order relates to relevance. The question Ms Lawder asked was do all housing properties in the ACT comply with current fire safety requirements and when was the last audit conducted. I ask that the minister come to those points.

MADAM SPEAKER: On the point of order, I did hear Ms Berry say that she did not think there were problems in any other housing developments, but I did not hear anything in relation to an audit. I remind Ms Berry of the provisions of the standing orders and ask her to be directly relevant to the question.

MS BERRY: Thank you, Madam Speaker. As I said, I have not been advised that any residences of Housing ACT do not comply with those fire safety regulations. I am not aware of any concerns that have been raised with me about that. I will get some advice about whether an audit has been conducted and will bring some advice back to the Assembly.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Minister, what, if anything, has Housing ACT done to ensure that all public housing properties, new and old, in the ACT comply with fire safety requirements?

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