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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 07 Hansard (Wednesday, 2 August 2017) . . Page.. 2369 ..

MRS JONES: Minister, how many of these assaults on young people were committed by detainees 18 years and older?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I will take the question on notice.

MRS KIKKERT: In the past two years how many detainees have been transferred to adult corrections after they assaulted another young person at Bimberi or because they were determined to pose that threat?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Mrs Kikkert for her supplementary question. I gave quite a detailed answer to the Leader of the Opposition some time ago about the circumstances under which young people are transferred to AMC. I will take the detail of that question on notice but there are a range of matters that need to be taken into account in considering whether or not a young person should be transferred to AMC.

Budget—community legal centres

MR STEEL: My question is to the Attorney-General. Can the minister give some detail about which organisations will receive funding through the community legal centres package in the 2017-18 budget?

MR RAMSAY: I thank Mr Steel for his question. This budget shows, indeed, our government’s commitment to a justice system that is accessible, that is timely and that is transparent. Early this year I met with a number of our CLCs and I heard how the uncertainty of their funding was impacting on the services they provide. For example, Canberra Community Law warned that with the planned commonwealth cuts up to 200 people could go without important legal help. Thankfully the commonwealth reversed its policy, but in reversing its cuts the commonwealth provided funds only for specific programs and it did not provide funds for core funding for existing services. That meant that for core services funding remained uncertain.

That uncertainty has real impacts, which I heard about in the meeting with the CLCs. The Women’s Legal Centre explained how the uncertainty of ongoing funding makes it difficult to hire and retain lawyers as short-term funding means short-term employment. Street Law pointed out that with a history of year-to-year funding it has only ever been able to plan services for people on the basis of having help to the end of the year.

The $2.4 million in funding that was provided in this budget will be supporting our CLCs to give them certainty. This budget will provide four years of funding for Canberra Community Law, four years of funding for Street Law and four years of funding for the Women’s Legal Centre. We will be providing two years of funding to the Environmental Defenders Office. This budget directly responds to the concerns that our CLCs have had about being able to serve this community well.

MR STEEL: What sorts of new programs for vulnerable people will be available to the community with this funding?

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