Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 14 Hansard (Wednesday, 29 November 2017) . . Page.. 5311 ..
To all my constituents and the people that I work with out in voter land, I thank them for their support and the fact that they do not go away; they keep pestering me about issues and they keep bringing things to me and my colleagues for our attention. I am flattered that after 16 years they do not tire of asking me to do things for them.
I do want to reflect a little. I think I caused a bit of a problem this morning by chiding Mr Steel for his quips about a “cool little capital”. Quite frankly, most of my constituents cannot afford to be cool. They are struggling with the cost of housing, the cost of electricity, the cost of rising rates and access to health care—which has improved in the electorate, but that has been not because of this government but because of the activities of private individuals, which means we now have much better primary health care because of the work of individuals and community groups to provide that service. Although we are—Mr Hanson used the word “blessed”—a blessed few, we are privileged and we are highly paid, even by ACT standards, we need to reflect on what it is like for the people who pay our wages and who are not as highly paid as we are. I think that we need to be real when it comes to their aspirations and to recognise where they are.
On that note, Madam Speaker, I would like to wish everyone the warmest greetings for the Christmas season. Keep safe. I hope that you have the opportunity to be with your family and your loved ones; and, for those who do not have family and loved ones, that they are able to navigate this time in a way that brings them fulfilment.
Kurrajong electorate—government achievements
MS STEPHEN-SMITH (Kurrajong—Minister for Community Services and Social Inclusion, Minister for Disability, Children and Youth, Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs, Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations) (6.35): It has truly been a privilege to serve as a member for Kurrajong—the heart of Canberra—over the past year. This year, in my objective opinion, central Canberra has continued to be a great place to live, and we are making it even better.
I would particularly like to highlight some improvements over the past year that have made it easier and safer to get around and be active across my electorate. There is a new bus station at Dickson and access to the flexible bus service for seniors and people with mobility issues in the inner north—something I actively campaigned on and lobbied for in 2016.
There are new natural play spaces at Telopea Park in Barton and at the Finn Street park in O’Connor, on which I have had great feedback from parents. Haig Park in Braddon is safer and more accessible, with wider paths, better lighting and new furniture, and is now an active place as the evenings get warmer, rather than somewhere to scurry across or skirt around.
Kingston has new raised pedestrian crossings and wider footpaths—a great example of the government, the residents’ group and Kingston traders working together on a