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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 13 February 2018) . . Page.. 55 ..

MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Hanson, your colleague has asked a question. I will call the minister to answer.

MS BERRY: School principals and school communities work to ensure the best outcomes for students in their schools, as I have explained and tried to explain—and certainly it is the case with children that I know in my local neighbourhood—on when is the appropriate time to use a device within a school and how it can be appropriately used to improve academic outcomes for students in schools.

Prohibition does not work. Isolating young people from a device that plays such an important part in their lives is not the solution. The solution is ensuring that these devices, iPhones, which every single one of us has, are used appropriately in the schools. Adults actually have a very important role to play in ensuring that these devices are used appropriately and that what they are used for is appropriate, and setting a very good example for young people in our community as well.

National Multicultural Festival—consultation

MRS KIKKERT: My question is to the Minister for Multicultural Affairs. Minister, in a media release on 30 August last year, you spoke of, and I quote, “the ACT government’s commitment to strengthen community consultation”. Which community organisations did the ACT government consult with before deciding on a blanket ban on community organisations selling alcoholic beverages at this year’s Multicultural Festival?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Mrs Kikkert for her question. Each year festival organisers seek feedback from all stakeholders. That includes stallholders, festival goers and ACT government agencies that participate in helping to organise and run the festival.

The festival organisers have a reference group or a steering committee—I cannot remember the exact title of it—that includes the showcase organisers from a range of communities. People would be aware that there are a number of showcases—at least half a dozen showcases; I cannot give the exact number off the top of my head—organised by different cultural communities. Those showcase organisers are consulted by the festival organising group in aspects of the organisation of the festival.

So it is an ongoing consultation process following each festival and in the lead-up to each festival with a range of community organisations. I can take on notice the exact detail of who those are.

MRS KIKKERT: Minister, why did you not you consult community organisations that were selling alcohol at the 2017 Multicultural Festival before making a decision which has robbed many of them of a large part of their income?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: As I said, community organisations are consulted about organisation of the festival in an ongoing way, and I have certainly committed that following this festival we will actively seek feedback, as the festival organisers do

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