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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 11 Hansard (Wednesday, 24 October 2018) . . Page.. 4214 ..

children and their families with a focus on early childhood, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and children. This work is driven by a clear recognition that, despite considerable spending on human services, many families still experience poor outcomes. This is because much of our spending is too often targeted at the crisis end of the system where services have less of an impact on changing people’s life trajectories.

We will improve this by increasing the capacity across the system to provide early support so that children and families can get the help that they need before issues, including the effects of domestic and family violence, become entrenched. The 10-year plan will shift government and non-government services to a commissioning for outcomes environment. This includes developing integrated services and systems.

The approach recognises that families do not experience their lives, including the impacts and problems of domestic and family violence, in silos. So responses and supports should not be provided through service silos either. Instead, we know that we need to work holistically with families to support their wellbeing rather than responding to isolated issues.

The early support initiative will ensure that the human services system is better equipped to work with families earlier, to respond to negative impacts earlier, and in the longer term reduce the impact and transmission of intergenerational disadvantage and improve whole-of-life outcomes. Of course, all of this will depend on better data, as both Mrs Kikkert’s motion and Ms Berry’s amendment reflect.

Ms Berry has spoken in some detail about the steps underway to improve the collection and use of data, and this will be critical in understanding the impacts of changes that are made, the outcomes that our service system is delivering and how we can improve services over the long term, and measure those changes.

Finally, I would like to acknowledge the significant effort of people working in the family violence, child protection and service sector every day, the people who are at the front-line of our response to the significant social problem of family and domestic violence. I would also like to thank the members of the Domestic Violence Prevention Council for pulling together the extraordinary meeting.

I thank everyone who attended and participated, particularly the young woman who sat at the table that I was on as part of the round tables. She shared her own experience of the impacts of domestic and family violence on her life as a child in the system whose voice had not been adequately heard. I commend Ms Berry’s amendment to the Assembly.

MRS KIKKERT (Ginninderra) (5.03): I thank those who have spoken to this motion and its intent. I am grateful for the opportunity to move it. I would be dishonest if I did not say that I was disappointed in this government’s unwillingness to make a firm commitment today to implement recommendation 5 from the DVPC’s report. I understand that recommendations need to be considered and responded to thoughtfully. At the same time, the ACT government has had this report for nearly two months already.

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