Page 4899 - Week 13 - Tuesday, 27 November 2018

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Finally, the committee commented on the fact that no other means are provided in the Emergencies Act for the Assembly to end a state of emergency or otherwise bring the appointment of the emergency controller to an end. A state of emergency or the appointment of an emergency controller is a significant decision for government to make. It would only be made in response to a significant threat to the ACT community by an emergency event.

The circumstances where a state of emergency or appointment of an emergency controller might need to be ended prior to or during an actual or imminent event is highly unlikely. The premature termination of either a state of emergency or an emergency controller’s appointment would impede the task of managing a time-critical situation that presents a significant danger to the health or safety of people, animals or property or the environment or that presents a significant risk to the disruption of essential services within the territory.

As the minister responsible for the Emergencies Act and our emergency personnel and police officers who put their lives on the line to protect the ACT community, I feel that such a proposal would unnecessarily jeopardise and put the community at risk at a time where clear and effective leadership and control are needed.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.

Bill agreed to.

Disability Services Amendment Bill 2018

Debate resumed from 30 October 2018, on motion by Ms Stephen-Smith:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MS LEE (Kurrajong) (6.12): This bill is an important method of ensuring the powers of the ACT Official Visitor are up to date with the ever-changing landscape of disability service provision in the ACT. As the ACT has now transitioned to the NDIS, the powers and functions of the Official Visitor must be updated to ensure that their purpose is still served. The bill does this with three central amendments.

First, it changes the definition of “visitable place”. This is necessary because the act defined “visitable place” as aged-care facilities providing services for a person with a disability aged less than 65. However, the implication of this definition was that a facility with a resident with a disability aged over 65 could not be visited. The bill clarifies the intent for these facilities to remain visitable regardless of the age of the resident with a disability.

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