Page 1739 - Week 06 - Thursday, 30 July 2020

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Minister may I remind you. You are robbing from this girl … How? By robbing time away from her to see her mother. The judge saw that they should see each other. But the government have taken their pride and have not looked at the best interest of the child.

Now the government has blocked the mother from emailing them. She cannot contact them for updates to see her daughter. Minister, why is your government blocking a mother from seeing her daughter and, as a result, stopping the daughter from seeing her mother when she has said that she wants to?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: Obviously I am not going to comment on the details of an individual child and youth protection matter, but I can inform the Assembly that there are a number of errors of fact in Mrs Kikkert’s assertion.

MRS KIKKERT: No error. Ask the mum. Minister, why is the government going against a court order where a judge approved that a reunion be made between the mother and the daughter?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: My understanding is that the Community Services Directorate is acting in accordance with the court order.

Mrs Kikkert: Rubbish.

MADAM SPEAKER: Mrs Kikkert, please.

MS LAWDER: Minister, will you and your directorate reach out to the mother today to organise for the right of both mother and daughter to see each other?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: Again, I am not going to comment on the details of an individual matter.

Public land—bike tracks

MR PARTON: My question is to the Minister for Planning and Land Management. Minister, I refer to the story in the RiotACT yesterday about the local kids who have made a bike track in Duffy Street, Ainslie, during the COVID-19 pandemic as a form of local recreation and fun. Minister, what advice have you received from your directorate about the plans to knock down the mounds and the track that these local kids have put a considerable amount of time and effort into constructing?


MR STEEL: I will take the question on behalf of the government, as the responsible minister for public unleased land and the PUL Act in the ACT. The ACT government recognises that a number of pump tracks have been built by local children, possibly because the rain has softened up the earth and enabled these mounds to be built creatively, and no doubt with a lot of innovation. We certainly recognise that more children are out there riding in our community, and that is fantastic to see.

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