Territory Stories

Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 17 May 1995



Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 17 May 1995

Other title

Parliamentary Record 10


Debates for 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





Publisher name

Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

Place of publication


File type



Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

Copyright owner

Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



Parent handle


Citation address


Page content

DEBATES - Wednesday 17 May 1995 Mr EDE: Yes, very convenient. It was all organised and the minister chickened out at the last moment. He did not want the police to tell him what they thought of him. Mr Poole interjecting. Mr EDE: Yes, and you can send it around to all of the police, because I certainly will. I told them that I would raise it and that I would echo their disgust about this situation and advise the Assembly. This situation would not be permitted anywhere else. If the minister thinks it is fine, let him take up my challenge to invite the 7.30 Report to go in there at a time when it is empty and film it, and the let us see what the people of the Northern Territory think of it. Mr POOLE (Correctional Services): Mr Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition has put an absolutely nonsensical proposition to this Assembly tonight in relation to juvenile justice facilities in Alice Springs. First, I will deal with the current situation in Alice Springs which is, as he well knows, that we closed Giles House a few years ago. The reason was that the facility had an average occupancy of 2.1 offenders in 1990 and 2.7 in 1991. That is fewer than 3 children in the facility. The actual situation in the detention facilities of the whole of the Northern Territory at the moment is that, up to a few days ago, we had 2 central Australians in the detention facilities in the Northern Territory. One was released recently, and was the subject of the appeal that the member for Barkly mentioned. The other, I understand, is a person from Yuendumu. Therefore, maintaining a facility in Alice Springs would not fix the problem of distance and visitation or anything of that kind. Before we closed the Giles House facility, we went through the visitation details and the numbers of people who went to see the children in the detention centre. The fact is that they never had visitors. Some of them were in over the Christmas period but the majority had no visitors at all. If my memory is correct, at one Christmas 4 or 5 years ago, there were 5 or 6 ... Mr Bell: Thus, you ensure that it is utterly impossible by moving them to Darwin. Mr POOLE: I am not saying that. I am saying that it is completely impractical to run a detention centre in Alice Springs. We have 33 staff in the juvenile centres at Wildman River and Darwin, and it is ... Mr Bell: We inherited Giles House from the Commonwealth in 1978, and this government closed the joint. Mr POOLE: It is a pity you did not stand up and say something in this debate. Mr Bell: Previous speakers said enough. Mr POOLE: You want to contribute by way of inteijection. Why didnt you get to your feet when you had the opportunity instead of sitting there with your mouth closed? Mr Bell inteijecting