Territory Stories

Parliamentary record : Part I debates (11 November 1986)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (11 November 1986)


Debates for 4th Assembly 1983 - 1987; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 4th Assembly 1983 - 1987




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Northern Territory Legislative Assembly

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Tuesday 11 November 1986 sniffing. We have agreed to meet all relevant ministers and departmental personnel in Alice Springs on 28 November. It is an effort across 4 states to come to terms with the problem. The sole reason I raise it in this particular discussion is because I want the opposition to cease its efforts to turn problems like this into cheap political point-scoring exercises. Mr Ede: You are doing that right now. Mr DALE: Let me illustrate how 1 of your colleagues does it. On 3 November this year, the member for MacDonnell went on the airwaves telling everybody that he did not know what to do about community-based care for victims of petrol sniffing. He wanted to ask a few friends on some committee down in Alice Springs about it but he had not really been able to come to terms with it. Nevertheless, he accused me of washing my hands of the problem because I put the onus back on the communities - an onus that the communities are willing and able to take on board. Let me read part of a letter to the member for MacDonnell from 2 medical officers at Kintore, a place that had enormous petrol sniffing problems: Petrol sniffing, which was previously a problem amongst children and teenagers, is presently in abeyance and has been so for over 3 months thanks to the constant vigilance and intervention by many community movers and the sensitive encouragement, support and guidance by the petrol sniffing team That is an initiative of this government. Mr Ede: It is a community initiative. Mr DALE: Listen to this; it will do you the world of good. Lastly, but importantly, is the incidence of psychiatric disease at Kintore. There are 3 adults who in other societies would certainly require regular hospitalisation if not institutionalisation. There are also 2 retarded teenagers, one of whom is severely handicapped by his illness. These people, however, playa role in their family structure and are superbly cared for by family, relatives and friends. The same can be said for the few orphans and other individuals who have lost their true family ties It can be achieved only in the setting of low stress lifestyle which the Pintubi have been able to achieve and maintain by being very much in control of their own community. That was signed on 27 August, 6 weeks before the member for MacDonnell went on air saying that he had given up on the problem and that he did not want to know about it. I know abput it because I have been to 23 communities in this Northern Territory since I became minister. I have asked questions about this problem in every community. Everyone of them is game to have self-motivation, self-management and self-esteem by looking after its own problems if these do-gooders in the opposition will give it the opportunity. APPROPRIATION BILL 1986-87 (Serial 218) Continued from 28 August 1986. Mr EDE (Stuart): Mr Speaker, I would like to start my discussion on the budget by referring to the Treasurer's speech. The first point that I would 802