Territory Stories

Parliamentary record : Part I debates (27 February 1990)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (27 February 1990)


Debates for 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990




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 27 February 1990 fortnight, but no salary. That was all she received. I have been advised that, in one regional office, the jobs of salaries and recruitment are handled by the same officer. Those are 2 very large tasks and, obviously, are overstressing this staff member to the extent that he is unable to cope. There have been delays in the approval by the department of auxiliary staff. The schools are entitled to the staff and the department has to do the paperwork and have the person placed on the payroll. This is taking up to 6 weeks. As a result, many people are employed for that time without receiving any pay. I would like to know why it takes 6 weeks. Yuendumuis one example where this is happening. I spoke to the Assembly about this at the same time last year and it is happening allover again. I would ask the minister to advise what he is doing to monitor this problem so that we do not have to raise this matter every year. Last year,assistant teachers in Arnhem Land were not being paid. This year, the same problem is occurring again. The department needs to get itself organised quickly at the beginning of the year. I have been advised of 3 incidents where teachers recruited from interstate to work in Alice Springs have been told a couple of days before school started that they had to arrive for work. They have had to rush to the Northern Territory without any preparation. When they get here, there is no accommodation for them or their families. They end up having' to go into hotels or motels. They have to try to find means of placing their pets. This causes considerable stress to the families and extra costs. " In one example, the day after rushing to Alice Springs to start work, one teacher was immediately re-posted to Borroloola. Welcome to the Territory! Is it any wonder that we have problems relating to a high turnover of teachers. I am told that the Housing Commission in Alice Springs has quite a substant i a 1 number of houses whi ch have only a small amount of ma i ntenance work to be done on them to bring them back into service. There is suspicion that the reason that these are unavailable is to prop up the private market. What is ,the, situation? I am told continually of houses which require only the replacement of a couple of doorknobs or lbuvres.l cannot understand why the Department of Education cannot do a deal with the Housing Commission at the beginning of the year to have a few of these houses brought up to a standard where families could use them for a couple of weeks or months while permanent arrangements are being made for them. At least, they could then have their pets with them, and they would have their belongings in one place instead of scattered all over the Territory, as has happened in some instances. In my electorate, Nyirripi school is so overcrowded that, to teach some children, the teachers have to use their private homes. The department has promised for months to move a temporary building from Mallapunyah Springs. In' fact, we are now 'into the second year of this problem. Mr Hatton: Did you fix up the location of the health centre at Mount Allan? Mr EDE: It is there. I have written you a letter about that. Mr Hatton: I have not received your letter yet. Mr EDE: Wait until you get it. You will need to make representations to your colleague over there. We have half the money from the ADC sitting 8869