It is pleasing to see that the election commitment by Labor, the Greens and Senator David Pocock, to restore to the ACT and the Northern Territory the right to legislate for euthanasia may be actioned in the first sitting of the new Parliament.
Member for Canberra, Alicia Payne is reported in The Canberra Times as saying that the democratic rights of a person in Canberra are the same as those of a person in Queanbeyan. Alicia could, of course, have said that the democratic rights of a person in Canberra are no different than those of any other Australian, no matter where they live.
The reason she didn't say that is, of course, because it isn't true.
The peoples of Norfolk Island, Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, all of which, like the ACT, are Australian territories, are also subject to the prohibition to legislate on euthanasia. But, unlike the ACT and the Northern Territory, they have no right to legislate on anything at all.
I do hope that the Bill which Alicia is proposing to introduce will restore rights to all territories and not just some. If not, just think how hypocritical that would be.
Senator David Pocock listened and made territory rights one of his key policy commitments and an open, discussable issue during his election campaign.
For 25 years the main parties dragged their feet federally on reversing the injustice meted out to territorians in the increasingly unwanted 1997 Andrews Bill, including at election times.
They also conveniently hid behind the hurdles of "conscience" votes despite the matter of allowing two legislatures to consider and debate what they wish being a purely secular one.
Now two Labor MPs are hopping forwards eagerly to get rid of the legislation ("Rights fix 'coming soon'", canberratimes.com.au, July 5). What a difference a local and vocal independent senator is making.
On June 30 Coroner Morrison handed down his findings into the death of our son, Dean Brice. The coroner recommended that the ACT government consider the NSW Involuntary Drug and Alcohol Treatment (IDAT) Program, which mandates rehabilitation for patients who suffer a co-morbid health condition.
In response, the Attorney-General commented on page 4 in The Canberra Times of July 2 that the findings "invites reflection". We believe the time has come for action, not reflection. The ACT government has known about substance use comorbidities for many years and the Productivity Commission Inquiry Report into Mental Health in Australia states "insufficient progress has been made and problems remain".
Our "lived experience" acknowledges this outcome because holistic treatment for people with substance use comorbidities did not exist in 2020 for Dean, and it still does not exist in the ACT.
The coroner's case for the ACT government to consider the NSW IDAT Program is one part of the 'holistic' model of care that should be available for people suffering substance use comorbidities.
The other part the ACT government should include in its model of care and action is treatment approaches, such as motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioural therapy, relapse prevention techniques, pharmacotherapy, mindfulness training, contingency management and psychosocial and self-help groups.
The availability and accessibility of holistic treatment including mandated therapies would have given us hope for Dean, because families need hope ... something is better than nothing.
We thank Coroner Morrison for following up this issue with the Attorney-General.
While completely agreeing with Jo Clay ("Time to end ACT's $40m racing subsidy", canberratimes.com.au, June 27) I would go one step further. The racecourse should be relocated elsewhere. The land currently occupied by Thoroughbred Park and by the Yowani Golf Club should be given back to the community.
Considering the closeness of these areas to the Dickson Precinct, to Light Rail and with it to Civic, they offer a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for large-scale, socially inclusive, community-building, affordable, ecologically sensitive and energy efficient urban "infill" development.
And without destroying critically endangered ecological communities and without eroding community space, as it is happening with the YWCA development in Ainslie.
Developing Thoroughbred Park and Yowani Golf Club would also offer the chance to practice proper, genuine, design competition-driven consultation of a masterplan, in contrast to the tick-a-box consultations associated with the piecemeal, single-solution developments characterising the current infill strategy.
Well the blame game didn't take long. Now Richard Marles is putting the faults on the patrol boats given to some of the island nations (Solomon Islands among them) down to the previous government.
Why didn't Peter Dutton personally inspect each craft prior to delivery?
No doubt the WA Premier was chuffed the building of these craft was put in the capable hands of some one from WA; a bit of egg on the face now Mr Premier?
I wonder if the Chinese will now offer fault-free craft to replace the dodgy ones provided by the boat builder from Western Australia to curry more favour with the Islanders?
I'm tempted to ignore Christopher Smith's critique of The Canberra Times' editorial on American gun rights and abortion (Letters, July 5), but I can't let his claim that America defeated fascism and the communists with "no help from you and yours" go unchallenged.
I'll let others argue the accuracy of his assertion that Americans defeated the communists, but like many others in Australia I had relatives who fought and died in WWII - and who were fighting well before America stopped "sitting it out".
And his labelling of Biden as an "arch-drongo" was far more "undergraduate" than any editorialising by The Canberra Times, as was his unnecessary attack on Biden's son.
I think he'll also find America was "humming" pretty well in tune under Obama, allowing Trump to ride on his economic coat tails.
I refer to the letter from Christopher Smith ("Editorial was wrong", Letters, July 5). On reading that letter I couldn't help but laugh, in a non-humorous way.
Mr Smith asked "Who's writing your juvenile editorials these days?". I hoped he was being rhetorical, but the tenor of his letter suggested not. I don't know how Mr Smith can, with a straight face, advocate some of the absurd propositions he did. Juvenile? Certainly not the editor.
Christopher Smith (Letters, July 5) doesn't believe Clarence Thomas's appointment was controversial. He is obviously either ignorant or deliberately playing fast and loose with the facts. Do the words "Anita Hill" and "serial sexual harassment" ring any bells?
Thomas's appointment was one of the most controversial in US history and it is extremely unlikely he would have fallen across the line in a post-"me too" world.
For him, of all people, to be passing judgement over what control women have over their own reproductive function absolutely beggars belief.
Listening to our own Nick Kyrgios deftly handling a clutch of media wanting to stoke the post-match embers back into flame showed just how skilful he has become off the court.
His critics say his "on court" conduct is less than ideal. What is ideal? Is it wearing whites, noisily huffing and puffing, being an emotionless automaton? Is it being unable to play because the accumulated stress just gets to be too much to cope with?
For better or worse each of us deals with stress in our own way.
Maybe our Nick can train himself to refine his inevitable outbursts, so that words and phrases of disgust are replaced with well-rehearsed, positive phrases such as, "You and I see things differently, but I hope your talent as an umpire etc. reaches my level of talent", or, "I really, really want to break something, and this racket deserves to live another day, so instead I'll just bend this piece of soft iron made from the best of Australian iron ore into the Russian sickle shape for achieving world peace".
Last Saturday more than 1500 people marched in Civic in solidarity with Americans losing access to abortion after the Supreme Court decision and in support of better access to abortion here and around the world. The Canberra Times failed to report this. I hope it covers the next rally on Saturday, July 9, at noon in Garema Place.
After reading Christopher Smith's diatribe in The Canberra Times (Letters, July 5) I felt soiled. If anything serves to "devalue your readership" it's tripe like this. At least you don't censor critics, even the rude ones.
Either Christopher Smith's letter ("Editorial was wrong", Letters, July 5) was a joke or he is.
I note the British government is proposing to seize all Russian assets in the UK and transfer them to Ukraine to finance reconstruction in this war torn country. May I suggest Australia, and all freedom loving nations, do the same.
The ACT government never ceases to amaze. This time it's the management of the CIT. Who better to be the new chair of the board than deputy chair Kate Lundy? She was on the board when CEO Leanne Cover negotiated the controversial multi-million-dollar contract with Patrick Hollingworth.
Having read Douglas Hynd's article "Is Christianity dying in Australia? Here's how to redeem it" (canberratimes.com.au, June 29) my immediate thought was why would we want to redeem it? There are many groups that look after those in greatest need already and many social groups for those who want to join one.
Albo must've spent the weekend singing to himself: "I'd like to be under the sea, in an octopus's garden" whilst French President Macron was on the next song ... " we all live in a yellow (expensive) submarine". My advice to Albo is let the French roar around the South Pacific in their own subs. We don't need any. We need useful vehicles which can be deployed in crises like the floods.
Stephen Holt says "a second Albanese term is not a given". "A second term for Anthony Albanese cannot be taken for granted. History shows why", canberratimes.com.au, July 2). He assumes Anthony Albanese will serve out a full first term. Arguably, that is not a given either.
The ACT government's leaflet enjoining us to prepare for its forthcoming changes to our road network urges us to "rethink your route". Sure: but all of the cross-lake routes will be affected. However we "rethink" our routes we will all still face prolonged and aggravating delays. So much for rational planning.
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