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Adoption processes are set to be more child-centred thanks to the steadfast efforts of the Canberra Liberals and community advocates.

 

Nicole Lawder MLA
Deputy Leader of the Opposition 
Member for Brindabella

Elizabeth Kikkert MLA
Shadow Minister for Families, Youth and Community Services
Member for Ginninderra

 

MEDIA RELEASE

Thursday August 13, 2020

 

ADOPTION PROCESSES SET TO BE MORE CHILD-CENTRED AFTER LONG PUSH FOR CHANGE

Adoption processes are set to be more child-centred thanks to the steadfast efforts of the Canberra Liberals and community advocates.

Long-awaited changes to the Adoption Act 1993 due to be debated in the ACT Legislative Assembly today were first advocated for by the Canberra Liberals in 2015.

Then Shadow Minister for Families and Community Services Nicole Lawder moved motions in the Assembly to improve adoption processes to produce better outcomes for children and adoption parents.

A Domestic Adoptions Taskforce was subsequently established which recommended legislative change in a 2017 report.

The changes currently before the Assembly will make adoption processes more child-centred by expanding the definition of what’s in the best interest of the child. This expansion will include consideration of the preservation of cultural inheritance and identity of the child, intellectual needs, emotional and stable living conditions, existing relationships and the need to protect the child from exposure to abuse or neglect.

“While these are small changes, they are important to ensuring the wellbeing of children is the focus of the adoption process,” Ms Lawder said.

“Adoption is an incredibly complex and nuanced process which requires great sensitivity. After years of pushing for reform, I am pleased that the Assembly is taking this positive step forward.”

The Shadow Minister for Families, Youth and Community Services Elizabeth Kikkert will move an amendment to ensure the application of the new laws can be assessed after two years.

“We understand the role that stability in home life plays in the healthy development of children. That’s why it’s important to remove any unnecessary obstacles to achieving permanency, including adoption. This bill puts the best interests of the child first,” Mrs Kikkert said. 

Media contact Deborah Seccombe:

P (02) 6205 1580           M 0451 255 891            E This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

 

 

This Aged Care Employee Day, the Canberra Liberals recognise the extraordinary and self-sacrificing efforts of Canberra’s aged care workers.

 

Nicole Lawder MLA

Deputy Leader of the Opposition
Member for Brindabella
Shadow Minister for Urban Services, Seniors and Heritage

Media release

Friday August 7, 2020

Canberra Liberals recognise tireless efforts of aged care workers

 

This Aged Care Employee Day, the Canberra Liberals recognise the extraordinary and self-sacrificing efforts of Canberra’s aged care workers.

The Shadow Minister for Seniors Nicole Lawder will today visit aged care workers to honour their efforts throughout the public health emergency.

“Today is a day to acknowledge aged care employees who, despite the risks with COVID-19 continue to turn up and serve some of the most vulnerable in our community,” Ms Lawder said.

“Aged care workers are out there on the frontline in extraordinary circumstances, doing their best to care for older Canberrans. We know many of them are tired, working extra hard during these times, amid their own caring duties.

“We want all aged care workers to know that we value their work and respect the profession they have chosen.

“I encourage all Canberrans to today express their gratitude and recognition for the valuable work they do,” Ms Lawder said.

 

Media contact Deborah Seccombe:

P (02) 6205 1580           M 0451 255 891            E This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Member for Brindabella, Nicole Lawder was saddened today to hear reports of another vicious dog attack in suburban Flynn in Canberra.

 

Nicole Lawder MLA

Deputy Leader of the Opposition
Member for Brindabella
Shadow Minister for Urban Services, Seniors and Heritage

Media release

Friday 12 July 2019

Lawder outraged by return of dogs after vicious attack

Member for Brindabella, Nicole Lawder was saddened today to hear reports of another vicious dog attack in suburban Flynn in Canberra.

Ms Lawder has spoken to the owners of two dogs that were being walked on their leads by their owners when they were savagely attacked by two large roaming dogs. The descriptions of the attack were harrowing. It was the worst mauling the vet had seen.

Ms Lawder was very pleased to hear that after hours in veterinary care, both the dog victims survived. She was also relieved that whilst in fear for their own safety at the time, the dog’s owners also escaped injury.

However, Ms Lawder is outraged with the process that has the attacking dogs returned to their owner.

Where is the Government’s expressed concern for public safety? Ms Lawder asked. Where is the Government’s expressed concern for the protection of our pets? What protection do the badly injured pet dogs have? Why do the Greens continue to support the Government in allowing pets to be injured, mauled, and attacked? 

Coming on the back of news of a dog attack in Melbourne yesterday where an older man was killed and his wife badly mauled, I fear it is only a matter of time before we have another tragic death of a person from a dog attack in Canberra.

Meantime, dog owners in Canberra are in fear of walking their dogs on their own streets.

With my colleagues, I have been calling on the Government to bring in tougher dog laws in Canberra for years. Our pleas are ignored by this Labor Greens government. 

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Media Contact Sue White

P 02 6205 1520 M 0409 044 979            E This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Elderly Canberrans are fearful of being left behind as they struggle to get clear and timely COVID-19 updates from the ACT Government, the Shadow Minister for Seniors Nicole Lawder said.

 

Nicole Lawder MLA

Deputy Leader of the Opposition
Member for Brindabella
Shadow Minister for Urban Services, Seniors and Heritage

Media release

Thursday 16 July 2020

Fears elderly Canberrans being left behind

 

Elderly Canberrans are fearful of being left behind as they struggle to get clear and timely COVID-19 updates from the ACT Government, the Shadow Minister for Seniors Nicole Lawder said.

 

After making thousands of welfare checks to elderly Canberrans in recent months, Ms Lawder says a common theme among seniors has emerged.

“There is a great sense of confusion, uncertainty and loneliness among elderly Canberrans,” Ms Lawder said.

“While the pandemic has presented enormous challenges for everyone, older Canberrans who are more vulnerable to the virus are really feeling the pressure. They’re concerned about their health, they want to follow the rules but are confused about what the rules are, and they are struggling with a deep sense of loneliness.

“We must do more to ensure they feel safe and connected.

“As many are not computer literate, they are limited in their ability to stay up to date with the best and latest health advice. They rely on community organisations, some of which are facing their own challenges in getting information from the government specific to seniors.

“Older Canberrans with legal or caring responsibilities for family members are unsure of how the rules apply to their situation.

“Many are fearful of accessing testing and are reluctant to visit the doctor for fear of contracting the virus.

“On top of all this, many seniors are struggling with loneliness as they can no longer participate in their usual activities.

“It’s a difficult time for everyone and we need to make sure that elderly Canberrans don’t feel like they’re being left behind. We need to ensure they feel safe and connected,” Ms Lawder said.

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We need a Territory specific plan to protect elderly Canberrans who are vulnerable to abuse, Shadow Minister for Seniors Nicole Lawder said.

On the eve of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, Ms Lawder is calling for localised action to combat the abuse of older people in Canberra.

While the ACT Government supported the National Plan to Respond to the Abuse of Older Australians (Elder Abuse) 2019-23, there was no dedicated funding in its recent budget for an ACT Implementation Plan.

An ACT Implementation Plan would contain measurable actions, goals and targets to help the Territory government achieve objectives set out in the national plan.

“Sadly, we know that some older people in Canberra are suffering from financial, emotional, physical or sexual abuse – often at the hands of people they know,” Ms Lawder said.

“Often victims don’t recognise the abuse. When they do, victims don’t always know where to go for help.

“There is also confusion in the broader community about what constitutes elder abuse and how to identify it is occurring.

“We are morally compelled to ensure that we are doing everything we can to protect elderly Canberrans from abuse and give them the support they need.

“If the ACT does not take strong, measurable action, I have real concerns that more elderly Canberrans will become victims of abuse as our elderly population grows.

“An awareness campaign to help the community identify signs of elder abuse, how to stop it and where to go to for help would be an important component of an ACT Implementation Plan.

“Elderly Canberrans are respected and loved members of our community and we must do all we can to ensure they are cared for,” Ms Lawder said.

Media contact Deborah Seccombe:

P (02) 6205 1580           M 0451 255 891            E This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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