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Canberra Today 3°/5° | Sunday, May 22, 2022 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

Government ‘silent’ on Dhulwa inquiry, say Libs


Dhulwa Mental Health Unit.

THE ACT government are remaining silent on the details of an inquiry into violent assaults against nurses at a Canberra mental health unit, the Liberal opposition claims.

Almost two weeks after agreeing to hold an independent inquiry into the Dhulwa Mental Health Unit, shadow health minister Leanne Castley says the ACT government has still not released any detail about the investigation.

“Two weeks after Minister Davidson announced the inquiry and this Labor-Greens government has been completely silent,” Ms Castley said.

The ACT government’s decision to hold an inquiry follows information released by the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) ACT which revealed more than 100 reports of assaults at the unit in a six-month period.

According to the ANMF, several staff of the centre sustained significant injuries including a broken arm, broken nose and broken fingers.

One nurse described working at the facility like being “sent into the killing fields”.

Ms Castley, who backed the union’s call for an independent inquiry, says health minister Emma Davidson must give Dhulwa nurses information about the inquiry, including the terms of reference and a timeframe.

She says security must also be a key focus of the inquiry.

“What is the point of having security guards if they cannot intervene and protect our nurses when they are being attacked?” Ms Castley said.

“The safety of nurses should be the Minister’s top priority but again we see this Labor-Greens Government dragging its feet on accountability and transparency.”

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