Tuesday 6 October 2009
Mr  FINCH (Rosevears) - Like other members, I was not intending to speak on this motion.  I was interested to hear the case put forward by the member for Apsley, but I did not want to miss the opportunity to speak in front of such a handsome audience.

Mrs Rattray-Wagner - You should have chosen the other party then.

Mr Parkinson - Save your accolade and sit down, will you.

Members laughing.

Mr FINCH - It is interesting, Madam President, and I think you will agree, that people have taken the trouble to travel all the way from the north-east to be part of this debate, to be observers and to give us an expression of their concern about this issue.  This has been going on for seven months yet people are still here, so concerned about their doctor and their community and the services that they appreciated, up until the time of his suspension, and we have heard so much about that from the community and in the media.  I hear what people are saying about fairness and justice.  It befuddles me to a certain extent that with all the comment and support from the community, and the way the media have embraced this issue, the Medical Council have not moved more rapidly on this issue to bring it to a resolution.  I cannot believe Dr McGinty's suspension and the farce with which he was informed of it.  I agree with others, that it is just tardy to deal with a respected community member in that way, and having made that grave decision, not to have moved rapidly to allay the concerns and fears of the community and of Dr McGinity and his staff and his family, to make sure that this issue is resolved as efficiently and as quickly as possible so that the community can move on.

Mr Martin - Perhaps the only answer to your question is the word 'arrogance'.

Mr FINCH - I have been trying to think of a word - perhaps 'aloof'.  It seems to me that the Medical Council have been aloof from the community's concerns and I do not think that is a good reflection on them.  It may be a learning situation for them and perhaps, in hindsight, they would deal with it much better, and you certainly would hope so.  It has not been good for the community to have this as an extra pressure during a time when we have so many other things to concern ourselves with, such as the global financial crisis, jobs, shedding jobs, the need for more employment and those issues that are shared by everybody in our community.  To have their medical service disrupted like this has been most unfair on the north-east community.  I think the Medical Council would have done better to have read the mood of the community and dealt with the issue more efficiently.

Mrs Rattray-Wagner - I don't think they thought there was anyone living up there.

Members laughing.

Mrs Rattray-Wagner - I don't think they thought we had a newspaper or that we might have known what was happening.

Mr FINCH - I will not be drawn on the interjection because I could say something I might regret.  Certainly I share your concern.  It has been interesting to have this brought before us and to get a better understanding of the member for Apsley's approach and the community's concerns.  I think it augurs well for your representation that you have not become emotional over this issue in the way you have dealt with it in the Parliament.  I think you have brought a clear understanding to us of the issues that your community is facing and the process that we have gone through.  I support the motion.

[12.58 p.m.]