Ann Scott

Interviewed by
Kezia Griffin, Micheline Astley-Boden, Amanda Accutt, & Casey Northam
Feb 02 2011
Ann Scott
Time Summary Keywords
00:00:05 Ann Scott speaks about her early life in post World War II England, and her decision to leave school and enter the workforce rather than attend university.
00:01:17 Ann Scott recalls her early married life in Uganda and her exposure to academia through her husband.
00:02:19 Ann Scott discusses her decision to study education and return to the workforce.
00:02:50 Ann Scott discusses her early interest in education policy, particularly in the actions of the STOP and CARE group, and her first job at the North Brisbane College of Advanced Education, teaching courses tailored to give women more occupational mobility. She also discusses her PhD in the politics of education, focused on the impacts of the Ahern Committee, and her subsequent employment as a policy officer in the Education Department. Bjelke-Petersen Government 1968-87, Don Fletcher, Education Committee, Education Department, education reform, Margaret Cribb, Mike Ahern, STOP and CARE, women
00:05:54 Ann Scott comments on the Bjelke-Petersen Government and its relationship with the public service. She notes that while the government was unquestionably oppressive, as demonstrated by the increasing use of the police to quell discontent, it allowed the public service a great deal of autonomy and, consequently, it was generally a very comfortable time to work there. Bjelke-Petersen Government 1968-87, Police, SEQEB dispute, women
00:08:53 Ann Scott recalls her appointment as Principal Policy Officer in the Women's Policy Unit in 1990, her subsequent employment in the Public Sector Management Commission and the Social Policy Unit, and the impact of Goss and Rudd's reforms to the ministerial and public service. She highlights the highly interventionist nature of the reforms and the turbulence and difficulty of the time. Cabinet Office, Education Department, Goss Government 1989-96, Kevin Rudd, Public Sector Management Commission, Social Policy Unit, Wayne Goss, women, Women's Policy Unit
00:15:04 Ann Scott contrasts the attitude of the new Goss Government with that of the out-going Bjelke-Petersen Government, and comments on the pros and cons of the new government's review of the public service. She also comments on the Goss Government's implementation of the recommendations of the Fitzgerald Inquiry. 1989 election, Bjelke-Petersen Government 1968-87, Criminal Justice Commission, Fitzgerald Inquiry, gerrymander, Goss Government 1989-96, Police, Public Sector Management Commission, Wayne Goss, women
00:20:58 Ann Scott discusses Native Title, Indigenous policies, and the vastly improved relations between the government and Indigenous people under the Goss Government. Aboriginal Relations Units, Bjelke-Petersen Government 1968-87, Equal Opportunity Policies, Goss Government 1989-96, Indigenous issues, Native Title, Police, women
00:23:42 Ann Scott briefly comments on the 1991 CJC report into the misuse of parliamentary travel funds and also discusses the long-lived popularity of the Goss Government (which she attributes to their reform agenda), and their eventual downfall (wrought by the alienation of the country electorates). She also notes the sometimes difficult relationship between the government and the public service that resulted from the large-scale reforms. Criminal Justice Commission, Fitzgerald Inquiry, Goss Government 1989-96, Public Sector Management Commission, Wayne Goss
00:26:15 Ann Scott discusses her position in the PSMC, and the role the commission played  in the Goss Government's review and reform agenda, including the review of Police and Emergency Services, as well as issues of regionalisation. Corrective Services Commission, Emergency Services, Goss Government 1989-96, Police, Public Sector Management Commission, regions
00:29:04 Ann Scott talks about her work with the Public Sector Management Commission and the major reforms in which she was involved, including the privatisation of correctional facilities, the changes to the police service in line with the findings of the Fitzgerald Inquiry, and the rise of equal opportunity initiatives across the public service.  She also reflects on the challenges posed to the reform agenda by the political cultures of individual departments. Bjelke-Petersen Government 1968-87, Corrective Services Commission, Fitzgerald Inquiry, Goss Government 1989-96, immigrant communities, Indigenous issues, Jim O'Sullivan, Non-English Speaking Background, Police, Police Commissioner, Public Sector Management Commission, sexism, women
00:36:31 Ann Scott speaks about the difficulties for women in the public service, including the glass ceiling, tokenism, sexism and work/life balance. She also speaks about changing recruitment policy, the rise of merit/qualifications based hiring, the introduction of equal opportunity measures, and the importance of women's networking. Equal Opportunity Policies, Goss Government 1989-96, merit based selection, Police, sexism, women, Women's Policy Unit
00:42:17 Ann Scott talks about changes to the Police Service after the Fitzgerald Inquiry and the setting up of the CJC, noting that the reforms were generally viewed positively by the police service, though there was some resentment of the new, tertiary educated officers. Criminal Justice Commission, Fitzgerald Inquiry, Goss Government 1989-96, Jim O'Sullivan, Police, Police Commissioner
00:46:29 Ann Scott comments on the rise of proactive policing post-Fitzgerald Inquiry, and on the implementation of statistical and other analysis of the operations of the Police Service. She suggests that this new approach has contributed to the much improved relationship between police and Indigenous people. She also notes that she disagreed with 1996 CJC assertions of increasing corruption in the police force, though she acknowledges that some level of corruption is inevitable. Bob Atkinson, COMSTAT, Criminal Justice Commission, Fitzgerald Inquiry, Frank Clair, Herman Goldstein, Indigenous issues, Police, Police Commissioner
00:51:26 Ann Scott discusses the improvements to the Queensland Police Service post-Fitzgerald, while pointing out that the pre-Fitzgerald service was not wholly untrustworthy, and that today's service continues to face problems, such as the events on Palm Island. She also talks about the way that police policy was developed, and the role that the commissioner, federal initiatives and election promises played in the process. COMSTAT, Fitzgerald Inquiry, floods 2011, gun laws, Indigenous issues, Palm Island, Police, Port Arthur massacre
00:56:23 Ann Scott talks about the current challenges facing the Police Service, and notes that while they have worked extremely hard to establish better relations with the Indigenous community, this continues to be a major issue. She also addresses the issue of racism within the Police Service, particularly Colin Dillon's 1997 complaint, drawing the comparison with sexism, and noting that the prejudices within the Police Service reflect those within society more broadly. Cape York, Colin Dillon, Cultural Advisory Unit, Fitzgerald Inquiry, immigrant communities, Indigenous issues, Police, sexism
01:02:05 Ann Scott speaks about attempts to raise numbers of Police Service officers and other public servants drawn from Indigenous or non-English speaking backgrounds. Equal Opportunity Policies, Goss Government 1989-96, Indigenous issues, Non-English Speaking Background, Police
01:05:36 Ann Scott reflects on her career, saying that it was a fascinating job but that, with hindsight, she regrets not accepting a promotion to the cabinet area, choosing instead to remain with the QPS. She counts the increase in Aboriginal police recruits as the proudest moment of her career. Indigenous issues, Police, women
01:07:45 Ann Scott reflects on the experience of women in the workplace. women
01:08:40 Interview ends.