House debates

Thursday, 20 September 2018

Distinguished Visitors

2:01 pm

Photo of Scott MorrisonScott Morrison (Cook, Liberal Party, Prime Minister) Share this | Hansard source

On indulgence, I would like to add my sincere congratulations on behalf of the House, and particularly the government members of the House, to Senior Constable Stephanie Bochorsky for her incredible bravery. I'm so pleased it has been recognised in the way it has been in this award.

I also want to thank you, as there are others in this chamber who are the children of police officers, as I am, and we know the sacrifices that police officers make every single day. We understand the impacts that has on the families of police officers. When you take those risks, we know there are so many other things pressing in around you in the many other responsibilities that you have.

Some nights ago, back in 2015, Stephanie heard screams from a neighbour's home. Though off duty, she rushed into that home and found a child alight, on fire, and another being doused in petrol. It's unimaginable. The children were four and seven years of age. That's enough to take in just at that. Stephanie fought off the man—I'd hardly describe him as one—who was the children's father, removed the children from the house and cared for the family. None of us can really comprehend the terror and the evil of that night and, of course, our thoughts and prayers are with the children this day.

It said a lot about what Stephanie believes her service is about. Not just police officers but those who work in our paramedic and ambulance services—my brother is a paramedic—our fire services and our emergency services all have a similar culture. She said, 'I took an oath to serve and protect the community on or off duty, uniform or not, 24/7.' Everyone in this chamber has sworn an oath. You have given us an incredible lesson about how you live up to one. Thank you, Stephanie.

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