House debates

Thursday, 12 November 2020

Matters of Public Importance

Morrison Government

3:48 pm

Photo of Julie OwensJulie Owens (Parramatta, Australian Labor Party) Share this | Hansard source

Yes, exactly: do the maths. You've made an extraordinary announcement. You've actually announced three level 4 home-care packages in my electorate per year for the next four years. Congratulations! What a wonderful photo opportunity that was, but what an extraordinary—I was going to say 'lie' but I know I can't use that word. But how extraordinary that you've misled the people in Parramatta in that way.

Let's look at what else the government have promised. Back in 2018, in the A Matter of Care strategy, the government promised to set up a task force to look at staffing requirements for aged care. That was back in 2018. None of the strategy's 14 measures have been implemented. They've done nothing. Back in 2017, there were two government reports into elder abuse, the ALRC report, Elder abuse: a national legal response, and the Carnell-Paterson report. Both were published in 2017. Four years later, the government says they're actually going to set up the review that they promised back then—for 2021. That's four years later. Meanwhile, we've got 100 reported assaults of the elderly every week, with up to 1,000 unreported assaults every week, and that's been going on for four years. The government made the announcement four years ago that they were going to do something about it—and nothing. And now, finally, four years later, they announce that they're going to set up the Serious Incident Response Scheme that they promised four years ago. Honestly, this is the reality of this government—not the glossy announcements that we get all the time; not the wonderful press releases; not the market-tested announcements. The reality is something quite different, and it's truly shocking.

Let's look at the NBN. Parramatta is the second CBD and geographic centre of Sydney. It's the capital of the third-largest economy in Australia. We were promised the NBN in 2016. We were promised it in 2018. We were promised it in 2020. The minister says it's finished. We're not getting it until 2022! The second CBD of Sydney, the geographic centre, the capital of the third-largest economy with the second-largest workforce of any economy in the country—bigger than the entire state of South Australia; sorry, South Australians—is not getting the NBN until 2022. And they're saying: 'Sorry; there are heritage issues.' It's Parramatta—who knew? Honestly! Everything you learned about in school, about the Rum Corps, about Macquarie—it all happened in Parramatta. There is heritage there. Every time we build anything there's heritage. It's not an excuse. Again, it's an announcement without substance. Honestly, it's the tale of two governments—but the real one is appalling.

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