House debates

Tuesday, 12 May 2020

Statements by Members

Health Care

1:52 pm

Photo of Julie CollinsJulie Collins (Franklin, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Minister for Ageing and Seniors) Share this | | Hansard source

If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it's taught us how important our frontline workers are. Today, on the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, International Nurses Day, I want to say a particular thank you to all of those wonderful nurses out there who are working day in, day out throughout this COVID-19 crisis. A particular big shout-out to the nurses in north-west Tasmania, in what has been a horrific outbreak that they've been dealing with on our north-west coast. A big shout-out also to all the wonderful nurses who work in aged care, particularly those in aged-care homes where we've had COVID-19 outbreaks. We're seen two particularly bad outbreaks in nursing homes in Australia recently. I want to say a very big thank you to all the workers in those facilities who have put themselves on the line day in, day out to care for those residents. It is critically important work, and we need to acknowledge what they have been doing every single day: getting up and doing eight changes of personal protective equipment every time you have to go into the facility or out of the facility or into the COVID-19 wards. It is incredibly time consuming, let alone mentally consuming of these people. We need to say a very big thank you.

I also want to say a big thank you to the other frontline workers who have been helping us during COVID-19: those who have kept our food supply happening, our retail workers, our transport workers, our childcare workers, our teachers, our cleaners and our social and disability workers. We thank you one and all.