Thursday, 3 September 2020
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Prime Minister. Will the Prime Minister outline to the House how, in the midst of the global pandemic and COVID-19 recession, the Morrison government is acting to restore our economy, guarantee the essential services Australians rely on and keep Australians safe?
I thank the member for Boothby for her question. She knows, as I'm sure all members in this chamber know, that these are incredibly challenging times for all Australians right across our country, wherever you live in our nation. The global pandemic and the COVID-19 global recession—from which Australia is not immune, as we learned yesterday with the release of the national accounts—are placing a significant call and strain on Australians across our country. They are placing a strain on our nation's governments. They're putting a strain on all of these things, and they've been putting a great strain on the resources of governments, including the federal government.
Our response is not to surrender to this. It's not to surrender one of the most important things to Australians, and it is not to surrender the responsibilities of our government in protecting those things that matter so much to Australians. Our response, as a government, has been to act—to take action to secure Australia's future in the midst of the biggest crisis this country has seen since the Second World War. That response has been immediately to seek to cushion that blow, to ensure that we stay on top of the virus to enable Australians to be able to move through this terrible crisis, to restore our economy and to ensure that an additional 700,000 Australians did not end up as unemployed, as a result of the early and unprecedented action taken by our government. But it's not just the economic response for now, but also into the future, with investment in training, with investment in infrastructure, with investment in the ease of doing business so businesses can employ Australians and invest more, and with investment in research and technology—the investments that are necessary to build Australia's capacity for the future as we recover. But it has also been to deliver on our guarantee for the essential services that Australians rely on. The record funding that we have committed for schools, for hospitals, for disability care, for aged care—all of these will be delivered despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the COVID-19 recession.
I want to assure Australians that, despite the uncertainty and anxiety of these times, this government will deliver on those essential services that you all rely on, particularly during this pandemic period. And we will honour our commitment to keep Australians safe from all those who would seek to do us harm, whether within our borders or without, or whether it's those who would seek to take advantage of the most vulnerable in our community. Whether it's children on the internet or those who would seek to do us harm from further afield, our government's commitment is to ensure that we keep Australians safe here, at home, behind our borders and beyond. (Time expired)