Thursday, 10 December 2020
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Prime Minister. How can Australians trust what this PM says about wages when he has a history of making misleading statements, including, denying the $1.7 billion cut from aged care when it was in the budget papers; denying more Australians are out of work because he excluded them from JobKeeper; pretending robodebt wasn't his policy; wrongly claiming Kevin Rudd had travelled overseas; and denying his role in the sports rorts, in spite of the colour-coded map?
avoided losing their jobs because of the quick, timely and well-targeted support that was brought together by this government. That changed the landscape, economic and otherwise, for Australians during this crisis. Seven hundred thousand Australians would have otherwise lost their jobs. On top of that, as a result of those important supports, we have seen some 80 per cent of the jobs that were lost through the COVID-19 crisis, jobs that were reduced to zero hours, come back over the course of these many months. And not only that; the actions of the government have ensured working together with state and territory premiers and chief ministers, coming together in the national cabinet, which will meet tomorrow for the last time this year here in Canberra, to keep Australia safe and provide the platform for the economic recovery that is occurring.
The Leader of the Opposition might not know what's going on in Australia, but this government does. That's why we've provided the support that we have. The people we must thank most for Australia coming through this crisis are all of those Australians who've quietly gone about their business, helping each other to get Australia through.
Opposition members interjecting—
The angry remonstrations by the Leader of the Opposition betray only one thing: the only job that he is worried about is the one that those behind him are seeking to take off him.
My question is to the Prime Minister. Will the Prime Minister inform the House about how everyday Australians have done what they do best, as they stepped up and came together in a united, national effort to get us through one of our most challenging years, and how the Morrison government both thanks and supports them as we look ahead to 2021?
In 2020 I have never been more proud of this country than I am today as we go towards the end of this year, and I've never been more thankful to my fellow Australians for the effort that they have put in, quietly going about—not seeking thanks—looking after their fellow Australians.
Opposition members interjecting—
I don't understand the interjections from those opposite, because I would assume they would share these sentiments as we express thanks to the people of Australia.
This year, in my Christmas card, there are eight Australians who I want to thank because they represent that united national effort. Gerren Lowe is the Broadway Coles popular greeter. Those who have visited the Coles store there would have seen his cheery smile. He's kept people safe in that shop over the course of COVID-19.Annette Kuipers is a hospital cleaner from St Helens in Tasmania, giving encouragement and care for the sick. Nathan Watts from the CFS in SA was one, joining so many others, at Adelaide Hills and on Kangaroo Island through the black summer fires. Queensland teacher—
The Prime Minister will pause for a second. The member for Shortland has been warned. He continues to interject so he'll leave under 94a. The member for Brand can join him if she wishes to, and the member for Dunkley is warned also.
The member for Shortland then left the chamber.
Private Frank Marrar, a proud Indigenous Australian, who answered the call on both operation COVID assist and bushfire asset; Von Harrington, who called those, as a volunteer, who were in isolation to let her fellow Australians know that while being in isolation they were not alone; and then there's 10-year-old Darcy Hetherton, who was making face masks in regional Victoria. It says on the front of the card, 'Grateful, joyful and hopeful.' We can look forward to 2021 with hope because of the extraordinary work of Australians over the course of this year. We can look to this Christmas season and seek out the joy that is available there as we come together with our families and with fellow Australians. For some Australians, that will be more difficult because Christmas can be a very difficult time of the year, particularly when, for many, there will be one less place at the table.
I would ask all of us here in this place to join the House to thank Australia, to thank Australians. This has been a united national effort of so many Australians quietly going about their business to ensure that this country is amongst a handful of nations in the world to be able to come through this terrible crisis. As Prime Minister, I'm deeply grateful to the people of Australia.