House debates

Thursday, 18 March 2021

Statements by Members

Water Safety

1:46 pm

Photo of Jason FalinskiJason Falinski (Mackellar, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

Nearly everyone on the Northern Beaches can tell you a story about how a surf lifesaver has helped them or someone they know. We have a special connection with the surf lifesaving movement, and some of the oldest clubs in Australia reside in my electorate. Generations of Northern Beaches residents have chosen to put their life on the line in the service of their community. We could not be prouder of, or more thankful to, these volunteers even as COVID-19 put further strain on our already stretched resources. The Prime Minister recently came to Collaroy to announce additional funding for our volunteers. This support is earmarked especially for training and equipment to help those on the front line of water safety.

As Australians are choosing to travel domestically due to international border closures, we will be relying on our surf lifesavers more than usual. We have seen this played out with more water safety incidents this year than at the same time last year. This points to the desperate need to empower our local volunteers and honour their commitments by ensuring they have the tools to keep our community safe. If you want to see the modern embodiment of Australian values of mateship and community service, look no further than Surf Life Saving Australia. I'm always impressed by their professionalism, and we will give any support we can to empower our local heroes. On behalf of the residents of Northern Beaches, I'd like thank our surf lifesavers and commend their selflessness, which is the backbone of our community.