House debates

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

Statements by Members

New South Wales: Floods

1:48 pm

Photo of Meryl SwansonMeryl Swanson (Paterson, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

Dorothea Mackellar was so right in talking about a land of droughts and flooding rains. We've seen so much of both of those things—and let's include bushfires in that in recent years. I want to acknowledge and thank the members of my community in the magnificent Hunter Valley of which, Deputy Speaker, you are a part as well, where we have seen so much rainfall. In fact, unprecedented amounts of rainfall, even collaring those of the 1955 floods in Maitland.

I want to say thank you to people like Sonia Gannon. Sonia held her community of Gillieston Heights together. Some 3,500 people were stranded. They were not able to get off what is now, tongue-in-cheek, being referred to as 'Gillieston Island'.

I also want to thank Harley, who used his fishing boat to run food, nappies, water and people backwards and forwards, and all of their mates, who nearly burnt out the motors on their boats. I also want to say a big thanks to the Woodberry Warriors, who helped the clean-up around Millers Forest and that area, where homes were just inundated with floodwater—but it's not the water, it's the mud. I want to say a great big thanks to the Hunter Food Relief Centre and the Grine girls. Collectively, you have done a great job. Thank you one and all.