Tuesday, 31 August 2021
Tomorrow is Thank You for Working in Aged Care Day. I want to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to aged-care workers for all their hard work and dedication and the care they give right around this country to older Australians. In the last 18 months with COVID-19 it has been particularly difficult for those in this sector to care for older Australians because they themselves, their families and the people they are charged with caring for have all been at risk. In this sector we have seen a lack of resources to look after the most vulnerable Australians. All aged-care workers have gone beyond what we could have expected of them to ensure the safety of older Australians and to give them the support that they so richly deserve.
Over the last eight years of Liberal governments we have seen this system in complete and utter chaos, with crisis after crisis. Really the only way you can categorise this sector now is as severely neglected. The Morrison government has passed from failed minister to failed minister charge of this sector. They have desperately failed to protect older Australians and in particular to support aged-care workers in this country. They have refused to support a pay rise for them. There are still 60,000 aged-care workers in this country who do not have a vaccine. This is outrageous.
This government has proven time and time again it undervalues aged-care workers in this country. It's not good enough. It's another election promise that Scott Morrison has failed to deliver on. He said he was going to make aged care a priority of his government. He has failed. He has failed so dismally that we have seen too many deaths in this country. It's outrageous. (Time expired)