Tuesday, 30 November 2021
Matters of Urgency
COVID-19: Morrison Government
[by video link] As a servant to the people of Queensland and Australia, I agree that the Morrison government did too little, too late; yet I find it damned hard to agree with Labor, whose premiers have damaged our economy and our jobs. The Morrison-Joyce government has had no plan, was slow to respond and was slow at every point on the critical path. The government failed to learn lessons from other nations that were ahead of them—well ahead of them—such as Taiwan, where they protect the sick, the aged and the vulnerable, while keeping their economy and people's businesses and jobs going. The Morrison-Joyce government and state premiers have been busy on the political point-scoring, not the doing.
Queensland's Annastacia Palaszczuk is far more concerned about looking good and sounding good than doing good. Her border lockdowns and sacking of health workers have damaged families, businesses and jobs in the regions. Under Labor, Queensland's economic future is now jeopardised.
Had the Morrison-Joyce government allowed equal priority to other treatments, such as antivirals, many more Australians would have been treated and safe and the virus would be finished, as it is in other countries that are using the antivirals. Instead, the Morrison-Joyce government's reliance on only one treatment is a major risk—a provisional COVID injection that the TGA did not test and could not and will not guarantee as safe, and that concerns a hell of a lot of Australians. Yet the Morrison-Joyce government and the states have chosen to punish nearly two in every 10 Australians for not taking this unacceptable injection and the risk associated with it.
Understand us, Prime Minister: the Liberal-Nationals and the Labor-Greens are forcing a huge segment of the public into voting against you. Calling honest everyday Australians 'antivax extremists' has never been the answer—unless you and Labor believe that punishing and threatening workers with the sack is the right way. I don't. The name 'national cabinet' sounds grand yet is nothing more than a meeting of the Prime Minister, state premiers and territory chief ministers, trying to hide behind collective decision-making instead of standing up and being accountable for decisions. National cabinet is a pretend concept to protect politicians from what they are not doing and to hide their mistakes.
It's time to stop sacking workers and instead focus on jobs and the economy and on people's health and safety. Instead of looking good, let's have the people safe and healthy. One Nation will continue to stand up for all Australians, injected or not injected, for our jobs, our rights and our freedoms, and to keep Australians safe.
I want to remind senators of what the people are saying. On Friday night I attended a lively meeting in Redlands, a suburb in the south-east of Brisbane. I also attended a meeting on the Gold Coast on Saturday and a meeting in Moreton on Sunday night. I heard about the bankruptcies. I heard about a person who has built a business up and has had to sell his house to pay off the assets in the business, and his wife and daughter will now not be able to work after the 17th—because of Annastacia Palaszczuk's edict and medical apartheid. So what the hell does he do? He's one of many, many people who are very angry, and rightly so. What about the veteran up at Moreton who has physical injuries and cannot get physio anymore? She's a veteran and served the country—and now she's worried she will slide backwards physically and mentally. What about all the other veterans in the same position? This is what Scott Morrison and Annastacia Palaszczuk are doing to this country. (Time expired)