Rakhine State in Myanmar Motion

This week in the Parliament I presented a motion about the current situation in Myanmar, following my visit earlier this year.

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2017 Water for Life Community Grants

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Seqwater has launched the 2017 Community Grants program - Water for life. Water for Life Community Grants will provide funding to improve South East Queenslanders' knowledge and understanding of catchment health and the water cycle. We're looking for existing community initiatives and new partnerships that will benefit from grants of up to $10,000.

Your support of the Water for life Community Grants program and community groups means more benefits for our local waterways and a greater appreciation of water as a precious resource.

Applications close 15th May 2017.

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Labor opposed the Turnbull government's cuts to families

Labor opposed the Turnbull Government’s late night deal in the Senate to cut $1.4 billion from Australian families.

Malcolm Turnbull’s latest cut on Australian families is straight from the horror 2014 Abbott Budget – a freeze of the Family Tax Benefit Payment rates for two years.

These cuts will affect every single recipient of Family Tax Benefit, leaving 1.5 million Australian families worse off.

Around 588,000 of these families receive the maximum rate of Family Tax Benefit Part A, which means their household income is less than $52,000 a year.

The Liberals, Nationals, One Nation and Nick Xenophon all voted to cut family payments to 1.5 million Australian families in the Senate last night.

Families now know who is on their side when it comes to helping them with the cost of raising a child. 

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Congratulations to the Queensland Government for removing 'gay panic' defence.

Federal Shadow Assistant Minister for Equality, Terri Butler MP, has congratulated the Qld Parliament for amending section 304 of the Criminal Code to remove the ‘gay panic’ defence.

Prior to this, under Queensland law, people accused of murder could have their charges downgraded to manslaughter if they could prove their victim made a non-violent gay advance. 

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Turnbull government MP claims housing affordability not a federal issue.

 

Member for Forde Bert van Manen today claimed housing affordability is not a federal issue.

In response to a question from the ABC’s Steve Austin about housing affordability, Mr van Manen said:

“Well firstly, Steve, I don’t believe housing affordability is a federal issue. Housing, planning, development approval is all done at a state and a local government level.”

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Media Release - 1800RESPECT Under Time Crunch

Last night in Senate Estimates the Department of Social Services confirmed  they are satisfied four days is sufficient time for Rape and Domestic Violence Services Australia (RDVSA) to submit a lengthy and time consuming Expression of Interest to continue their contract with 1800RESPECT.

 

RDVSA has been providing specialised trauma counselling to clients of 1800RESPECT since its inception in 2010.

 

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Michaelia Cash defends replacing Queensland service with a Victorian one

Minister for Women and Minister for Employment Michaelia Cash has defended de-funding the Queensland Working Women's Service, on the basis that a Victorian service, and a horticultural employers' association, have been funded instead. 

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Pay cuts will hurt local workers

New figures show Southsiders in Griffith will be hit hard by the Turnbull Government’s refusal to stop the Fair Work Commission’s cut to penalty rates.

More than 11,929 people, or one in 7 workers, in the federal electorate of Griffith work in the retail, food and accommodation industries affected by the cuts.

These workers stand to lose up to $77 per week.

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Keep kindy funding beyond 2017

Kindy funding is once again under threat. Call on Malcolm Turnbull and the Liberals to save it.

Sign my petition here.

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Making it safer to blow the whistle on wrongdoing

I am currently part of a parliamentary inquiry about how to create a pro-whistleblowing culture in Australia.

In recent weeks our inquiry has heard from international experts in whistleblowing, based right here in Queensland. Professor AJ Brown and colleagues from Griffith University spoke to the inquiry, as did Ethicos Group founder Howard Whitton. As well as being an expert who has worked with international bodies including the OECD and the UN, Howard is a Southsider.

 

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