Statement- Regional Victoria's coronavirus road map

Our regional economy is further decimated each day that these lockdowns continue. Jobs are lost, businesses will collapse, mental health problems escalate, schoolchildren face setbacks, family violence incidents increase, and people lose more hope. I call on the Government to urgently reconsider the alternatives that can manage the health risks and provide some economic flexibility and an immediate reopening for businesses in areas where there are no active cases.  Otherwise, we risk this road map being a road to ruin.

Members Statement- Cross border restrictions

Restrictions across the borders into New South Wales and South Australia continue to impact the lives of tens of thousands of people across Northern Victoria. Over the last eight weeks, we’ve seen instances where changes to permits were imposed without 24 hours notice, valid permits were cancelled overnight and health clinicians, students, teachers, farmers, businesses and the general public were left flummoxed and uncertain about their eligibility.

Speech- Extension to State of Emergency

There are many things to say about this Bill. I’ll start simply by pointing out that it will undoubtedly be one of the most important pieces of legislation on which we will be required to vote during this term of Parliament.  Both practically and symbolically. I make that observation because this is a debate that relates not just to a serious public health problem – but also to the very essence of how government should be allowed to function and operate in a democracy. More to the point, it’s a debate that requires us to address questions about the extent to which it is appropriate for governments and public officials to seek to impose their own will over the rights, freedoms and liberties of citizens.

Notice of motion- Failure to attend court

I give notice that, on the next day of meeting, I will move that this House recognises that many Victorians fail to appear when due to attend court; and I note that despite the fact that some of these people who fail to attend are already in custody in prison or on remand, they are still not successfully transported to court. I call on the Government to strengthen its policies and procedures so it is difficult for offenders to refuse to attend court.

Notice of motion- Victims of crime

I give notice that, on the next day of meeting, I will move that this House recognises that people who become a victim of crime due to the murder of a loved family member or friend and that this house endorses the improved support to victim support services such that they may provide ongoing support to victims.

Murray Basin Rail Project- Letter to Deputy Prime Minister

On 12 August I wrote a joint letter with my colleague Stuart Grimley MP to the Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon Michael McCormack MP. We asked the Federal Government to advise when the response to the revised business case on the Murray Basin Rail Project will be announced and to confirm their continued support for the full completion of this project. The Murray Basin Rail Project is extremely important to Northern and Western Victoria and has the capacity to deliver economic growth and boost productivity. We continue to be concerned with a lack of transparency around the revision of the business case, and share stakeholders' fears that the project will be watered down or continue to be put on the back burner.

Increased drug driver testing on roads and driver education

I have called for increased drug testing on roads and driver education for young people as part of my submission to the Victorian Inquiry into the Increase in Victoria’s Road Toll. The Transport Accident Commission reports that in the last 5 years approximately 41% of all drivers and motorcyclists killed who were tested, had drugs in their system and 25% of Victorians who use recreational drugs admit to driving under the influence.

'Trading Bubbles' for regional Victoria

Towns in Northern Victoria will face extraordinary inconveniences as the state announced border closures between New South Wales and Victoria. I have called for the Government to consider regional trading bubbles. Businesses face further hardship under the border closures and I have asked the Premier to immediately ease trading restrictions in regional areas.

Supporting our CFA Volunteers

I am disheartened but not surprised, as complaints roll in from across volunteer brigades following the reassignment of 171 support staff from the CFA to Fire Rescue Victoria. I offer my ongoing support to CFA volunteer brigades, which are critical to our safety and to that of regional communities.

National Redress Scheme

I am calling on the Victorian Government to deny funding and grants to organisations that fail to sign up to the National Redress Scheme for institutional sexual abuse survivors.

We secured an Inquiry into Victoria's Justice System

My motion to refer an inquiry into the justice system has passed the Parliament, and the Legal and Social issues Committee will now undertake the broadest inquiry into the justice system for nearly 30 years.

Child abuse tendency evidence

I moved a motion in Parliament to expand evidence and make sex offenders' histories known to Juries. We should follow the lead of other states and expand the range of evidence admissible to juries.

Victims of Crime- Establishment of Prisoner Compensation Quarantine Fund Register

After months of lobbying I am very pleased that the government has now established a Prisoner Compensation Quarantine Fund Register, making it easier for victims to access information about about payments made to prisoners.

Action to fix Basin Plan

The Murray Basin Plan must take an urgent approach to making the changes required to deliver fair and equitable water flows. I hope this is a step to ensure our farmers receive the water they so desperately need. It is one thing to be paying astronomical amounts for water, it is another to actually ensure they receive it.

Child Protection

The 'Lost, not forgotten' report of Victoria's Commissioner for Children and Young People is a chilling read, and reveals continued failures across child protection and family services. The findings of this report are unacceptable, and we need to prioritise sustained funding to address the root cause that leaves vulnerable children exposed. We need to stop failing these children.

Murray Basin Rail Project

The Murray Basin Rail Project was meant to standardise the rail network, efficiently allowing producers to transport greater volumes to port and boost jobs and the regional economy. What's happening?

Daniel Morcombe Foundation - Day for Daniel

I am inspired by the strength shown each and every day by Denise and Bruce Morcombe. It was a privilege to be a part of "Day for Daniel'. The Daniel Morcombe Foundation does wonderful work, and on a day like today it reinforces our commitment to a public register for child sex offenders and continuing to do everything we can to keep children safe.

Homelessness in Victoria- Call for a hearing in Wangaratta

I have called for a public hearing in Wangaratta as part of the Victorian Parliament’s Inquiry into Homelessness. The Inquiry is being conducted by the Legislative Council’s Legal and Social Issues Committee, of which I am a member, and is considering the state of homelessness in Victoria.

Motion for Mandatory sentences on assaults on Emergency Services workers

I moved a Motion in Parliament for Minimum Jail sentences for assaults on Emergency Services workers. Current Victorian laws on Mandatoy sentencing in this instance are inadequate and contain loopholes for offenders to avoid Jail. I will continue to work for victims and ensure their voices are heard.