Independent Member for the Shepparton District Suzanna gave an impassioned speech to the Victoria Legislative Assembly on Thursday morning, demanding the Parliament resume sitting as soon as possible rather than the Andrews Government timetable of returning on August 4.
“I think we should be coming back. I think for those of us in the community who are in regional areas it is sometimes very hard to get the connectivity that you need with government,” Ms Sheed said.
Ms Sheed spoke at length about the impact of the Coronavirus Pandemic on regional Victoria.
“Our communities have been plunged into the worst crisis they have ever experienced, and that has had an amazing impact … there are a lot of other people in the community who are desperate to keep going …they need their businesses to open, they need to re-employ people.
“Everyone has that fear of JobKeeper and JobSeeker finishing in a few months’ time. What will that mean? They have been incredible buffers to the reality of this absolute crisis and pandemic that we are in at the moment.”
Under such circumstances it is vital the Victorian Parliament keep sitting to allow members to bring the concerns and needs of their constituents to the government, according to Ms Sheed.
“For us to now leave this place and not come back until August, to stick to a timetable that was set in different times is to me a failure on all of us,” Ms Sheed said.
“I am not here to talk about the politics of it; I am talking about what our community would expect. They are all out there trying to cope, trying to live on what is a lot less money. We are so privileged that we are in this place and that we are fully employed and that we have the privilege of looking after our communities and our electorates.
“I think the community expects us to be in this place and to be not only seen to be working hard but to actually be working hard, because nobody else is taking holidays. We cannot go overseas; we cannot do the things that normal life would have led us to so in a time like this we need to be at work.”
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