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Community & Business

24 June, 2023

Coulton's Catch Up - May 30, 2023

Speech on the Voice to Parliament

Last week in Canberra I had the opportunity to make a speech on the hypocrisy of big corporations, the Labor government and the Greens when it comes to the Voice to Parliament. Their actions do not match their words when they speak of empowering Aboriginal people while at the same time ripping opportunities and vital services out of the areas in which they live. Many of my constituents are Aboriginal people and I will do all I can to support them. I have great respect for many Aboriginal leaders in our communities who are doing a tremendous job. I am in favour of constitutional recognition, but I do not see this Voice translating to measurable positive outcomes for people in my electorate.


National Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week runs from May 27 to June 3, 2023 and is an opportunity to reflect, remember and learn. On May 26, it was also National Sorry Day, when we acknowledge the suffering experienced by the Stolen Generations. It was my first week in Parliament when Kevin Rudd gave the National Apology to the Stolen Generations in 2008, and I know this meant a great deal to many Aboriginal people. As the member of parliament representing the electorate with the secondhighest percentage of Aboriginal people in Australia I have and will continue to work towards reconciliation by supporting local leaders in the communities I represent. Their strength and resilience is the reason that I do see a bright future for Aboriginal people in this country, though there remains challenges to overcome.


Infrastructure at risk under Labor

The grief that the minister for Infrastructure has caused by putting a cloud over infrastructure projects in regional NSW, and especially the Inland Rail, is a disgrace. Farmers, local councils, private businesses, hundreds of contractors and entire communities who have invested in the Inland Rail are waiting for the minister to make the future of this project clear. Inland Australia relies on good, safe, effective infrastructure, and to leave our people in such a state of uncertainty on projects of national significance is unacceptable.


Saluting Their Service

It was my privilege to present Vietnam veteran Geoffrey Stanford with a Saluting Their Service Certificate of Appreciation last week thanking him for his service to our country. Geoffrey bravely served on combat operations in South Vietnam as a member of the Royal Australian Infantry Corps in the second Battalion of the Royal Australian Regiment. He also received a certificate on behalf of his brother Gregory Stanford, who was killed in action at the age of 22 as he served in the Royal Australian Infantry Corps in South Vietnam.

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