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Tuesday, 9 October 2012
Page: 11572

Mr HARTSUYKER (Cowper) (13:58): I welcome the opportunity to speak on this legislation because we do have a government that proposes to leave some of the most vulnerable Australians in the lurch. We do have a government that is being absolutely callous in the way it is treating these people. We do have a government that cannot manage its own budget and, because it cannot manage its own budget, Australian people will suffer. The government is so eager to wind up the scheme. It has been chasing the scheme on the basis of ideology. It shows that this government does not care for the neediest Australians. It shows that it does not care for those Australians in the very worst of health. It shows that this government is absolutely out of touch with the health needs of many Australians. This scheme provided much needed dental assistance payable under Medicare for Australians who would otherwise be totally unable to afford this treatment.

What has the minister said to these people? She said, on 30 November, 'Your treatment must stop; you have to go on the state waiting list; you may wait for two years; and I don't care.' This minister says, 'I don't care about sick Australians. I only care about my own political future. I only care about Labor ideology.' This minister is leaving Australians in the lurch at a time when their health is most in need.

Debate interrupted.