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Tuesday, 28 October 2014
Page: 12235

Mr BROAD (Mallee) (13:37): One of the great things about this place is that it is the people's house. Last night I put a post on my Facebook page asking, 'What is it you want me to raise in the federal parliament?' The people of Mallee have vision and passion—I received 126 posts and the page was viewed by over 10,000 people. They said that we should be buying more Australian products, that we need to value-add and that we should not undervalue regional tourism. They said we need to invest in regional infrastructure, particularly water and telecommunications infrastructure. They also said we need to educate people about where their food comes from and that we need to reduce the burden of red tape on small businesses and farmers, as well as reducing the costs they face—and that is what we are working hard to do.

We have an ice problem in my electorate. We need to address that, resource it and educate. We need to make child care work for regional country towns—and that is a challenge for us. We need to ensure that health services are adequate for people who live in the bush. These were very strong themes and they come from very passionate communities. I believe that the people I represent are engaged. They are interested in what goes on in this chamber—and what we do here is for them. There were over 10,000 views and over 126 posts on Facebook from the people I represent. What they wanted to say was that this parliament is their parliament—and they want to make sure that regional Australia gets its fair share.