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Monday, 16 October 2017
Page: 10638

Ms SWANSON (Paterson) (13:54): Last Monday night's airing on the ABC of Four Corners gave visual representation to the volume of PFAS-laden firefighting foam that was allowed to leach into my community's aquifer and earth. It revealed that the Department of Defence knew the dangers of it years before they let on to my community. This contamination and contaminant continues to leach into the properties of the people I represent and, even today, the technology and equipment in place is inadequate to deal with the situation. It is a lot like, I'm feeling, the government response is at the moment—totally inadequate.

The value of people's properties has been decimated. Their livestock, their eggs and their produce are unsafe for consumption. The soil and water beneath them are tainted with this persistent chemical. This pollutant is in their very bodies—in the blood of their children. Through no fault of their own, many people in my electorate of Paterson have lived a nightmare for the past two years that has touched every facet of their lives.

I implore the government and the member for Sturt, whom I have a good relationship with: Minister Pyne, come to Williamtown, bring the Prime Minister and the defence minister. Come with a decent solution. We are tired of it, we are angry, we need your help. (Time expired)