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Monday, 7 September 2015
Page: 6084


Senator LINES (Western Australia) (15:14): I rise to speak on the motion to take note of answers by Senator Brandis to questions on jobs and a strong economy, both of which we have yet to see materialise under those opposite. Again, they are living in a parallel universe. Remember the famous quote from Mr Hockey: 'Just go and get a good job with good pay.' The jobs that have been created are low-paid jobs. They are low-paid, part-time and casual jobs. It is time those opposite revealed the truth about those jobs. They are not high-paying, good jobs where people can rely on an income. That is the truth of it.

There was another thing we heard today in response to the question I put to Senator Brandis. He told me that the only premier in the country calling for an increase in GST is Mr Weatherill. Again, that is completely wrong from the government because in July of this year their very own Colin Barnett, the man who has single-handedly wrecked the Western Australian economy, particularly for the people in the Canning electorate, said he wanted a GST increase. He even named the increase. He wants it to go up to 12.5 per cent. Again, when those opposite attack, they should at least get their facts right.

But let's just be clear about what the Abbott government's inaction has done for the people of Canning. It will mean that their health services will be down $3.5 billion because cuts have been made to the South Metropolitan Health Service and the WA Country Health Service, which serve the Canning electorate. Most of those opposite do not travel south of the river, but I lived in the Canning electorate for 12 years. In fact, as a young person, I went to school in the Canning electorate. My children went to the local hospitals. My children went to the local schools. These are the schools that those opposite have taken funding off. In fact, in the seat of Canning, almost $2 million has been taken out of schools. These include the primary school that my children attended, the high school that I attended and the health services that I and my children used when for 12 years I lived in the seat of Canning. Make no mistake, the Premier of Western Australia, the wrecker of Western Australia's economy, along with the Abbott government, wants an increase to the GST.

We have had two years of the Abbott government and two years of suffering in the electorate of Canning. Let me tell you some other things about the seat of Canning. It has the highest number of pensioners in a metropolitan area. That is completely lost on those opposite as they rip money out of health services, make going to the doctor more expensive, increase fuel taxes and incur additional cost to pensioners. There is no regard for that.

In relation to education, where we have seen almost $2 million ripped out of the seat of Canning, let me inform the Senate that Canning has one of the highest truancy levels in a metropolitan area. Again, what action have we seen from those opposite? We have seen absolutely nothing. Between 2009 and just last week, we have had two Auditor General reports in Western Australia looking at the issue of truancy right across the state of their mate, Colin Barnett, the wrecker of the Western Australian economy. There have been two reports put out on Western Australian schools, and the premier has said categorically that there is no plan to attack issues of truancy in Western Australia. So we have very high truancy levels in the seat of Canning.

In Mandurah—none of those opposite would know where Mandurah is, but it is in the seat of Canning—youth unemployment is the highest in the country. It is way, way above the national average—14.6 per cent of young people in Mandurah in Canning have no job prospects and are completely out of work. Since those opposite have been in power, 1,000 more people in Canning have had to rely on income support because there are no jobs and because the jobs those opposite have created are low paid, part time and casual. That is the truth of it.

The people of Canning know about the ChAFTA. When I speak to them, they tell me they are very worried about their jobs. They are very worried about health. They are very worried about education. And they are very worried about the Prime Minister. It does not matter whether they vote for us or they vote for the Liberals; they are united that the Prime Minister has to go. (Time expired