26 February, 2021
Over the past two weeks, the inner workings of Parliament House and the toxic culture of Australian party politics have been laid bare after serious allegations of rape by a Liberal staff member.
Like many of you, I was shocked at the inadequate complaints and support process for the victim in her workplace and within the Coalition and the Government. I was not satisfied at the Prime Minister’s initial response and proposed internal review. With my crossbench colleagues and others in Parliament, we pressed for an external, independent review.
Parliament and our federal politics should be a workplace of choice. While Parliament might be considered a “bubble”, it can’t be a lawless bubble. As law makers, we have a duty to ensure staff, visitors, lobbyist, journalists, volunteers and all who engage with our federal parliament have a safe and respectful environment.
I am pleased that the Government accepted the call from many of us in the Parliament and is now conducting a full independent external review. With my colleagues on the crossbench, I met with Senator Birmingham to discuss the draft terms of the review and am satisfied that the Government is committed to a full and frank independent review. I will remain vigilant and engaged on this issue to ensure accountability of all involved.
SPEECHES IN PARLIAMENT
During the two weeks in Parliament, I spoke on a range of topics including:
- Increasing paid parental leave so it is equally split across 52 weeks
- Asking the Treasurer in Question Time whether he would include better paid parental leave
- The need to support independent cinemas
- Criticising the Clean Energy Fund Corporation amendment
- The environmental concern of feral cats
- The Family Law Court merger
- The Environmental Impact Statement for the Beaches Link Tunnel
- The Government’s Industrial Relations Bill
- International Women’s Day
- Sexual harassment of women is a societal issue
- Ending indefinite detention
- Supporting Helen Haines’ Agency Local Power Agency Bill
To read all of my speeches and watch the clips, please click here: https://www.zalisteggall.com.au/parliament_updates
COVID-19 VACCINES BEGIN
The federal government has started its COVID-19 vaccine rollout. For all the latest information and when you should expect to be able to get the vaccination, please visit this link: https://www.health.gov.au/initiatives-and-programs/covid-19-vaccines
UPDATE ON PEP-11
Thanks to everyone who has written with your concerns about the potential extension of the Petroleum Exploration Permit 11, which could see oil drilling and gas exploration off the Warringah coastline.
On 17 February, Deputy Premier Barilaro as one half of the Joint Authority wrote to Minister Pitt (the ultimate decision maker) that he did not recommend extending the permit. Congratulations, the community pressure and advocacy is working.
But it’s not over yet. We haven’t heard a response from Minister Pitt. I have written to him to reinforce the concerns of the community and let him know that we eagerly await his decision.
You can write to Minister Pitt too, let him know that you care about this issue. https://www.facebook.com/KeithPittMP
BEACHES LINK SUBMISSIONS CLOSE
Public submissions on the Environmental Impact Statement close on Monday. To have your say, please click HERE
My team and I attended the webinar that was hosted by the North Harbour Community Group and all the Transport for NSW Virtual Information Sessions. I have also met with a number of community groups.
I appreciate and understand the concerns of many within the community about the impact of this project and have requested to meet with Transport Minister Andrew Constance to discuss the community’s concerns.
I have also requested directly to the Transport Minister that the EIS submission period be extended in order to give the community more time to assess the EIS and put in submissions.
Thank you to the Warringah community for your input on this. I am working on my own submission regarding the EIS, which will reflect many of your concerns.
I spoke about the project this week in Parliament, which you can watch here: https://www.zalisteggall.com.au/zali_steggall_mp_speaks_on_the_western_harbour_tunnel_and_beaches_link
Thank you to the Italian Embassy for hosting the COP 26: Driving Ambition event in Canberra this week with youth forum representatives and members of Canberra's diplomatic community.
I am always buoyed speaking to representatives from other countries about their ambitious climate change policies. It was an honour to meet the Italian Ambassador, Francesca Tardioli and the Ambassador for Finland, Satu Mattila-Budich with Environment Minister Sussan Ley and my colleague Helen Haines MP. The sooner we legislate net zero by 2050, the better off our country will be.
For young people aged 15-29 there is a fantastic opportunity to attend the "Youth4Climate: Driving Ambition" conference in Milan. The details are here and I encourage as many people as possible to apply: https://ambcanberra.esteri.it/ambasciata_canberra/en/ambasciata/news/dall_ambasciata/2021/02/youth4climate-driving-ambition.html
GRANTS FOR WARRINGAH
There are a number of new grants available for residents of Warringah:
Westfield Local Heroes
$10, 000 grants given to organisations who successfully nominate a local hero in their ranks who has contributed to the community. Last year, three Warringah organisations received $10, 000 each for nominating one of their own: Gotcha4Life, Northern Beaches Clean Up Crew and Men’s Forest Kitchen.
Local Sporting Champions
$500-$700 cash for state, national and international sporting juniors representing their school or club, in individual or team sports. It’s a simple online form completed by parents. An electorate-based grant where my office chooses the successful applicants. Over $43, 500 has been given out to 74 kids by my office (even with so many championships being cancelled this past 12 months due to COVID).
Women in Sport Leadership Grant
Provides women with development opportunities in sport. Individual Development Grants support gaining new skills, knowledge and qualifications to progress their leadership pathway. Up to $10,000 to support course/training fees. Organisational Development Grants support national and state sporting organisations to inspire and develop women to become leaders in sport and build leadership competencies and capabilities. Up to $20,000 for projects focusing on leadership and capabilities.
For these open grants and more, please visit my website: https://www.zalisteggall.com.au/grants
- The Orpheum is holding a French Festival starting from March 2 – 31. Check out the films they have on offer HERE
- Did you get our Summer Newsletter in the mail? Click HERE to see it
My team and I are constantly working to find solutions for you, your family and friends and our general community. You can keep up to date at our website www.zalisteggall.com.au or by calling the office on 9977 6411 if you have concerns.
Please forward this on to your network of family and friends in Warringah by sending them this link: https://www.zalisteggall.com.au/sign_up