Speeches in Parliament
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (10:42): I rise to speak on the Defence Legislation Amendment (2017 Measures No. 1) Bill 2017. This bill contains four schedules, which seek to smooth processes, increase protections for reservists, realise a recommendation from the First Principles Review of Defence, add contemporary definitions and enable reclassification of those who leave Defence and later find they were eligible for a medical discharge.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (15:42): I think when it comes to the legislation before the House today, the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Welfare Reform) Bill 2017, what we've got is legislation that really reeks of politics. That's what this is about. If we cast our minds back to the budget night, where I think the Minister for Human Services was going to go down the sewer and collect human waste material and test it, it was, at that point, a very half-baked idea. Of course, it's months and months later, and now we finally see, after the government trying to play the politics around drug-testing trials for welfare recipients, legislation that really has a bit of politics in it, some administrative changes and elements that are deeply flawed.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (10:06): I rise today to speak about the importance of appreciating and valuing our childcare workers, often referred to, importantly, as our early educators. Ask any parent who sends their child to child care and they will tell you the value and importance that our early educators bring. Our early educators provide essential care for children. Most families need two incomes to get by, and this would be impossible without childcare centres providing a safe place where parents can trust their children are looked after. But our childcare centres are more than that. Our childcare workers and early educators play an invaluable role in educating our children.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (10:59): This is a very important motion because it highlights—despite what those on the other side have said—that it was Labor out in front on this issue, talking about the importance of the Northern Adelaide Irrigation Scheme project. It was Labor that took it to the last election as an election commitment and it was Labor that, in opposition, led the way in committing the funds. The Liberal Party— embarrassed, being outdone again and again by Labor in South Australia—have committed a measly 50 per cent of what Labor committed, so their heart isn't really in this project.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (10:44): I rise today to congratulate all the award winners of the inaugural Hallett Cove Business Association Local Business Awards. In my electorate of Kingston, there are many small businesses that are the backbone of economic growth and employment in our community. Our region is home to many longstanding businesses—shops, stores and services—that have been around for decades and have turned into important local institutions. I'm excited when I see many new small businesses open up in our region. I've met many business owners who've taken that leap of faith to pursue a passion or an idea and open a small business in the southern suburbs of Adelaide.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (13:54): Serving as a member of the Australian Defence Force involves risk and sacrifice. We have in the past and continue to ask our serving personnel to put their lives on the line and to put the needs of the country before their own. We have in the past prepared and sent many to foreign lands to fight for our nation, and we continue to do this. During the course of their service, some have been significantly wounded or injured and will carry this with them for the rest of their lives—and, devastatingly, some have never returned.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (11:01): This is an incredibly important motion. It's actually a motion I tabled in this House before we saw the revelations on the Four Corners episode in terms of alleged theft of water from the Murray-Darling Basin. And the reason why I originally tabled this motion was serious concern that the Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources was walking away from the commitment to the Murray-Darling Basin Plan. This is serious. And, since I tabled this motion in the House, we've seen even further concerns about this minister and his ability to deal with the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (10:06): I second the amendment. It is imperative that we deal with this issue right here, right now. Quite frankly, we've seen these very, very serious allegations, which have really dented confidence in the Murray-Darling plan, and there's nothing more important than this parliament coming together and backing this essential plan.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (19:40): Today I rise to acknowledge the enormous generosity of my local community during my recent winter appeal. Each winter my office acts as a drop-off point for donations of food, knitted beanies, blankets, scarves, toiletries and animal feed. The donations go to vulnerable members in our local community who are struggling during the cooler months.
Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (15:36): It was hard to follow the previous speaker's arguments in his speech, but what I think he was saying was this is not a big deal. Stealing water from the Murray-Darling that was meant to go to the environment, that the taxpayer paid for but that instead was allegedly stolen to go to irrigators is not a big deal! It's only a small issue! It's a side issue! Well, I have news for the previous speaker: this is a serious issue. On this side of the House, we take this seriously: ruining confidence in the Murray-Darling Basin Plan, a plan that the member for Watson worked so hard in delivering, working hard with stakeholders and with people all around this country to deliver a once-in-a-century agreement. It is very important for South Australia and very important for confidence. To say that alleged illegal activity is not a big thing is outrageous.