Bronwyn Bishop speaks at Seniors Forums in Hamilton and Maryborough
The Hon Bronwyn Bishop, Shadow Minister for Seniors and a former Howard Government Minister, has visited Wannon to speak at two very successful Seniors Forums.
Ms Bishop stated that her 'mission statement' was to make it as unacceptable in our society to be 'ageist' as it is to be 'sexist' or 'racist', and that seniors have much wisdom and knowledge to contribute to our community. She is a strong advocate of seniors remaining in the work force for as long as they wish and also noted that volunteering is the mortar that holds communities together.
Those attending the forums were impressed by her knowledge and passion for her role as an advocate for seniors issues - all while being a senior Australian herself!
Ms Bishop noted that 40 per cent of the population is over the age of 50 and that means they have a significant voice in society. She encouraged all seniors to use that voice to stand up and make their concerns heard.
Questions from the audience about the impact of the Carbon Tax, pensions and veterans support were just some of the issues brought to Ms Bishop's attention.
At the Maryborough Forum, we were fortunate to also have additional guest speakers; Sandra Wright, Damian Hendrickson and Kelvin Noonan, who made a valuable contribution with information regarding community services for seniors, carers services and respite and legal services.
Pensioners in aged care hit by Carbon Tax clawback
Pensioners who reside in aged care facilities across Wannon have received letters from the Department of Health and Ageing advising them that the Gillard Government is increasing their fees in an attempt to claw back the costs incurred from the Carbon Tax.
Not content on allowing the Carbon Tax to hit our households, farms, businesses, schools and hospitals, this fee hike is a compulsory carbon tax hit by the Gillard Government on our aged care pensioners. Sadly, they have been given absolutely no say in the matter and no prior warning to enable them to prepare for the increase.
The rise in the daily nursing home rate is the last straw for local resident Judy Foley and her 89 year old blind mother, Phyllis Cameron. Mrs Cameron noted that "If I had my eyesight, I'd fix up that Julia Gillard." Her comments clearly express the anger many aged care residents are feeling over this Gillard Government money grab.
The letter does not even mention the fee increase is due to the Carbon Price, let alone the Carbon Tax. It confirms that the tax is now so unpopular the Gillard Government dare not mention its name in any form.
Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Regional and Indigenous Health tours Wannon
Visiting Tyrendarra Indigenous Protected Area, a traditional meeting place of the Gunditjmara people, along with indigenous communities from Wannon.
It was great to have my colleague Dr Andrew Laming, Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Health Services and Indigenous Health, visit Wannon earlier this month to gain a greater understanding of the challenges facing local indigenous communities.
A full afternoon was organised for Dr Laming by the Healthy for Life Coordinator at Gunditjmara, Ms Annie Bertram, including a community lunch hosted by the Winda Mara Aboriginal Corporation with local Elders and community members from the south west.
Opportunities arose during lunch for discussion on matters of concern around Indigenous health including management of chronic disease, accessing health services and mental health concerns.
Following lunch, Dr Laming and I were taken on a tour of the Indigenous Protected Area at Tyrendarra and the mission site at Lake Condah.
Fun4Kids Festival a tourism winner for Warrnambool
Building activities in the woodwork tent with my daughter Eleanor.
The Fun4Kids Festival was on again in Warrnambool this winter school holidays providing plenty of activities for families.
The Festival provides a huge tourism boost for Warrnambool during winter. Many local accommodation providers, retailers and restaurants reported a very busy school holiday period, with some booked out for this time.
Fun4Kids has grown into a huge eight day event and is attracting not just local families but people from Melbourne and further afield as well. One of the best aspects of the festival is the atmosphere created by hundreds of very happy families and children visiting the region.
This year the festival experienced its first ever capacity attendance with 4,300 tickets sold in one day. In total 25,500 people attended over the eight days which is wonderful news for Warrnambool and for parents looking to keep children entertained during the winter holidays!
Timber manufacturing in Wannon
Examining finished timber products with business owners Timothy and Di Goodall.
During a recent visit to Warrnambool Timber Industries the issue of excessive red tape was once again a topic of discussion.
Managing Director Timothy Goodall conducted a tour and explained the timber production process from beginning to end. He also highlighted that their business provides employment for 20 people.
Small businesses wanting to expand are facing huge bureaucratic difficulties, with many businesses finding it too difficult to be worth their while. This is a serious productivity issue which the Coalition Deregulation Committee, chaired by Senator Arthur Sinodinos, is closely examining. The Coalition is currently developing policies which will cut the red and green tape burden that stifles so many small businesses.
Tim explained how he has been wanting to expand the business but has encountered numerous issues with red and green tape. This is not the first time that I have heard of small businesses wanting to expand facing difficulty and the Coalition is investigating ways in which we can help ease the burden of red and green tape in the future.
The 'Know Your Own Skin' campaign
During the last parliamentary sitting session I had my skin checked, along with other Members of Parliament, as part of the Know Your Own Skin campaign.
The Know Your Own Skin campaign has been developed by leading experts to encourage people to check their skin for sun damage at the start of each season and to ask their local GP for a skin check.
Simple skin checks can help detect changes in skin, helping to save lives. Two in three Australians are diagnosed with skin cancer before the age of 70. However, across Australia, two in three people failed to get their skin checked during the last 12 months.
To make self skin checking simple and easy, an interactive free iPhone app has been developed. The app – available at www.knowyourownskin.com – contains:
• eight simple steps to check your own skin;
• what to look for (beyond just moles);
• an interactive photo bank;
• reminder service to track changes that may occur over time.
All Australians are at risk of developing sun damage related skin conditions, due to our past sunbathing habits and the inevitable exposure we all get to the sun’s UV rays.
It is a concern that so few people in Wannon have had their skin checked so I am encouraging people to undertake a regular self-skin check using the free tools that you can find at www.knowyourownskin.com. People should also visit their doctor for a skin check as part of a regular medical check-up.
Local Sporting Champions Grants open
Local Sporting Champions grants are designed to provide financial support for young athletes participating in state or national level sporting competitions.
Under the initiative successful individuals will receive $500 and successful team applicants will receive $3,000 to contribute to the cost of travel, accommodation, uniforms or equipment when competing.
The program is available for athletes, coaches and officials aged between 12 and 18 years (inclusive), travelling more than 250km, return, to participate in a national sporting organisation-endorsed state, national or international level sporting competitions, or state or national school sport competitions.
If you have to travel to Melbourne for sport, or even to Geelong or Ballarat, you may be eligible for the local sporting champions grant.
Young people can apply for funding support at any time throughout the year and applications will be available on-line from the ASC website www.ausport.gov.au/champions.
Applications for Round 2 of the Local Sporting Champions grants are now open. Go online to the ASC website for further information and application forms, or contact my electorate office on 1300 131 692.
WANNON ROADS FORUM - 6 AUGUST 2012
6:00 - 7:30pm
The Carmichael Room
City Memorial Bowls Club, Warrnambool
The Hon Warren Truss MP, Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Transport and Leader of The Nationals will be guest speaker.
SHEEPVENTION - 6-7 AUGUST 2012
Liberal Party Stand - site number 77
The Hon Warren Truss MP will be in attendance on Monday afternoon.
JOHN ALEXANDER JUNIOR TENNIS CLINICS
31 AUGUST 2012
Hamilton Lawn Tennis Club - morning session, please contact Brett Johnstone for further details on 0437 700 405.
Warrnambool Lawn Tennis Club 4:00 - 5:00pm, contact Lauren Higgins for further details on 0438 627 467.
For further details about any of these events please contact my office on 1300 131 692.
Around Wannon - July 2012
Pictured clockwise from top left: Talking about dinosaurs with (L-R) Rorie Miller 4, Chloe Madden 4, Haylee Dalton 3, Olivia Agnew 3 and Claire Wade 4 from the Warrnambool 3 year old Kindergarten; meeting with the Hamilton Stroke Support Group; the Rotary Club of Warrnambool East Change Over Dinner (L-R) Ray Welsford, Gordon McKinnon, Hazel McKinnon and incoming President Peter Reeve; with Uniting Church members who presented me with signed postcards calling for ISP's to block child sexual abuse websites; visiting the Greater Green Triangle University Department of Rural Health with Andrew Laming MP; visiting the Maryborough Flour Mill Museum antique sewing machine displays
with Bronwyn Bishop and museum owner Wayne McKail.