Point to Point Transport (Taxi and Hire Vehicles) Bill 2016

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I make a contribution to the debate on the Point to Point Transport (Taxis and Hire Vehicles) Bill 2016, primarily on behalf of the taxi operators and drivers in my electorate of the Blue Mountains. The bill does a number of things, including: establishing a new regulatory framework for the point to point transport industry; establishing a new standalone regulator; introducing measures to ensure compliance by ridesharing services and other emerging business models; and providing a mechanism for industry assistance funded by a temporary levy on service providers, although the bill does not set the quantum of any assistance.

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Woodford Station Accessbility

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We are here today to debate easy access at railway stations, in particular at Woodford in my electorate of Blue Mountains. I have spoken on this issue a number of times in the past 12 months, and I am thrilled to acknowledge the achievement of activists from my electorate—who are in the gallery today—in gathering well over 10,000 signatures for their petition. They have brought another 85 signatures with them today. 

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Winmalee High School Drama Production

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On 17 October 2013 the Blue Mountains was ravaged by some of the worst bushfires ever experienced. Winmalee, Springwood, Yellow Rock and Mount Victoria were all seriously impacted, with the loss of over 200 homes. Local schools played an important role in keeping students safe as the emergency unfolded in the early afternoon. I had the very great pleasure of being a special guest recently at Winmalee High School's performance of Straw Hats, Thongs and Toothbrushes—Stories of Accelerated Intimacy After the 2013 BM Fires.

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Condolence for John Kaye

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I make a brief contribution to this condolence motion. This afternoon we have heard some absolutely fabulous memories recounted and some beautiful stories shared. I also acknowledge the late and great Dr John Kaye, an activist extraordinaire and Greens member of the Legislative Council. I believe we were fellow travellers on the road to social justice. Many people in my community, many of my TAFE teaching colleagues from the Blue Mountains and beyond, my union comrades, and all those who came in contact with John appreciate my speaking on their behalf today. 

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WestConnex

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I support the motion as amended by the member for Strathfield. The M4 is a road that is central to the lives of so many of our constituents. The WestConnex project is large and costly. It will have wideranging impacts throughout Sydney—and not all of them are positive. The Government set up the Sydney Motorway Corporation as a so-called "private company" so that it can escape the scrutiny of the Opposition and of journalists. Ordinary members of the public cannot lodge freedom of information requests and see for themselves what this tricky Government is up to.

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Reconciliation Week

[Download PDF] This week we celebrate Reconciliation Week.

In the Blue Mountains we have a very active and passionate Reconciliation Movement led by community groups including the Mountains Outreach Community Services (MOCS) and Blue Mountains Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation (BM ANTAR).

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National Parks and Wildlife Amendment (Adjustment of Areas) Bill

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I contribute to this debate on the National Parks and Wildlife Amendment (Adjustment of Areas) Bill 2016. It gives me great pleasure to stand in this place and speak about New South Wales national parks because our national parks are a standing legacy of the environmental record of Labor in New South Wales. New South Wales would be unrecognisable today without the huge estate of national parks gifted to the people of this State by former Labor governments and former Minister for the Environment Bob Debus.

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Tribute to Jenna Jones

[Download PDF] I recognise 14-year-old Jenna Jones of Faulconbridge in the Blue Mountains, who recently won six gold and three silver medals at the Australian Age Swimming Championships. She also broke nine Australian and 10 State swimming records at the championships. Jenna is now on Swimming Australia's Road to Rio Team for the 2016 Paralympics. 

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International Nurses Day

[Download PDF] I endorse the comments of the member for Port  Stephens and the member for Myall Lakes , and add my voice to the discussion on this matter of public importance, which is the annual celebration of International Nurses Day. 

We know that the work of nurses in our society is vital, whether it is emergency ward nursing staff caring for people in acute need, midwifery nurses preparing expectant mums to deliver newborn babies, or respite and palliative care nurses who are looking after people with long-term and often terminal illnesses. 

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Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) 2016

[Download PDF] I support the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Amendment (Review) Bill 2016. I support this bill in essence, but not those amendments proposed to section 101J of the Coroner's Act relating to the Domestic Violence Death Review Team [DVDRT]. I understand that this bill is based upon statutory reviews. It contains a suite of proposed changes that are in the main welcome. I thank all those who work at the coalface in providing services around domestic violence matters: the police; the paramedics; the refuges and women's health services; the extraordinary case workers, who hear the most awful stories; community and women's legal centres; Aboriginal family violence prevention legal services; domestic violence court assistance schemes; family support services; neighbourhood centres and many others. As has been stated already, domestic and family violence is an all too common crime. Its prevalence is high.

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