Parliament wrap-up: August 4, 2023

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A big week at Parliament, talking Housing, the Murray Darling and mental health.

A huge and hectic week at Parliament, but also a really crucial one for bringing up issues that are so important to the lives of all Victorians

Housing: There was a lot about housing this week, and it’s clear the public and our homelessness workers want change. I was fortunate enough to meet Lucy (Barwon & Sth West Homelessness Network) and Jose (Meli) to see and hear more about the collective campaign calling on the Government for more public housing.

The 6000 origami houses on the steps of parliament symbolise just how much housing we need each year to start turning around this housing crisis. We stepped up our pressure on the Labor Government to build more genuinely public housing.

Water: I moved a motion calling on the Labor Government to take urgent action to return more environmental water to the Murray-Darling.

A scathing Environment Victoria report released this week revealed the extent of Victorian Government negligence. The Murray-Darling Basin is at risk of environmental collapse yet this Victorian Government is refusing to take the urgent action needed to ensure its survival.

As well as actively blocking buy-backs and other environmental measures that would return real water to the Murray, the State Govt has just been granted a two-year extension on water recovery targets it has failed to meet. Check out the report if you want to find out more.

We will continue to hold this Government to account on this issue.

Mental health: I also spoke in the chamber this week about the direct impacts of poverty and housing on mental health, and the need for more compassionate and humane and health-led responses for people facing mental health challenges.

There are positive steps being taken to address the systemic failings of our mental health responses as a state and a nation, but we’ve got a long way to go to address the root causes of poor mental health.

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