I was very disappointed to learn that as part of the Australian Electoral Commission’s (AEC) current review of voter services for the next Federal election, it is proposed that almost 20% of polling places in the Parkes Electorate will be abolished.
The AEC have proposed the abolition of polling places at Albert, Baan Baa, Curban, Edgeroi, Emmagool, Enngonia, Euabalong, Euchareena, Goolma, Gravesend, Gurley, Leadville, Lue, Montefiores, Murrin Bridge, Nevertire, Tommelah, Ulan, Weilmoringle and Wollar.
The Parkes Electorate covers more than 256,000 square kilometres of New South Wales (NSW). As the Federal Member for this electorate, I fully understand the difficulties with servicing such a large rural and regional area.
As many residents of my electorate know, the polling places proposed for abolition are situated in some of the smaller communities situated across one third of Western NSW. For the people who live in these small communities, their ability to exercise their democratic rights is just as important as for those in the larger towns in my electorate.
The abolishment of polling places within regional areas, particularly in these smaller communities, does disenfranchise and adversely affect voters in these parts of my electorate.
Because of this, I have submitted my concerns to the AEC and asked that they reconsider their proposal.
If you are a resident of the smaller communities listed above and would like to have your say on the AEC’s proposal, please send me your comments via email to email@example.com.
The Commonwealth, New South Wales (NSW) and Victorian Governments signed the first agreements for the rollout of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in Canberra last week.
The historic signings confirmed the joint commitment of the Commonwealth, NSW and Victorian Governments to people with disability, their families and carers.
Under the NSW agreement, the towns in the Parkes Electorate that are in the Hunter and New England Health District will see the rollout take place in 2016-2017. For the Western NSW towns in the Parkes Electorate, the rollout is scheduled to take place in 2017-2018.
Further information about the NDIS rollout can be found at http://www.ndis.gov.au/about-us/our-sites/nsw.
September is dementia awareness month with the theme this year being Creating a Dementia- Friendly Nation.
The goal of the month is to encourage Australians to become dementia-aware. This includes having a better understanding of what it is like for a person to live with dementia and ultimately be encouraged to create communities where people with dementia are supported to live a high quality of life with meaning, purpose and value.
Dementia describes a collection of symptoms that are caused by disorders affecting the brain. It affects a person’s thinking, behaviour and the ability to perform everyday tasks.
Dementia not only affects the life of the person diagnosed with the disorder but it also affects the lives of the family and friends around them.
I strongly encourage everyone to become more dementia aware this month by visiting https://nsw.fightdementia.org.au/.