With only one parliamentary sitting week left for 2015, the Coalition Government is working very hard to address some of the key issues facing our communities.
One of these is mental health. Last week the Coalition Government released its response to the National Mental Health Commission’s Review of Mental Health Programme and Services. The response sets out a bold reform package that will put the individual needs of patients at the centre of our mental health system.
Interestingly the Review noted that there is significant spending on mental health. However too many Australians are falling through the cracks or are not receiving the full support they need.
The Government’s full response is available on the front page of the Department of Health website at www.health.gov.au
Another key issue that is unfortunately facing our communities now is terrorism. In the wake of the horrific Paris attacks, the Coalition Government last week announced that Australia will now use a new National Terrorism Threat Advisory System (NTTAS) to inform the public about the likelihood of an act of terrorism occurring in Australia.
This new system will ensure that people have the information they need to protect themselves, their friends and their communities.
More information on the new National Terrorism Threat Advisory System, including advice on the current level, is available at www.nationalsecurity.gov.au/threatlevel
Farmers have another week to apply for a share of $2.2 million in small grants to increase industry capacity and support the adoption of productive management practices.
These small grants will assist farmers, community groups and farming systems groups to access and share best practice in their businesses. This includes supporting the adoption of industry-wide best practice from the introduction of new management practices in cropping and livestock industries to the use of new technologies in dairy, aquaculture and fisheries.
I strongly encourage local farmers and community groups across my electorate to apply for a small grant under this Coalition Government initiative.
Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, the Hon Barnaby Joyce MP is keen to fund activities like field days, workshops, conferences, demonstration events, training and skill development activities that help develop innovative practices and more sustainable use of our natural resources within the broader agricultural community.
Grants of between $5,500 and $55,000 (GST inclusive) are available for such activities.
Applications for the National Landcare Programme Sustainable Agriculture Small Grants Round 2015-16 close at 2 pm AEDT Monday 7 December 2015.
For more information, including the grant guidelines, visit www.nrm.gov.au/agsmallgrants