Road trips flesh out is­sues

Kalgoorlie Miner - - NEWS - Joanna De­la­lande

Petrol prices and aged care ac­com­mo­da­tion have emerged as ma­jor con­cerns for re­gional West Aus­tralians, and boost­ing skilled mi­gra­tion re­mains a sig­nif­i­cant talk­ing point for re­gional busi­nesses.

These is­sues have been re­layed to The Na­tion­als’ WA Se­nate can­di­date Nick Fardell dur­ing a se­ries of trips through­out re­gional WA.

Mr Fardell said his trip, dubbed the “world’s longest job in­ter­view” on so­cial me­dia, had shown him skilled re­gional mi­gra­tion was front of mind for re­gional busi­nesses.

“That’s our pol­icy — that we need to in­crease skilled re­gional mi­gra­tion in favour of fly-in, fly­out work to fill the em­ploy­ment gaps in the re­gions,” he said.

Mr Fardell said aged care ac­com­mo­da­tion was also a ma­jor con­cern in re­gional ar­eas, with ris­ing fears from com­mu­ni­ties their loved ones would not be able to ac­cess ser­vices close to home and would be forced to move to Perth or larger re­gional cen­tres.

“Re­tirees are wor­ried they’re not get­ting their fair share from their su­per­an­nu­a­tion — they’re con­cerned the Govern­ment is not putting money back into re­gional and re­mote aged care ac­com­mo­da­tion,” he said.

The con­cerns come on the back of a royal com­mis­sion into aged care qual­ity and safety, which will look in part at fu­ture chal­lenges and op­por­tu­ni­ties to de­liver ac­ces­si­ble, af­ford­able and high-qual­ity aged care ser­vices for peo­ple in re­mote, ru­ral and re­gional ar­eas.

Mr Fardell said strate­gies to tackle youth is­sues, specif­i­cally drug use, sui­cide and youth in the jus­tice sys­tem, were not work­ing in the re­gions and tac­tics needed to change.

“I don’t re­ally see any­thing hap­pen­ing from the Fed­eral Gov­ern- ment on these is­sues,” he said.

“We need more money put back into PCYCs, we need drug pro­grams spon­sored di­rectly by the Fed­eral Govern­ment.

“There should be more in­volve­ment from the Com­mon­wealth in that space, not just the State Govern­ment.”

He added re­gional peo­ple were “re­ally hurt­ing” from el­e­vated petrol prices.

“So many peo­ple are work­ing out that we pay a whole lot of tax on petrol and on top of that there’s the goods and ser­vices tax,” he said.

“The Fed­eral Govern­ment has got to stop putting their hands in peo­ple’s pock­ets twice.”

Pic­ture: Kelsey Reid

Na­tion­als Se­nate can­di­date Nick Fardell.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.