VOTE PLEDGE ON REPUBLIC
A FEDERAL Labor Government would take the first real steps to have an Australian Head of State in our country, by letting the people decide.
That’s the pledge Opposition leader Bill Shorten made at Labor’s State Conference, at the weekend in Townsville.
“We will put a simple yes or no question to the Australian people: Do you support an Australian Republic with an Australian head of state, yes or no,” Mr Shorten said.
“This does not change the respect for the Queen for her service, but we are not Elizabethans, we are Australians.”
ALP’s state conference covered a lengthy agenda at the Townsville Entertainment Centre.
Labor MP for Herbert Cathy O’Toole introduced Mr Shorten and said he knew and was committed to demonstrating that regional, rural and remote communities in Queensland needed to be acknowledged and the people needed to know they mattered.
“It can be very challenging to get the message across about the challenges we face here in the northern part of Queensland, but I can tell you this; Bill’s door is always open,” she said.
Mr Shorten said the Labor Party was listening to the Townsville community about what mattered to them and the Party was acting upon the ideas.
“Townsville is a go- ahead community, it just needs a little bit of backing. That’s why we led the way on a new world- class stadium Townsville,” he said.
“We need the best facilities and the best infrastructure to showcase our home, and bring people here.
Mr Shorten’s speech outlined the ALP’s commitment to jobs and its commitment to boost tourism, making North Queensland the number one destination all the while tackling inequality.
He said inequality was much more than just a gap between the rich and the poor, and that it was about inequality in our system.
“Inequality affects us all. We want one set of rules in this country: clear, simple and fair,” he said.
“We in the Labor Party have always been on the side of fairness, of progress, of not leaving people behind.”
Mr Shorten also for an- nounced that a Shorten Labor Government would assign $ 1 billion in funding specifically to work for tourism infrastructure in Northern Australia.
“In the last two years, the Federal LNP’s $ 5 billion Northern Australian infrastructure fund has stayed idle. It has done nothing,” he said.
“This is only the beginning, not the end, for our plans for tourism and jobs in Queensland and the North.
“We need to back Annastacia Palaszczuk and we are going to do that in Canberra,” he said.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said she was proud to stand before the crowd as a Labor Premier of a proud Labor Government.
“My Government will never forget that one in five Queenslanders is a North Queenslander, and it is vital that this region is heard and respected,” she said.
Ms Palaszczuk said she would return to Townsville in less than three weeks to turn the sod for the official start of construction on the Townsville Stadium.
BILL SHORTEN ECONOMIC BOOST: Australian Manufacturing Workers Union state secretary Rohan Webb at the ALP state conference held in Townsville.