Letters to the editor
THANK YOU FOR PUTTING YOUR TRUST IN ME
I WANT to thank the people of Dawson for placing their trust in me once again to stand up for local jobs in the Dawson electorate.
For almost nine years now, I have represented communities from Mackay to Townsville, including Proserpine, the Whitsundays, Bowen and the Burdekin, in Federal Parliament as the Member for Dawson.
The support from so many people has been humbling and it is an honour to have served and to continue to serve our region, which is the powerhouse of the nation.
I also want to pay tribute to Labor candidate Belinda Hassan, who has been and still is a tireless worker in the Mackay community, and to acknowledge candidates Brendan Bunyan, Deb Lawson and Colin Thompson and Ann-Maree Ware, who each had great ideas for our region and nation, many of which I share and will champion in the Morrison Liberal National Government.
The result on the weekend both in North Queensland and across the state and nation tell us one key thing: no political party - at any level - can sacrifice local workers and local jobs on the altar of green activism and expect to be rewarded.
Labor played footsies with the extreme green movement at the expense of local jobs and has paid the price with their primary vote in Dawson barely scraping in at 20%, despite having a good community-minded candidate in Ms Hassan.
On the back of this result, the State Labor government needs to get on with the job of approving the Adani Carmichael mine and opening up the Galilee Basin.
They need to drop their ongoing attacks on the job-creating farming and fishing sectors.
I thank the people of Dawson once again for their solid support and I give this pledge: I will continue to be a tireless fighter for local jobs and local workers against the extreme green ideologues who seek to shut down and restrict mining, farming and fishing.
Federal Member for Dawson
IS THIS A SIGN OF THE TIMES WE LIVE IN
NOW the election is over, could those few who vandalised and stole roadside posters please take the trouble to dispose of them sustainably.
I put out 50 in Airlie-Cannonvale and around half were stolen.
Checking every day, I noticed at least as many again disappear from the other parties.
Please don't dump them in the bush.
To those who tore them up and threw them down stormwater drains - what were you thinking.
GLOBAL WARMING IS A SCIENTIFIC ISSUE
DID anyone else see the headline last week "British Government Declares A Climate Emergency”?
When I read it, it surprised me.
After all Prime Minister Theresa May is conservative isn't she? .... And then I realised the truth. Apart from this wide brown land most other countries see carbon pollution as a scientific issue and party politics just never comes into it. Consequently they are able to plan to deal with it over a longer period of time.
Also during the past month the United Kingdom had one week when they used no coal at all for electricity generation.
My memory of the old country is that it is not quite as sunny as Australia and yet on Monday, May 13, 25 per cent of the UK's total energy was produced through solar power!
With proper bipartisan planning many more jobs could be created in renewable infrastructure in mining areas.
'OLDER GENERATION' LETS YOUTH DOWN
DEAR Young People of Australia, on behalf of my generation, the "older generation”, I am truly sorry for letting you down...again.
We have put our self-interest and greed ahead of a climate safe future for you.
The result of the recent election has, no doubt, been a real kick in the guts for you, particularly for those who are not yet of voting age.
Despite the bushfires, the floods, the heatwaves, the coral bleaching, the unprecedented extinction level... we have returned a government of climate deniers whose only interest is to support the fossil fuel industry, particularly coal.
Yes, my generation has created this mess and now your generation will pay for this mess.
You are probably wondering why this has happened. I can only offer a few feeble excuses...
Many of us refuse to accept the reality of climate change.
Many of us are afraid of the changes required to reduce the impacts of climate change.
Many of us are too selfish to concern ourselves with your future.
Of course, the government continuously spins the mantra of jobs and a healthy economy.
Unfortunately, it is a well known fact that without a healthy environment, without a healthy climate, there can be no jobs and no healthy economy.
But please don't give up.
There are a number of us older people who do care and will continue to work towards a climate safe future for you.
And, most importantly, one day soon, you will be able to vote for your own future.
Use your vote wisely.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE ON ELECTION WIN
THE LNP (or South-East Liberals as I call them) struggle to win at the state level but credit where credit's due after the Coalition's shock win in the Federal election.
It was a result few people anticipated, including myself, and it would be remiss of me not to acknowledge Bob Brown and his mates for firing up regional communities all over the place - so much so, the lefties copped a hiding on May 18.
As regional Queensland's only independent MP, I now expect the Sunshine State's big anti-Labor result to be rewarded by the Prime Minister with an extra voice from Queensland in his Federal Cabinet... simple as that.
Some readers may recall how Senator Ian Macdonald was taken out of Cabinet several years ago to allow a newcomer from Tasmania to come in because of the Liberals' electoral performance on the Apple Isle - thereby ensuring equitable representation.
Well, now it's Queensland's turn and it will be very interesting to see who the PM goes with and what that means for Airlie Beach and surrounding communities I represent.
Personally, I would hope it's someone whose constituency covers ground north of the Tropic of Capricorn and when you look at the options available to Scott Morrison, one would think the re-elected Member for Capricornia, entering her third term, is well-placed.
For the record, Michelle Landry's seat includes the old coal mining town of Collinsville where the LNP has pledged funding for a feasibility study into a high efficiency, low emissions (HELE) coal-fired power station in that community. Yes, another study.
Since when did we need a study to work out that everyone, from families to farmers, are paying way too much for electricity?
Regardless, the challenge for the PM now is to reward Queensland for spearheading the Coalition's latest victory.
I'll be watching closely and I won't be alone.
Jason Costigan MP,
Member for Whitsunday
AUSTRALIA'S MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS REMAINS
MUCH needs to be done to address the crisis of mental health in this country.
With almost half of all Australians affected by mental illness during their lives, the ripple effect is felt by loved ones, families and the broader community.
The symptoms of mental illness are not always visible and many people suffer in isolation. Thankfully, there are thousands of worthy Australians striving to make a difference in this field, from advocacy, education and awareness through to prevention, treatment and searching for much needed cures.
The Australian Mental Health Prize acknowledges those who are doing innovative work in this area.
Acknowledging those who work or volunteer in the industry is an important part of the process to destigmatise mental illness.
The prize was established in 2016 by UNSW Sydney through its School of Psychiatry, Australia's pre-eminent psychiatric research department.
It recognises Australians who have made outstanding contributions to either the promotion of mental health, or the prevention or treatment of mental illness.
Nominations are now open and we are eager for nominees from across the country.
Please consider those in your local community who deserve to be recognised.
More information and nomination forms can be obtained from australian mentalhealthprize.org.au
Entries close on August
30. For those who are living with the burden of mental illness every day, thank you for your support.
Australian Mental Health
Prize Advisory Group chair