Media | State News

State News - December 2021

Youth crime running rife across Queensland

16th December 2021

Repeat young criminals are running rife in Queensland with the latest Children’s Court statistics showing 10% of young criminals are responsible for almost half of all youth crime and one in five supervised justice orders were breached in the past year.

Shadow Attorney-General Tim Nicholls said the youth crime crisis was affecting Queenslanders every day.

“The numbers speak for themselves,” he said.

“The State Government is losing control of youth crime in Queensland.”

The annual report shows an increase in kids before the courts with charges for motor vehicle theft up 62.5%, acts intended to cause harm up 56%, and unlawful entry with intent up 37%.

Alarmingly, the report also revealed almost 260 girls aged 14 years and under were sexually assaulted by a child offender.

Mr Nicholls said the State Government must get serious about cracking down on youth crime.

“We have repeatedly called on the State Government to restore breach of bail as an offence for young offenders,” he said.

“If breach of bail was an offence and a young offender broke any one of their bail conditions, police would be able to intervene early.

“The offender would be back in the system rather than allowed on the street to offend again.”

“Labor has failed to get youth crime under control, failed to protect our community and failed to do right by our children and this latest report proves it,” he said.

“Repeat offenders should not be allowed to put the safety of Queenslanders at risk.

“It’s time the government started listening to Queenslanders and strengthened our laws.”

Statement - Qld Health Crisi

16th December 2021

The annual reports tabled by each Hospital and Health Service across Queensland confirm our health system is in serious decline.

Queensland Health is in crisis and these reports prove it.

This year ambulance ramping hit levels never seen before.

Nearly half of all ambulances arriving at Queensland hospitals will wait longer than 30 minutes to offload their patient.

Our emergency departments are overcrowded and over stretched.

At some hospitals nearly half of all patients aren’t seen within the clinically recommended timeframe.

57,000 Queenslanders are waiting for elective surgery. Nearly 1 in 10 people will not have their surgery in the clinically recommended time.

245,000 Queenslanders, or 1 in 20 people, are waiting for the first appointment with their specialist. Some will wait more than a year.

These are the facts.

As a nurse and former hospital administrator, I know how stressful it is for our exhausted frontline staff who aren’t getting the support they need.

Our dedicated doctors, nurses and paramedics are heroes holding our hospitals together during the Queensland Health Crisis.

Their dedication and professionalism are first class but unfortunately, they are being badly let down by a State Government that is losing control of the health system it’s meant to be running.

All Queenslanders deserve a world class health system no matter where they live.

The government needs to stop blaming everyone else and start fixing the health system.

Government refuses to listen to Auditor-General's call for transparency

16th December 2021

The State Government has been caught red-handed keeping the truth from Queenslanders about how it is using billions of dollars of taxpayers’ money.

In a damning report, the Auditor-General has demanded transparency from the State Government about its controversial $8 billion Future Fund.

The fund is propped up by the mysterious re-valuation of the Titles Office which was exposed during budget week as being three times the value of the larger New South Wales office.

In his report Establishing the Queensland Future Fund, the Auditor-General asked the Treasurer to start providing financial statements so number crunchers can run a genuine audit of this fund on behalf of taxpayers.

Unbelievably, the Treasurer is refusing to listen and won’t open the books.

Shadow Treasurer David Janetzki says that the Treasurer's unwillingness to tell Queenslanders what he's doing with their money demonstrates a complete lack of accountability.

“What is Cameron Dick trying to hide from taxpayers?” Mr Janetzki said.

“When the Treasurer handed down his budget, he couldn’t say how the Titles Office was valued and now he won’t say how it’s performing. Why?

“The Auditor-General’s report again highlights why Queensland needs a Parliamentary Budget Office to independently assess and report on how budget decisions are performing.”

“The reality is, this means that your kids' local cricket club does more auditing than an $8 billion government controlled fund."

"The LNP has already committed to greater transparency in the budget process through the creation of a Parliamentary Budget Office and a reformed estimates process."

“This third-term Labor government is giving up on integrity, accountability and honesty.”

“Queenslanders deserve better.”

Joint statement: Leader of the Opposition David Crisafulli and Shadow Minister for Health Ros Bates

9th December 2021

The State Government must start listening because the Queensland Health Crisis is real.

The Australian Medical Association is saying it.

The LNP is saying it.

Doctors are saying it.

Nurses are saying it.

Paramedics are saying it.

Patients are saying it.

The unions are saying it.

Queenslanders are saying it.

The AMAQ has put solutions on the table to fix the Queensland Health Crisis.

These solutions mirror what the LNP has put forward.

This crisis is the result of half a decade of inaction by this State Government.

The time has come to listen and fix the Queensland Health Crisis.

Auditor-General exposes dam-ing report into dam safety

9th December 2021

Queensland’s Auditor-General has exposed major flaws with the State Government's management of dams and how it has failed to meet compliance and safety issues.

The report tabled in State Parliament, is scathing of the State Government’s approach to dam management and confirms what the Opposition has been raising for years.

It exposes significant gaps in information gathering, systems, monitoring and enforcement practices that limit the government's effectiveness as a regulator.

The report recommends changes to the government’s regulatory framework and approach to dam safety.

Shadow Minister for Water and the Construction of Dams Deb Frecklington slammed the findings and said it showed how the government was losing control of its core responsibilities.

“These governance issues identified by the Auditor General show the government is gambling with Queenslanders’ safety and the future of water security,” Ms Frecklington said.

“At a time when Queensland is experiencing rapid population growth, the government should be focused on building new dams to meet future demand.

“Instead, this report shows very clearly the government is failing to maintain the few dams they currently have.

“What hope do we have for future water security when the Premier and her Water Minister can’t even manage our current water assets, let alone plan to build more.

“The fish rots from the head, and these failings must be addressed by the Premier and her Minister.”

Ms Frecklington said the report comes as Wide Bay locals desperately await the release of a detailed business case into the future of Paradise Dam, which had its capacity reduced due to alleged safety concerns.

Bundy farmers take dam fight to Brisbane

Bundy farmers take dam fight to Brisbane

6th December 2021

Bundaberg farmers have gone to new heights in an attempt to be heard by the State Government about the future of Paradise Dam.

A giant billboard organised by Bundaberg Fruit and Vegetable Growers has gone up in the Deputy Premier’s electorate, on the Bruce Highway North of Brisbane.

It comes as Shadow Water Minister Deb Frecklington reignites calls for the State Government to release their detailed business case into the future of Paradise Dam.

Ms Frecklington said the best Christmas present the State Government can give Wide Bay locals is confidence the full wall height will be restored.

“Labor has played politics with Paradise Dam from the onset,” Ms Frecklington said.

“The region’s growers and water users continue to be caught in the middle of this debacle.

“Engineering experts have said the wall can be restored.

“The State Government needs to be upfront with the people of Bundaberg.

“Will the State Government take the engineering advice, or find another excuse to tear the wall down?

“I again call on Labor’s Water Minister and Labor’s Member for Bundaberg to stand up for the people they claim to represent.

“We’ve already seen precious water from the recent rain washed out to sea, in a cruel blow for locals at a time when water has never been this vital.”

Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett is concerned the year is almost over and Wide Bay locals are still in the dark over the Future Options Paper for Paradise Dam.

“We need the report released to the public today,” Mr Bennett said.

“That doesn’t mean handing it over to a government pen-pusher and putting it in the desk for another 12 months.

“That means giving it to our farmers, to the people who need to make decisions about putting crops in the ground.

“It’s high time the Palaszczuk Government shows regional producers how much they value the food on their plates.”

Statement - Specialist Outpatient Services

6th December 2021

Today the Auditor-General’s report into improving access to specialist outpatient services will be released.

The LNP is urging the State Government to genuinely consider its findings and take real action to fix the crisis, rather than shirk the blame.

Latest data shows targeted funding and cultural change is needed in Queensland Health.

Opposition Leader David Crisafulli said despite having seven years to fix the problem, the issue has only worsened under this State Government.

“The waitlist to see a specialist has grown to a staggering 245,000 Queenslanders,” Mr Crisafulli said.

“These Queenslanders are waiting at the back of the queue. They haven’t even seen the doctor yet.

“This can’t be another Auditor-General’s report that gets swept aside.

“At a time when Queensland Heath is in crisis, every suggestion to improve it must be taken on board.”

The specialist outpatient waiting list has grown by more than 15,000 in the last quarter.

“The growth in the waiting list for the waiting list shows the government is losing control of its hospital system even before Covid starts spreading through our community.

“Most concerning is a rise of 7 per cent in the last quarter.

“Queenslanders waiting desperately to see a specialist deserve better from this State Government.

"These are your loved ones in pain, waiting desperately just for an appointment, let alone their surgery.

"As a nurse and former hospital administrator, I know our frontline staff are also crying out for help."

The LNP has put solutions on the table including:

  1. Data Transparency: Real-time data so patients and health professionals can help make decisions around resourcing and performance.
  2. Triaging Improvements: Better resourcing for triaging in emergency departments to ensure the service is fit for purpose.
  3. Targeted funding: Investing in more beds instead of fudging the figures by counting chairs in the hospital bed tally.
  4. Empowering Frontline Staff: Allowing doctors, nurses and paramedics the power to determine resources in their hospitals, using local expertise.

The LNP will continue to put our positive solutions on the table until all Queenslandes have a health system they can depend on.