Government new housing plan provides little new funding


Colleen Hartland reveals that of the $1.3 billion announced for social housing in the Napthine Government's new social housing framework, just $149 million is new spending. There is no investment in increasing the public housing stock.

Ms HARTLAND (Western Metropolitan)—My question is for the Minister for Housing. The government has now released the long-awaited social housing framework. After extensive consultation and years in development, it fails to provide a vision for the growth of social housing into the future, and it fails to provide a solution for the 34 000 people on the waiting list.

Government continues to hide costings of Green's firefighter bill


Colleen Hartland has again called for documents that show details of costings of the Greens proposed legislation that automatically provides WorkCover compensation to firefighters that contract cancer on the job. This information is crucial for testing whether cost claims are inflated by the government. The government again refused to provide the documents or the details required to interrogate their costings. What have they got to hide?

More delays from Government on firefighters bill


Colleen Hartland motioned the Legislative Council to, based on committee inquiry recommendations, change practices with respect to bills with disputed flow-on costs. These changes would allow the Fair Protection of Firefighters bill to make some progress through parliament. The Government voted against this and instead have chosen to further delay progress by sending the proposed changes to a procedures committee for review.

Stop the Tip: the West is not Melbourne's dumping ground


Speech: For the past 30 years I have been involved in campaigning to clean up the western suburbs in the face of hazardous, toxic and other waste. I was a founding member of the Hazardous Materials Action Group, which is more commonly known as HAZMAG. 

This week I put in my formal objection to the proposed expansion of Boral’s Western Landfill in Ravenhall. My personal objection was in addition to more than 4000 already received by the Melton City Council. 

It was just last week that I put in a formal objection to a proposed above-ground expansion of the Wests Road tip in Werribee. 

Fund river open space rejuvenation this budget


My adjournment matter today is for the Minister for Planning. Australia is one of the most urbanised countries in the world. More than 70 per cent of Victorians live in Melbourne. Open space is critically important to the livability of our suburbs and is highly valued by the community. Parks can improve physical and mental health, ecosystem services and urban biodiversity.

The Maribyrnong River provides an important green and open space for residents in the west. Surveys have found it is one of the most popular and most used parks in Moonee Valley. There are sections along the river that would benefit greatly from redevelopment, as they are in poor condition. Moonee Valley City Council has developed a Maribyrnong River master plan. This plan lays out an incredible vision for a healthy river that improves access through more open space and better facilities for outdoor activities.

Greens riase concerns about security measures for children in secure welfare services


Colleen Hartland's speech in parliament regarding security proceedures in secure welfare servcies. The Greens are deeply concerned about the lack of safeguards in use of strip searches and isolation. The Greens referred the bill for inquiry.

There is clearly a need to legally clarify security procedures at secure welfare facilities and to specifically prohibit certain actions in all of out-of-home care services. We need a legal basis on which practices and standards are kept and abuse can be identified. The past legislative omission was identified by the Victorian Ombudsman, after concerns were raised by a whistleblower about the treatment of children in secure welfare services.

Residents stand up for community; no tip expansion


For 30 years now I have been campaigning to clean up the Western Suburbs in the face of hazardous, toxic and other waste.

I was a founding member of the Hazardous Materials Action Group or HAZMAG.

This week I put in my formal objection to the proposed expansion of Boral’s Western Landfill in Ravenhall.

My personal objection was in addition to more than 4,000 already received by Melton Council.

And it was just last week that I put in a formal objection to a proposed above ground expansion of the Wests Road tip in Werribee. 

Victoria spends least on public and community housing


Colleen Hartland calls on the government to restore and increase funding to public and community housing after exposing recent cuts and that Victoira now spends the least per capita on social housing of any state or territory.

My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Housing. After examining the recently released Report on Government Services 2014, it is evident that under the Victorian coalition government social housing and the 34 000 people on public housing waiting lists have been left to languish.

Under the coalition government total real expenditure on social housing has dropped from $1.55 billion in 2010–11 to $673 million in 2012–13.

No clean up support for Morewell public housing residents


Collen Hartland questions Housing Minister over clean up support for Morwell public housing residents

My question is to the Minister for Housing, Ms Lovell. It relates to the major disaster in Morwell resulting from the month-long fire in the Hazelwood mine. Aside from the important concerns about the health impacts on residents, there are also important concerns regarding the material impact of the fly-ash that has blanketed many areas of Morwell. It is in people’s homes, cars and properties. In some cases it has caused damage to homes, and the clean-up costs may be beyond what many can afford, particularly those living in public housing. As there are several hundred Department of Human Services (DHS) houses in Morwell, what programs are in place to decontaminate and clean these houses?

Footscray Primary students shine on Ride2School day


Ride to School with Greens MP Colleen Hartland

Last week I joined the students and staff at Footscray Primary School for National Ride2School Day.

It was a wonderful morning, with the kids full of energy after their ride and wearing the most elaborate and wonderfully decorated helmets.

I congratulate Footscray Primary School on participating in this event. It shows that the school knows the value of active transport and the benefits it brings to the students. A special thanks to Chris Wilson, the health and physical education teacher, and well done to all the children for riding to school and in their amazingly decorated helmets. I was impressed with the skill and creativity demonstrated by the children and it was a pleasure to be part of the event. 

Greens work to secure human rights in the new Mental Health Act


Colleen Hartland - Speech in parliament regading the Mental Health Bill 2014

Forty-five per cent of Australians will experience mental ill health at some stage in their lives, and we need a mental health system that can support people with mental illness to live full and healthy lives. The Greens strongly welcome the introduction of a new act to govern the treatment of people with mental illness. The current act was developed in 1986 and is well out of date with respect to modern thinking on mental health. We are pleased to see the shift towards a human rights approach where mental health services are obliged to provide the least restrictive assessment and treatment and where patients receiving mental health services are involved in all decisions about their care. We see this bill as a step forward.

The Government's shame - aged, unsafe firetrucks a-ok for CFA volunteers


Colleen Hartland calls on the government to fund replacement of aged and unsafe firefighting trucks for CFA volunteers

Ms HARTLAND (Western Metropolitan)—My adjournment matter is for the Minister of Police and Emergency Services. I have received correspondence from Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria regarding funding shortfalls for the Country Fire Authority (CFA) fleet of 2200 fire trucks. It indicates that, despite the essential services it provides, the CFA’s current base funding does not provide for an annual allocation of funds to maintain the fleet of fire trucks. The CFA cannot guarantee that it has funds to replace fire trucks when they reach the end of their working life, despite the fact that every year it is inevitable that some trucks will need to be replaced.

Minister plays dumb over link between heatwaves and climate change


Colleen Hartland questions the Minister in parliament over his heatwave and climate change comments:

Ms HARTLAND (Western Metropolitan)—My question is for the Minister for Health. The minister has stated the importance of not confusing the response to individual occasions of heatwave with more 'esoteric' debates on climate change. The year 2013 was the hottest on record in Australia. The January heatwave was the hottest four-day period on record. The Bureau of Meteorology has said that there have been 21 days from 2001–14 which have has reached 45 degrees Celsius, compared with 13 days in the 44 years before that. CSIRO has stated that climate change is happening. Does the government reject these scientific findings and deny that heatwaves are becoming worse in Victoria as a result of climate change?

A huge thanks - Festival Season in the West


Greens MP Colleen Hartland, Festival SeasonSpeech in Parliament - Festival Season in the West:

"There have been many exciting festivals across the West, and I am pleased to have been able to make it to all of them, along with a team of volunteers joining me on my stalls.

Festivals are a fun and enjoyable way for residents to celebrate and get to know their local communities, especially as they change and grow. The festivals were a showcase of community groups and the flourishing music and artistic scene in the Western Suburbs. I always love witnessing the closing of streets to traffic and them being filled with people celebrating, and I very much enjoyed chatting with locals. Community members are always happy to see genuine community engagement by their MP.

Greens reject voluntary pre-commitment as designed to fail


Colleen Hartland - Speech in Parliament regarding the government legilsation on voluntary pre-committment on pokie machines.

The Greens will oppose the bill because it is completely useless. There is no basis, there is no evidence, that a non-binding, partial precommitment system on pokies will be effective in reducing losses amongst problem gamblers. The Victorian Competition and Efficiency Commission (VCEC) report titled Counting the Cost—Inquiry into the Costs of Problem Gambling released in October 2012 found that gambling addiction costs our state between $1.5 billion and $2.8 billion each year.

Hartland motions for review of heatwave management


Colleen Hartland - Speech in Parliament.

In light of the January 2014 heatwave that led to over 100 deaths across Victoria, Colleen Hartland has called for the government to take heatwaves more seriously. In parliamnet she motioned for a review of the government's heatwave planning, saying heatwaves deserve a whole of government emergency response, similar to that of bushfires.

Make it safe for Kingsville Primary kids


Ms HARTLAND (Western Metropolitan) Speech:

My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Planning on behalf of the Minister for Roads.

We all know that kids and trucks do not mix. I wholeheartedly support the community campaign by residents in the inner west and the Maribyrnong Truck Action Group to extend the truck curfews to include school crossing times on Somerville Road.

More than 2000 trucks travel Somerville Road every day. Kingsville Primary School and St Augustine’s Catholic Primary School are located on this road, and a number of kindergartens are less than 100 metres from the road. These huge numbers of diesel-spewing trucks are impacting the health of our children and posing significant safety concerns.

Thanks Midsumma Festival & GOWEST


Speech Ms HARTLAND —

Over the last few weeks I have had the privilege of attending a number of Midsumma Festival events in the western suburbs.

There have been a range of events, such as the launch of WEST AND PROUD, which documents the area’s gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (GLBTIQ) heritage and culture. The website is quite interesting. It showcases a number of short films about the history of queer life in the west as well as a historical timeline of significant milestones. The personal stories brought to life via film navigate broad territory, from coming out stories to gender transitioning, same-sex parenting and beyond. WEST AND PROUD is a joint venture between RMIT University social work students and Hobsons Bay City Council.

Health Minister denies link between record heatwaves and climate change


Colleen Hartland questioned the Minister for Health in parliament regarding providing funding for frontline agencies to respond to heatwaves. The Minister responded by indicating funding would not be provided and saying that heatwaves should not be confused with the esoteric debate about climate change.

Guarantee us that Fire Services Levy, in entirety, will be spent on fire services


Colleen Hartland - Speech in Parliament: My adjournment matter tonight is for the Minister for Police and Emergency Services. My adjournment matter relates to the fire services property levy. Before reform in 2012 the Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) received 75 per cent and the Country Fire Authority (CFA) received 77.5 per cent of annual estimated expenditure directly from insurance companies. State and local governments contributed the remaining amount. Insurance companies then recuperated these funds via the fire services levy on insured properties.

Werribee Secondary College in desperate need of repair


Colleen Hartland - Speech in Parliament. Along with Mr Pallas, the member for Tarneit in the other house, last week I attend a meeting at Werribee Secondary College to discuss the poor physical condition of the buildings and grounds. I understand from the school that the Minister for Education, Mr Dixon, Mr Elsbury and Mr Finn were invited; unfortunately none of them were able to attend.

I knew there were many problems with the school, but I was shocked at how bad the situation is. The school council outlined the situation for us. There is a substantial drain upon school maintenance funds, as the school has to divert funds from the current educational program, and there are potential safety, occupational health and safety and fire hazards. The urgent need for building works poses a significant risk to student and teacher safety as well as to the general community.

Greens vote against government cash grab from disability housing residents


Colleen Hartland - Speech in parliament.

I have decided that the best way for me to start my contribution tonight is to read in full a press statement from the Victorian Advocacy League for Individuals with Disability Inc. (VALID), dated 25 November. I attended this meeting of family members, carers and people from the sector, which was called by VALID on 11 November.

The press release is headed ‘Cash Grab an Insult’. It begins:

"A meeting of family members representing people residing in DHS-funded group homes has condemned the Minister for Disability Services and Reform, Mary Wooldridge,MP, for:

Greens call for independent inspector-general for emergency management


Colleen Hartland Speech in parliament - while supporting new emergency management governance arrangements, Colleen Hartland has called for the inspector-general for emergency management to be independent, so there is proper accountability in preparation, response and recovery from disasters and there is transparency about successes and shortfalls of governance arrangements. The Government voted against this reform.

Ms HARTLAND (Western Metropolitan)—I rise today to make a contribution to the debate on the Emergency Management Bill 2013. I would also like to start by recognising the amazing work of our firefighters, both career and volunteer, and the state emergency services and police for their dedication and the hard work they put in on the ground every day to protect those who find themselves in the midst of a disaster or an emergency. To say they do a fantastic job feels like an understatement, because I do not know whether I could manage to do the kind of work they do.

Hartland secures gov't support for expansion of public homebirth programs


Colleen Hartland motioned the Government to fund the start up costs of homebirth programs in next year's budget and provide state-wide guidelines to hospitals to implement the program. Based on the overwhelming evidence for the programs, the Government was forced to support the motion

Hansard transcript: Colleen Hartland — I move: That this house calls on the Minister for Health, Mr David Davis, MLC, to, as soon as feasible, take the necessary steps to expand public hospital homebirth services including—
(1) committing to fund start-up costs of homebirth programs to hospitals providing maternity services in the next state budget;
(2) developing statewide guidelines and information for health services implementing homebirth services;
(3) developing systems to prospectively collect costing data; and
(4) supporting further research into the safety of homebirth programs and research to compare clinical outcome data associated with low-risk births in different birth settings.

Planning Minister agrees to meet Moonee Valley CC on East-West


Today,Greens MP Colleen Hartland stood up in question time and called on Matthew Guy, the Minister for Planning, to meet with Moonee Valley City Council. The Minister has agreed to meet with Council.

Council has requested an urgent meeting with state Planning Minister Matthew Guy to discuss potential social, economic and environmental implications of the $8 billion project. Councillor Jim Cusack said the city would be faced with more cars, pollution and flyovers in its neighbourhoods.