African-Australian Community

Mr PEARSON — Many times I have risen in this place to place on the record my thanks for the magnificent contribution the African-Australian communities make every single day in my electorate. There have been many comments over the course of the summer recess about the alleged offences of representatives from these communities. While I cannot comment on specific cases, all I can ask of all of us is that we not condemn an entire continent for the actions of a few. All I can do as a member of this place is pledge that every day I will work to ensure that African-Australian children start school on an equal footing to their peers; that if they live in public housing, it is safe, clean and modern housing; that they go to the very best state schools; that they have the opportunity to study at university or TAFE; and that at the end of this journey there is a well-paying and secure job waiting for them. Every day I am working to ensure that African-Australians have the opportunity for meaningful economic and political participation in Australia. How many of you are prepared to join me in this noble cause?

I know that those opposite have no interest, because if they form government after the next state election, they will cut initiatives like the education maintenance allowance, they will cut the school breakfast clubs program, they will cut schools, they will cut TAFE.