Mr PEARSON (Essendon) — I am delighted to stand in this place not only as a member of the Andrews Labor government, but a member of the Labor movement. Deputy Speaker, in four years we have accomplished so much. We sought to come here and not merely stop the coalition from trashing the state and the economy, we came here to build a better society on behalf of the Labor movement.
We have invested in our schools and brought back funding to support the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children. We are investing in building the critical infrastructure that is required to ensure that regardless of where people live they can take a secure job in the CBD if they choose to do so. We will have none of the nonsense from those opposite that seek to lock out and exclude people from the new economy jobs based upon their parents’ bank balance or their postcode.
We are investing in rebuilding public housing estates so that public housing tenants can live in modern, 21st-century, energy efficient housing. Not long after I was first elected a little boy in my community nearly lost his finger because an open window fell on his hand in the walk-up flats at Flemington. Why should this be allowed to happen, and why would the Liberals and the Greens oppose us in seeking to rebuild these estates?
We are investing in employment programs to ensure that members of our African-Australian communities have the opportunity to get a job. Rather than demonising these communities we are working with their community leaders and young people to ensure that they have the very best opportunities in life. We are making social procurement an important component of our major projects. This is not a tick-and-flick exercise; this is an opportunity to ensure that the economic value generated from these major projects is shared across the broader economy.
I came to this place to get things done on behalf of my community and as a member of the Labor movement. Regardless of the outcome of the election in November the movement will continue because we remain steadfast and resolute in ensuring that working people have the opportunity to lead dignified and meaningful lives.