I welcome the opportunity to speak to the motion of the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads that is before this place today, a motion that recognises the indispensable role that local governments continue to play in responding to the interests and needs of the local communities they serve.
I want to join with my colleague the member for Gorton to also pay my respects and express my deep sympathy at the passing of my constituent and very good friend Charles Frederick Van Buren, very widely known to all of us who knew him as Freddie. Freddie was not just my constituent; he was a friend and a long-time member of the Australian Labor Party.


I would like to join my colleague the member for Cook in speaking to this motion on the violation of human rights in Iran. Iran is often, and is currently, in the international spotlight given the intense international pressure it continues to face over its nuclear enrichment program.

The disadvantages that continue to plague Australia’s Indigenous communities in the areas of health, education and employment opportunities speak of past injustices suffered by Indigenous communities as much as they highlight the work that still has to be done today in order to redress these ongoing disadvantages.

My grievance today relates to the war in Lebanon and the enormous human suffering that is caused when diplomacy and dialogue are sacrificed in favour of aggression. Today it is three weeks since a ceasefire was brokered under the auspices of United Nations Security Council resolution 1701, which called for a full cessation of hostilities in Lebanon.


As my electorate is home to the Melbourne airport, I have many constituents who work in the aviation industry and who are employees of Qantas and its subsidiary Jetstar. So today I want to speak about the current round of Jetstar AWA negotiations and the implications these will have for Jetstar workers and the wider aviation industry.