The Country Women's Association (CWA) of NSW has released its policy priorities ahead of the NSW state election, along with a series of responses from the State's political parties.
State President Annette Turner is pleased to see many parties have genuinely turned their minds to the needs of rural, regional and remote NSW, but stresses the need to see more from the State's leaders - whatever the election outcome.
"Our list of important election asks has been developed and voted on from the ground up and highlights what country people are asking for from their representatives," Annette said. "Topping that list is more equitable funding for rural areas, and improved access to drought support.
"We are seeking more than a token 'tick-and-flick' attitude for the bush. We want transformative infrastructure projects that link Sydney to the West of the State; we need the construction of new dams; and we need innovative policies that establish new regional jobs and encourage decentralisation.
"There's an urgent need for significant and equitable funding into health, education and social issues. We're calling on state politicians to lobby for the Q-Fever vaccination to be placed onto the PBS; for improved blood storages for country hospitals; and a commitment to better nurse to patient ratios in these same hospitals."
Other priorities include:
- A cardiac bus service to visit and service rural and regional areas;
- More measures to protect health employees against increasing violence and assaults;
- Specific housing options for older women faced with homelessness or a housing crisis;
- Ongoing and increased support for agricultural industries in relation to drought support measures and the control of pest animals which are having a devastating impact on farm businesses in already trying times.
"The future for country NSW is bright and exciting. The resilience of country NSW has been demonstrated during the current drought covering most of the State, and what we need is a State Government that harnesses that potential so rural and regional NSW can truly thrive," Annette said.
The CWA of NSW has released a document that outlines its full set of policy requests, along with the responses received from each of the major parties contesting next weekend's election.
The document can be viewed at: https://www.cwaofnsw.org.au/election2019