Greens Senator for NSW, Dr Mehreen Faruqi, has addressed a big climate rally in Wollongong yesterday, condemning Prime Minister Scott Morrison for his lack of leadership and called for more funding for firefighters as well as urgent climate action. Senator Faruqi said:
“The community gathered to first and foremost thank the firefighters, emergency workers, animal carers and thousands of others from around Australia who have sacrificed so much to protect people, homes and habitat, and those who have opened up their homes and hearts for bushfire affected communities. It’s clear that it is the community, not the Government, who have shown leadership through these terrible months.
“What we need at this time of disaster is courageous, truthful, and wise leadership.What we are sadly and shamefully getting from our government is the exact opposite. They are cowardly, dishonest and incompetent. This Liberal-National Government is full of science deniers. They have behaved like a bunch of climate criminals.
“We are literally in a fight for our lives. We need a wholesale shake up of our political, social and economic systems.
“The Liberal and Labor parties won’t say it because they’re too addicted to donations from the fossil fuel industry, but the Greens will. We need an immediate end to new coal, oil and gas – we need a plan to phase out existing coal. Clinging to coal as our country burns is just plain reckless.
“We need to give our firies the pay, resources and support they need instead of ignoring their pleas for years like the Government has. We need a huge investment to build climate resilience and plan for the new normal – that starts with a royal commission and getting parliament back to work.
“We are capable of massive change. It’s now up to us to force Governments to listen to us. As our movement grows, our actions must grow more bold and radical to shake Scott Morrison and his mates out of their climate denying stupor and out of government.
“Together, we will not let the tragedy and trauma of these bushfires pass without the change we need,” she concluded.