Adjournment: Queensland Border Closure

Mrs GERBER (Currumbin—LNP) (7.00 pm): I rise to speak on an issue that is of tremendous importance to my community. It is causing angst within my community and it is causing consternation for the people in my community almost every single day. I am talking about the border closure between Coolangatta and Tweed Heads and the uncertainty around when that border will be reopened. The government recently published its ‘Roadmap to easing Queensland’s restrictions’ which stated that the easing of restrictions would occur around 10 July 2020. Yesterday the Premier changed her mind and said it would occur in September. Now she is not sure when the border will reopen, but one thing is certain: she says it will stay closed. This is not good enough for my community. My community needs certainty around when the border will reopen. My office has been inundated by locals saying how much this closure is affecting their business and their livelihoods. They need it reopened sooner rather than later. In fact, today in the Courier-Mail the national Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Paul Kelly, said that there is no reason for the states to remain closed. I table that article.

My community needs certainty around when the border will be reopened so that they can plan lives accordingly. These issues are unique to my community’s border towns of Tweed and Coolangatta. The government’s one-size-fits-all approach does not work for the border community. The continued closure is especially affecting our family owned small businesses. There is an article in today’s Gold Coast Bulletin which details how much the small businesses in the border communities are being affected, businesses like Currumbin Boatshed. I table that article so members can read about the small businesses in my community that are being affected.

In my maiden speech I gave my commitment to the people of Currumbin that I would not waste a single opportunity to represent them. This issue is devastating my community. The government needs to provide certainty around when the border will reopen, and my community needs this now.