Another whirlwind year is coming to a close, with Christmas and the end of 2021 rapidly approaching. If we thought 2020 was an interesting year with the beginning of the pandemic, 2021 certainly kept up the momentum of absurdity, with new strains of COVID, more lockdowns and ever-changing restrictions.

And so now as we approach Christmas 2021 with all the challenges and complications of the year I think I can be forgiven for saying “I can’t believe it’s almost Christmas, where has the year gone?” And on that note I’d like to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and best wishes for a better and brighter 2022 and a summer filled with all our beautiful balmy Gold Coast has to offer this summer.
 

This Year’s Progress in Southport

Despite the craziness of the pandemic, there’s been some terrific progress in some areas in Southport. Ongoing work to solve homelessness on the Gold Coast continues – and this year saw the opening of Gold Coast Youth Foyer in Southport, a facility that provides accommodation and on-site services to young people who are homeless, or at risk of homelessness.

In addition, we saw some new investment in infrastructure at our local schools, with some notable projects like additional classrooms at Bellevue Park State School and a new uniform shop at Southport State School funded. However, there’s more to be done and I will continue to fight hard for better outcomes and funding for Southport.

The site of the old Ridgeway TAFE continues to be the source of ongoing negotiation between the State Government and the Gold Coast City Council, and I have ongoing conversations with the Minister to push for a resolution to the site to give it back to the community for local use.

In 2022, my focus will continue to be finding solutions to homelessness and pushing the government to deliver additional infrastructure and funding that our local community so desperately needs.
 

Open Borders and end of the Border Bubble

There’s been some terrific developments in the opening of Queensland’s borders, with the news that vaccinated border zone residents are able to move freely across the border without the need for a PCR test, for any reason but with a border pass which is valid for 14 days. A welcome relief to many, I am sure, meaning many will be able to unite with family and loved ones for the holiday period. We’ve been calling for an end to the border bubble, at last there’s some light at the end of this tunnel.
 

Parliamentary Health and Environment Committee

As Deputy Chair of the Health and Environment Committee the year kicked off early with the review of new Covid-19 laws and powers, followed by an extensive work into Voluntary Assisted Dying legislation, Barrier Reef Protection Measures, estimates hearings, and a series of audit reports into Queensland Hospital and Health services. As part of these inquiries, I visited over twenty hospitals across Queensland to see first-hand the pressure our health system is under, even before the pandemic started. And yesterday, I have been asked to be Deputy Chair of the Mental Health Select Committee in 2022.
 

Farewell 2021

2021 will go down as one of my busiest years since being elected in 2012. And as always if there’s every anything I can do to be of assistance, please feel free to give me a call, send me a text or an email.

Best Wishes and Season’s Greetings to you, your staff and your family for the festive season!

 

Rob Molhoek MP
State Member for Southport
Shadow Assistant Minister for Mental Health
Shadow Assistant Minister for Drug and Alcohol Treatment
Shadow Assistant Minister for Families and Seniors

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