OPINION

Meryl Swanson: Canberra Matters | Vaccination is the way back to 'life as usual'

Like many, I watched in complete shock as careless individuals protested the Sydney lockdowns this past weekend.

These individuals have not only prolonged potential lockdowns, but they have also endangered thousands of lives and livelihoods across the state. I condemn this behaviour and want to thank the NSW Police for keeping us safe and challenging this deeply troubling attitude.

I want to thank the residents across the Hunter who have been incredibly resilient against the challenges of this outbreak in NSW and acknowledge the fortitude of Sydneysiders during this challenging time.

We all want Christmas with our families, and we all want to get back to life as usual, but this can only be achieved with access to the vaccine.

I've said many times in recent months that Labor wants to deliver for working families, and what that means is providing them with stability and certainty.

Families and businesses want to be able to plan for the present and the future.

With vaccine certainty in doubt and small businesses unable to bounce back, our region and much of the state are in trouble if things don't start to change.

Like many, I appreciate the current NSW Government is doing what it can during a challenging time. Still, we have reached the point of no return when its federal counterparts are letting down our state.

They want the ability to start, once again, looking forward to imagining a better, more prosperous life.

I intend to deliver the policies that will do just that. I understand that families in the Hunter want an economy that works for them, not the other way around.

We need to offer small local business assurances that we will get our economy back on track and protect it from lockdowns. We also need to ensure jobs are secure and that our health and way of life is safe.

Meryl Swanson is the federal MP for Paterson

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