Mr. J. BULL (Sunbury) — On Wednesday, 29 April, I joined the Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services; the member for Macedon, who is the Parliamentary Secretary for Health; and the member for Yuroke at a local forum discussing ambulance services in our region. The forum was held in the Blue Room of the Sunbury Aquatic and Leisure Centre and was extremely well attended. People came from Craigieburn, Roxburgh Park, Gisborne, Macedon, Woodend and of course Sunbury, to name just a few. There were a number of paramedics and local healthcare professionals in the room, as well as members of the community, all of whom are very concerned about the ambulance crisis that has developed over the past four years.
One thing that shone through at this forum was that the previous government left ambulance services in disarray. They are stretched to the limit. Paramedics are under severe stress, and the Victorian community is at a loss as to what to do. While paramedics lost faith in the former government, people lost faith in their ambulance services. At the forum the minister reported that the war on paramedics is over and that this government will stand side by side with our ambulance services to help them do the very difficult job we the community rely on day in and day out. I thank the minister for attending the forum, and I thank all of those local community members and healthcare professionals who came out on a cold night to show just how much they care about this extremely important issue.