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    MS Swimathon

    On Saturday the 28th of February I took part in the MS Swimathon at the Runaway Bay Sports Super Centre. The MS Swimathon is a Queensland based fundraising initiative where teams of at least 6 people are sponsored by friends, family and work colleagues to swim in a 12 hour relay; raising vital funds for Queenslanders living with multiple sclerosis (MS).



    My team – the Super Dooper Ducks, raised $2,413 for this worthy cause. All up, the event raised $32,845 for people living with MS in Queensland. A huge congrats to another Broadwater local team, Ash’s Rubber Duckies, who are currently ranked #1 in Queensland – they’ve raised over $10,000! For more information, please visit the MS Swimathon website by clicking here.


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    Thank you Broadwater

    I just want to thank Broadwater for the trust and faith you’ve put in me to continue being your strong voice in the Queensland Parliament. I will continue to put my heart and soul into serving our community over this next term of Government. I also want to take the opportunity to thank my hard-working volunteers who helped throughout the campaign. It wouldn’t have been possible without all your help.

    Cheers, Verity

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    Shaving the Bearded Bandits

    This year the teachers at Labrador State School all participated in Movember. The Labrador Chin Curtins, as they called themselves, grew their beards to spark conversation and raise vital funds for its men’s health programs to improve the lives of men affected by prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental health problems.

    I had the fortune of placing the highest bid and had the privilege of shaving off the beard of the Principal, Mr Brian Ragh. I’m very proud to support such a great initiative and would encourage all of you to get involved with Movember next year!

    More information about Movember can be found here.

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    Gold Coast residents to receive Australia’s first statewide surgery guarantee

    The Newman LNP Government today announced that local patients in the Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service will soon receive a guarantee to have their elective (non-emergency) surgery on time, in a national first.

    State Member for Broadwater, Verity Barton MP, said from the 1st February 2015, the LNP Government’s Wait Time Guarantee would ensure all eligible Queenslanders who are ready for elective surgery will have their procedure within the medically recommended time.

    “If the Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service is unable to provide surgery within the recommended time frame, then patients will be offered the next available appointment in a public or private hospital at no cost to the patient,” Miss Barton said.

    “Their surgery will be arranged by the original hospital, and patients will not have to pay for any travel or accommodation costs if they are treated over 50km from their original hospital.”

    “This is a necessary reform for the local community – patients will no longer just be a number in the queue for surgery.”

    “Under the former Labor Government 17% of patients waited too long for their surgery – that’s nearly one in five. We expect to have this at 0% by the end of the year, and the LNP’s Surgery Wait Time Guarantee will keep it at 0%.”

    Miss Barton said in just over two and a half years since being elected, the LNP had transformed Queensland Health from being a Department even the Labor Party wanted to destroy, into a patient-focused service which is now offering an Australian first to Queensland residents.

    “As part of its election commitment, this Can-Do LNP Government pledged to revitalise frontline health services for Queenslanders. Today’s announcement reiterates our determination to deliver on that commitment.”

    “This is a strong team, with a strong plan to deliver the services Queenslanders need for a brighter future.”

    Miss Barton said from 1 February 2015, all eligible elective surgery will be carried out within the following nationally defined times:

    • Urgent (category 1): Surgery recommended within 30 days of being added to the wait list, as the condition could get worse and become an emergency;
    • Semi-urgent (category 2): Surgery recommended within 90 days of being added to the wait list, as the condition is causing pain or disability but is unlikely to become an emergency;
    • Non-urgent (category 3): Surgery recommended within 365 days of being added to the wait list, as the condition is causing minimal pain or disability.

    Miss Barton said patients who are currently on Queensland Health’s elective surgery wait list would soon receive a letter detailing how the guarantee works.

    For more information about the wait guarantee visit www.qld.gov.au/WaitTimeGuarantee or call 1300 332 807 between 7am and 9pm, seven days a week.



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    Biggera Waters State School Safer Grants Funding

    Students at Biggera Waters State School can look forward to a safer school environment with a funding boost from the Suncorp Safer Streets Grant program.

    State Member for Broadwater, Verity Barton MP, and the Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services, the Honourable Jack Dempsey MP today announced that Biggera Waters State School P&C Association have been successful in their application for funding from the Suncorp Safer Streets Grant program. They have been awarded $9,966.

    This money will be used to install security cameras at the school to reduce incidents of property crime, vandalism, unauthorised access and reduce the fear of crime among staff, students and visitors.

    “This is fantastic news for the local school community,” Miss Barton said. “This money will go a long way to ensuring the staff, students and grounds of Biggera Waters State School will feel and be safer.”

    “I congratulate the P&C for their work in getting this grant and thank Suncorp for their support of this great school. The Can-Do LNP Government is committed to ensuring Queensland is the safest place to live, work and raise a family and we’re proud to support programs such as this one which promote safety in our community.”

    The grants, which range from $1,000 to $10,000, are available to help local communities develop and implement projects that improve road safety and help reduce crime and fear of crime in Queensland.

    For more information or to see a full list of recipients please visit



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    New family and child service for Gold Coast

    Vulnerable families and their children on the Gold Coast will benefit from more support, through a new community-based child safety intake and referral service.

    Member for Broadwater Verity Barton said Act for Kids had been selected to operate the new Gold Coast Family and Child Connect service from early January 2015, delivering on the Queensland Government’s election promise to revitalise frontline services.

    “Family and Child Connect services are an important component of the Stronger Families reform program which aim to shift the focus from placing children in care to keeping families at home together whenever possible,” Miss Barton said.

    “The community-based intake and referral services will mean that families at risk of statutory child protection intervention will no longer need to go through the door of child safety to get the help they need.

    “Instead, they will have access to information, support and referrals through this new service.

    “Staff at the new service will be able to assess the individual needs of families and arrange for the right support to be provided.

    “Overall it will mean that support will be more easily accessible for those families who need it to stay together.”

    Miss Barton said more money was being invested and families, not process, were now the priority.

    “Labor was more concerned about paperwork and red tape, but our government has a strong plan that will give families living on the Gold Coast a brighter future,” she said.

    “The new service is part of our government’s record investment of $406 million over the next five years to revitalise the state’s child protection system and better support vulnerable children and their families.

    “This funding is part of the government’s ongoing response to the recommendations made by the Child Protection Commission of Inquiry.”

    For more information about the Government’s response to the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry Final Report, go to: www.communities.qld.gov.au/gateway/reform-and-renewal/child-and-family-reforms


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    Broadwater passengers to save

    From today passengers travelling from Helensvale to Brisbane CBD will pay less for public transport.

    Miss Verity Barton MP said this government has a strong plan to get Broadwater residents back on to public transport after years of mis-management and blunders by the former Labor government.

    “Only an LNP government is delivering real savings that will provide more money in the back pocket of the residents living in my electorate of Broadwater,” Miss Barton said.

    “We asked the public what they wanted to spend the $30 million scrapped carbon tax savings on and the resounding answer was cheaper fares.

    “Today, passengers across the State are reaping the benefits of a five per cent reduction to public transport fares.

    “A passenger travelling a 13 zone trip (from Helenvale to the Brisbane CBD) now saves $225.72 per year”

    Mr Emerson said when we came into office we promised to tackle affordability and it is a privilege to be part of a government delivering cheaper fares.

    “Only under the LNP have passengers been delivered a Queensland-first, state-wide public transport fare reduction,” Mr Emerson said.

    “The cost of living relief will continue into next year with no increase planned in 2015.

    “The former Labor government’s public transport record consisted of slugging passengers with 52 per cent fare increases over three years and record low rail reliability.

    “A regular weekly passenger will be paying less now than what they would have been paying under Labor.

    “In stark contrast, the LNP have a plan to improve frequency, reliability and affordability of the network building on our already strong record showing passengers are choosing public transport.”

    Mr Emerson said this government is serious about getting public transport on track for the people of Queensland.

    “We have added 3000 additional bus and train services a week, we are the most reliable metro rail network in Australia and will be delivering real-time information for customers across the TransLink network in South East Queensland.”


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    Flashing school zone lights to be switched on

    New flashing school zone lights will soon be installed on Coombabah Road at Biggera Waters State School as a result of a local petition and forms part of the Newman Government’s ongoing commitment to improving road safety.

    Hundreds of locals rallied behind the cause to have the flashing lights installed at the main entrance to Biggera Waters State School.

    State Member for Broadwater Verity Barton said the flashing lights will help remind motorists they have an obligation to slow down when driving through school zones.

    “Young children can be unpredictable by nature, and speeding through school zones greatly increases the risk, especially to young children, and the installation of flashing school zone lights will go a long way to reminding drivers they’re approaching a school and need to slow down.” Ms Barton said.

    The flashing lights which will be installed on Coombabah Road will complement those that the Government has already installed on Hollywell Road.

    “Most parents and children use Coombabah Road as the main entrance to the school, so it makes sense to remind motorists of their obligations to slow down when they get to Coombabah Road.

    “It was heartening to see hundreds of locals, especially families at the school, support my petition calling for these lights to be installed to help make Biggera Waters State School safer for our children.

    “Road safety is the responsibility of everyone and a top priority for this Government, especially around schools and today’s announcement reinforces our commitment to make Queensland the safest place to live, work and raise a family.

    Since 2012, the Newman Government has committed $10 million over four years to install flashing light signs at over 300 school zones across Queensland.



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    Sign the Petition: Flashing Speed Zone Lights at Biggera Waters State School

    I’m petitioning to have flashing school zone speed limit signs installed at Biggera Waters State School on Coombabah Road. Fill in the form below to sign the petition and add your support to improving safety for children at Biggera Waters State School!

    Your Full Name (required)

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    Standing up for the Broadwater

    On the 9th September, the Queensland Labor Party moved a motion in Parliament which attempted to politicise community consultation and representation on the Gold Coast. The Labor Party said I voted against their motion in order to allow development on the Broadwater, the Spit and Wavebreak Island.

    I’ve just uploaded my speech so you can watch and be the judge of what I actually had to say.

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