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Authorised by N. Suleyman MP, Keilor Downs Shopping Centre, 80 Taylors Road, Keilor Downs VIC 3038.

Media Centre

Getting A Flu Shot Before The Flu Season Hits

The Andrews Labor Government has ordered record quantities of the flu vaccine and is once again protecting Victoria’s littlest children from the deadly disease because...

Airport Rail Link Closer To Takeoff As Joint Agreement Signed

Melbourne Airport Rail Link (MARL) is set to become a reality, with the Victorian and Commonwealth Governments formally signing off on the project. Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced the signing of the Heads of Agreement today, which sets out the strategic objectives, governance arrangements and information sharing processes for the $10 billion joint commitment. Mr Morrison said the people of Melbourne and Victoria had been waiting far too long for the rail link to become a reality. “For decades Victorians have talked about a train line to the airport. We are delivering it. In last year’s Budget we made a $5 billion investment in the Melbourne Airport Rail Link, it was the biggest infrastructure commitment in the Budget. “Melbourne is truly a global city that deserves world class infrastructure. The Rail Link is part of our plan to bust congestion across the city and get people home faster and safer. “I’d like to thank the Premier and Minister Tudge who have worked constructively with me to land this agreement and bring the project closer to fruition.” A project team will be established to drive the development of a full Business Case for the project, which will not only connect Melbourne Airport to the rail network for the first time – but also integrate it with the Metro Tunnel and the future Suburban Rail Loop, and pave the way for fast-rail to the regions. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the Victorian Government is not wasting a minute leading the planning work for an Airport Rail Link that delivers for all Victorians. “The Melbourne Airport Rail Link has been talked about for far too long – we’re doing the detailed planning and development work to make it a reality,” Mr Andrews said. “By choosing the Sunshine route, we are ensuring all Victorians can benefit from the rail link, including people living in Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo. As we complete the business case, we’re also doing the work needed to deliver fast rail to the regions.” Melbourne Airport is a key part of Victoria and Australia’s economic growth. In 2016-17, it handled more than 35 million passenger movements and by 2038, it is expected to almost double to more than 67 million, as Victoria’s population continues to grow and demand increases. Melbourne Airport Rail Link will alleviate congestion on the main road connection to the airport, the Tullamarine Freeway, and unlock capacity for the growing population in Melbourne’s north-west. Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population Alan Tudge said following the successful widening of the Tullamarine Freeway, the airport link would bust congestion for generations to come. “This is a critical project for Melbourne. It will make it easier for residents and make our city more attractive to visitors,” Mr Tudge said. “When complete, someone in Pakenham, Frankston or Ringwood will be able to get onto the train, and be at the airport in the time it would have taken to drive, but without having to worry about parking.” Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said this is part of the Victorian Government’s unprecedented pipeline of major transport projects. “We’re building the Metro Tunnel, removing dangerous level crossings and getting on with the Melbourne Airport Rail Link.” “This is not just about getting from the airport to the city – it’s about better connecting our suburbs and regions, so people have better services wherever they live.” Planning and development of the MARL Business Case is already well underway. Rail Projects Victoria has engaged expert technical and commercial advisers for the project, and ecological, traffic and geotechnical investigations have begun. Early market engagement on the MARL attracted submissions from more than 100 local and global organisations. Further market sounding will be undertaken to assess equity partners, private sector involvement, financing arrangements and other matters. A reference group including community, industry and local government representatives will be established to provide guidance and feedback to the project team as the Business Case is developed. The State and Federal Governments have committed up to $5 billion each to deliver MARL. The total cost of the project is estimated to be in the range of $8-13 billion, with construction to take up to nine years and due to commence in 2022. The Business Case will be delivered by 2020 and will assess station and procurement options, value capture and creation opportunities, and economic analysis of the recommended solution.

Airport Rail Link Closer To Takeoff As Joint Agreement Signed

Melbourne Airport Rail Link (MARL) is set to become a reality, with the Victorian and Commonwealth Governments formally signing off on the project. Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced the signing of the Heads of Agreement today, which sets out the strategic objectives, governance arrangements and information sharing processes for the $10 billion joint commitment. Mr Morrison said the people of Melbourne and Victoria had been waiting far too long for the rail link to become a reality. “For decades Victorians have talked about a train line to the airport. We are delivering it. In last year’s Budget we made a $5 billion investment in the Melbourne Airport Rail Link, it was the biggest infrastructure commitment in the Budget. “Melbourne is truly a global city that deserves world class infrastructure. The Rail Link is part of our plan to bust congestion across the city and get people home faster and safer. “I’d like to thank the Premier and Minister Tudge who have worked constructively with me to land this agreement and bring the project closer to fruition.” A project team will be established to drive the development of a full Business Case for the project, which will not only connect Melbourne Airport to the rail network for the first time – but also integrate it with the Metro Tunnel and the future Suburban Rail Loop, and pave the way for fast-rail to the regions. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the Victorian Government is not wasting a minute leading the planning work for an Airport Rail Link that delivers for all Victorians. “The Melbourne Airport Rail Link has been talked about for far too long – we’re doing the detailed planning and development work to make it a reality,” Mr Andrews said. “By choosing the Sunshine route, we are ensuring all Victorians can benefit from the rail link, including people living in Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo. As we complete the business case, we’re also doing the work needed to deliver fast rail to the regions.” Melbourne Airport is a key part of Victoria and Australia’s economic growth. In 2016-17, it handled more than 35 million passenger movements and by 2038, it is expected to almost double to more than 67 million, as Victoria’s population continues to grow and demand increases. Melbourne Airport Rail Link will alleviate congestion on the main road connection to the airport, the Tullamarine Freeway, and unlock capacity for the growing population in Melbourne’s north-west. Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population Alan Tudge said following the successful widening of the Tullamarine Freeway, the airport link would bust congestion for generations to come. “This is a critical project for Melbourne. It will make it easier for residents and make our city more attractive to visitors,” Mr Tudge said. “When complete, someone in Pakenham, Frankston or Ringwood will be able to get onto the train, and be at the airport in the time it would have taken to drive, but without having to worry about parking.” Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said this is part of the Victorian Government’s unprecedented pipeline of major transport projects. “We’re building the Metro Tunnel, removing dangerous level crossings and getting on with the Melbourne Airport Rail Link.” “This is not just about getting from the airport to the city – it’s about better connecting our suburbs and regions, so people have better services wherever they live.” Planning and development of the MARL Business Case is already well underway. Rail Projects Victoria has engaged expert technical and commercial advisers for the project, and ecological, traffic and geotechnical investigations have begun. Early market engagement on the MARL attracted submissions from more than 100 local and global organisations. Further market sounding will be undertaken to assess equity partners, private sector involvement, financing arrangements and other matters. A reference group including community, industry and local government representatives will be established to provide guidance and feedback to the project team as the Business Case is developed. The State and Federal Governments have committed up to $5 billion each to deliver MARL. The total cost of the project is estimated to be in the range of $8-13 billion, with construction to take up to nine years and due to commence in 2022. The Business Case will be delivered by 2020 and will assess station and procurement options, value capture and creation opportunities, and economic analysis of the recommended solution.

Laws Passed To Boost Nurse And Midwife Ratios

The Andrews Labor Government has delivered on its pledge to give nurses and midwives the laws they need to deliver the highest quality of care for Victorians. New legislation passed Parliament today to enshrine improved minimum nurse and midwife to patient ratios in law – improvements that will see an extra 600 nurses and midwives employed in Victorian public hospitals. The amendments to the Safe Patient Care (Nurse to Patient and Midwife to Patient Ratios) Act 2015 mean the number of nurses and midwives on a variety of shifts will be rounded up – instead of down – removing a loophole that meant staff were often carrying a workload up to 50 per cent higher than the prescribed ratio. Nurses and midwives can now devote more time to each patient, with safer care and better health outcomes. Ratios will be improved in palliative care, birthing suites and special care nurseries, as well as during peak times in emergency department resuscitation cubicles. Victorians suffering from stroke, blood disease and cancer will have more nurses caring for them, with new ratios in acute stroke units, haematology wards and acute inpatient oncology. We will now go a step further and start work on more amendments to the Act that will deliver an extra 500 nurses and midwives – taking the total to 1,100. The Labor Government will also deliver on its commitment to create a $50 million Nursing and Midwifery Workforce Development Fund, which will expand the existing Registered Nurse and Midwife Graduate Program and establish a graduate program for Enrolled Nurses for the first time. This will employ 400 newly graduated Enrolled Nurses over the next four years, meaning Victorians will be able to study a Diploma of Nursing at TAFE – one of the Labor Government’s free priority TAFE courses – then start work as an enrolled nurse once they graduate. The Fund will also provide up to 400 postgraduate scholarships for current nurses and midwives to upgrade their skills, 400 places in programs such as the Postgraduate Midwifery Employment Program, as well as refresher programs for 800 nurses and midwives currently registered but not practising, so they can re-enter the workforce. It will also include $10 million for grants, scholarships, graduate jobs and refreshers for regional students and current nurses and midwives. Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos “Our fantastic nurses and midwives work hard to look after us when we are at our most vulnerable. We’re supporting them with the pay and conditions they deserve, so they can work safely and well.” “The evidence is clear – nurses and midwives who can spend more time with each patient give higher quality care in a safer environment, helping people recover and get back to their lives more quickly.” “We promised we would deliver 1,100 new nurses and we’re not wasting a minute. These changes mean an extra 600 nurses on our wards and there are more to come, as we build a stronger and safer system.”

Laws Passed To Boost Nurse And Midwife Ratios

The Andrews Labor Government has delivered on its pledge to give nurses and midwives the laws they need to deliver the highest quality of care for Victorians. New legislation passed Parliament today to enshrine improved minimum nurse and midwife to patient ratios in law – improvements that will see an extra 600 nurses and midwives employed in Victorian public hospitals. The amendments to the Safe Patient Care (Nurse to Patient and Midwife to Patient Ratios) Act 2015 mean the number of nurses and midwives on a variety of shifts will be rounded up – instead of down – removing a loophole that meant staff were often carrying a workload up to 50 per cent higher than the prescribed ratio. Nurses and midwives can now devote more time to each patient, with safer care and better health outcomes. Ratios will be improved in palliative care, birthing suites and special care nurseries, as well as during peak times in emergency department resuscitation cubicles. Victorians suffering from stroke, blood disease and cancer will have more nurses caring for them, with new ratios in acute stroke units, haematology wards and acute inpatient oncology. We will now go a step further and start work on more amendments to the Act that will deliver an extra 500 nurses and midwives – taking the total to 1,100. The Labor Government will also deliver on its commitment to create a $50 million Nursing and Midwifery Workforce Development Fund, which will expand the existing Registered Nurse and Midwife Graduate Program and establish a graduate program for Enrolled Nurses for the first time. This will employ 400 newly graduated Enrolled Nurses over the next four years, meaning Victorians will be able to study a Diploma of Nursing at TAFE – one of the Labor Government’s free priority TAFE courses – then start work as an enrolled nurse once they graduate. The Fund will also provide up to 400 postgraduate scholarships for current nurses and midwives to upgrade their skills, 400 places in programs such as the Postgraduate Midwifery Employment Program, as well as refresher programs for 800 nurses and midwives currently registered but not practising, so they can re-enter the workforce. It will also include $10 million for grants, scholarships, graduate jobs and refreshers for regional students and current nurses and midwives. Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos “Our fantastic nurses and midwives work hard to look after us when we are at our most vulnerable. We’re supporting them with the pay and conditions they deserve, so they can work safely and well.” “The evidence is clear – nurses and midwives who can spend more time with each patient give higher quality care in a safer environment, helping people recover and get back to their lives more quickly.” “We promised we would deliver 1,100 new nurses and we’re not wasting a minute. These changes mean an extra 600 nurses on our wards and there are more to come, as we build a stronger and safer system.”

Worlds Best Lining Up To Build Airport Rail

More than 100 local and global organisations have put their hand up to deliver the Melbourne Airport Rail Link.

Local Issues

The Main Road and Furlong Road Level Crossings Are Gone!

The Andrews Labor Government is putting people first and removing dangerous level crossings across Melbourne, including at Main Road in St Albans where 16 people have tragically lost their lives. Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan joined local Member Natalie Suleyman and local resident Dianne Dejanovic on Monday 28 November to mark the reopening of Main Road without boom gates for the first time. Ms Dejanovic’s son Christian was killed at Main Road level crossing in 2012. A memorial will be installed in the forecourt of the new St Albans Station to honour his life, and the lives of others killed at level crossings in Victoria. Main Road level crossing was Victoria’s most dangerous. There have been two deaths and more than 60 near misses at the crossing in the past decade alone – more than any other, anywhere else in the state. It was also one of the most congested crossings in Victoria – the boom gates were down for more than an hour in the two-hour morning peak, causing delays and frustration for motorists, cyclists and the entire community. The project to remove the level crossings at both Main and Furlong Roads in St Albans involved 600 staff working over 176,000 hours to excavate 18 Olympic swimming pools-worth of soil and rock to lower the rail line. The Labor Government has now removed seven level crossings in less than two years – more than were removed in the entire decade before they came to office. Work is underway at a further 13, and four more will begin next year. By the end of 2018, 37 level crossing removals will be finished or underway. On top of reducing congestion, increasing safety and improving public transport, the level crossing removal project is creating thousands of local jobs. For more information, visit levelcrossings.vic.gov.au. Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews  “There have been too many deaths, too much trauma and too many families torn apart by level crossings. We’re putting people first and removing these crossings for good.”  “The memorial will recognise the price the Dejanovic family and countless others have paid, and serve as a reminder of why getting rid of these crossings is so important, and why we haven’t got a moment to waste.” Quotes attributable to Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan “This vital project is saving lives and getting people home safer and sooner to their families. It’s an investment in people, and we’re getting it done.”  Quotes attributable to Member for St Albans Natalie Suleyman “St Albans will never be the same – two dangerous level crossings are gone and the lives they claimed will forever be remembered at the new station. This is what it means to put people first.”

The Main Road and Furlong Road Level Crossings Are Gone!

The Andrews Labor Government is putting people first and removing dangerous level crossings across Melbourne, including at Main Road in St Albans where 16 people have tragically lost their lives. Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan joined local Member Natalie Suleyman and local resident Dianne Dejanovic on Monday 28 November to mark the reopening of Main Road without boom gates for the first time. Ms Dejanovic’s son Christian was killed at Main Road level crossing in 2012. A memorial will be installed in the forecourt of the new St Albans Station to honour his life, and the lives of others killed at level crossings in Victoria. Main Road level crossing was Victoria’s most dangerous. There have been two deaths and more than 60 near misses at the crossing in the past decade alone – more than any other, anywhere else in the state. It was also one of the most congested crossings in Victoria – the boom gates were down for more than an hour in the two-hour morning peak, causing delays and frustration for motorists, cyclists and the entire community. The project to remove the level crossings at both Main and Furlong Roads in St Albans involved 600 staff working over 176,000 hours to excavate 18 Olympic swimming pools-worth of soil and rock to lower the rail line. The Labor Government has now removed seven level crossings in less than two years – more than were removed in the entire decade before they came to office. Work is underway at a further 13, and four more will begin next year. By the end of 2018, 37 level crossing removals will be finished or underway. On top of reducing congestion, increasing safety and improving public transport, the level crossing removal project is creating thousands of local jobs. For more information, visit levelcrossings.vic.gov.au. Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews  “There have been too many deaths, too much trauma and too many families torn apart by level crossings. We’re putting people first and removing these crossings for good.”  “The memorial will recognise the price the Dejanovic family and countless others have paid, and serve as a reminder of why getting rid of these crossings is so important, and why we haven’t got a moment to waste.” Quotes attributable to Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan “This vital project is saving lives and getting people home safer and sooner to their families. It’s an investment in people, and we’re getting it done.”  Quotes attributable to Member for St Albans Natalie Suleyman “St Albans will never be the same – two dangerous level crossings are gone and the lives they claimed will forever be remembered at the new station. This is what it means to put people first.”

New Ginifer Station Installed at Furlong Road

Major construction to remove the dangerous and congested level crossing at Furlong Road is one step closer to completion.

New St Albans Station Installed at Main Road

The new St Albans station is on site in Melbourne’s west after being constructed more than 50 kilometres away in Kilsyth.

Major Construction at Furlong Road Continues

Major construction to remove the dangerous and congested level crossing at Furlong Road is now underway.