Next chapter of community forums in Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday

Premier and Minister for the Olympics The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

Ministers and local MP Julieanne Gilbert will meet tomorrow with a group of committed Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday locals in Mackay, as part of a new round of Regional Community Forums.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said new membership for the forums in 2022 would continue the diversity of experience, ideas and interests in regional Queensland.

“Listening to communities is the hallmark of good government, and we work best when we work together,” the Premier said.

“Since 2019, our Regional Community Forums have helped to strengthen partnerships in rural and regional areas, collaborating on local solutions and local innovations for local issues.

“In Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday, forum members have expertise in a number of regional sectors, including tourism, resources, small business, education, health, and agribusiness.

“I welcome all new and returning members, and look forward to hearing about priorities and actions from the first round of forums for 2022.”

Mackay will host Mackay-Isaac Whitsunday forum members, with Minister for Police and Corrective Services and Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Mark Ryan and Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef and Minister for Science and Youth Affairs Meaghan Scanlon.

Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert will chair the forum.

Today’s agenda will recap and confirm areas of interest, and begin the development of a new region-specific action plan, guided by the priorities of forum members.

There will also be a session on the recent Queensland Workforce Summit.

Ms Gilbert said she was looking forward to meeting new forum members and hearing about their priorities and ideas.

“Over the past two years, our Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday forums have connected community members, encouraged the uptake of COVID-19 vaccines and created partnerships to enhance access to training and fill specific industry gaps across the region,” Ms Gilbert said.

“Through site visits to Tassal’s Proserpine Prawn Farm, Wilmar Bioethanol and Marto’s Mangoes in Bowen, they have learned more about the region’s diverse industry and workforce.

“And they have shared their priorities – including economic diversification, housing affordability, and the provision of health and community services.

“As we address these priorities, new membership will continue the great record of this program and inspire ongoing collaboration between Government, business and the community.”

Regional Community Forums will also be held tomorrow in Cairns (Far North Queensland), Townsville (North-North West Queensland), Longreach (Western Queensland), Rockhampton (Central Queensland), Bundaberg (Wide Bay-Burnett-Fraser Coast) and Toowoomba (Darling Downs-South West Queensland).

The Regional Community Forums are part of the Queensland Government’s Advancing Queensland’s Regions strategy, supported by the Office for Rural and Regional Queensland.

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