Back in early October, speaking in Parliament following the first round of ugly anti-mosque protests in Bendigo, Ms Peulich said the Government should act immediately to make use of some of the $25 million set aside for social cohesion.
One spiteful rally attracted around 650 protesters on opposing sides, and the upheaval in Bendigo led to cancelling major events, cost the local economy approximately $500,000, not to mention the significant damage caused to Bendigo and Victoria’s reputations.
Ms Peulich has raised the matter of the social cohesion and resilience fund sitting unused a total of 13 times in Parliament since May 2015.
Quotes attributed to Inga Peulich MLC, Shadow Minister for Multicultural Affairs:
“Given the importance of bipartisanship which is the foundation of the success of our multicultural affairs policy, I am disappointed that all local reps and representatives of the opposition party were not briefed and invited to participate in the event.
“When it comes to matters with international implications, strong symbolism of unity is important.
“Nothing is more powerful than the political parties standing shoulder to shoulder on such occasions.
“The Government should have acted on this situation back in early October rather than allowing things to simmer and boil over another two months.
October 18 Adjournment debate: http://hansard.parliament.vic.gov.au/?IW_INDEX=HansardXML&IW_FIELD_TEXT=SpeechIdKey%20CONTAINS%20(8-10-2015_council_55)%20AND%20OrderId%20CONTAINS%20(8)&LDMS=Y
Other mentions of the Social Cohesion and Resilience Fund: hansard.parliament.vic.gov.au/search/?IW_BATCHSIZE=&IW_SORT=&IW_FIELD_ADVANCE_AND=&IW_FIELD_ADVANCE_PHRASE=social+cohesion