15/01/2018

Coalition Government delivers boost for lifesaving clubs in Wide Bay

Wide Bay beaches and waterways will become safer, with each lifesaving club in the electorate set to receive a $5000 boost from the Coalition Government to help reduce drownings and near-deaths.

Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien said the finding was part of an additional $3 million the Coalition Government is providing to lifesaving clubs and other water safety organisations around Australia.
 
“With some very busy and popular beaches in Wide Bay, including Rainbow, Noosa, Sunshine and Peregian beaches, this funding is a very welcome boost to help surf lifesaving clubs keep people safe,” Mr O’Brien said.
 
“Whether you are a visitor to the region who enjoys the water, or a local and regular beach swimmer, water safety is of paramount importance at all times.
 
“The funding will enable the Wide Bay clubs to buy new rescue equipment, plus first aid and medical supplies. They might even choose to invest in new technology such as drones to enable remote monitoring of unpatrolled beaches,” Mr O’Brien said.
 
The five year Reduce Drownings initiative began in 2013-14. It provided a funding boost of $15 million in total to Surf Life Saving Australia (SLSA), surf lifesaving clubs across Australia, the Royal Life Saving Society – Australia (RLSSA) and AUSTSWIM for their water safety programs.
 
The additional funding for 2018-19 will go towards the same programs. As well as the beach equipment program, it will boost:

  • SLSA’s Beach Drowning Black Spot reduction program to tackle the incidence of drowning in identified high risk areas;
  • RLSSA’s River Drowning Black Spot identification program and Swim and Survive lessons for children, especially Indigenous and disadvantaged children;
  • AUSTSWIM’s program to provide accredited swimming and water safety teachers to targeted population groups, including remote, migrant and disadvantaged communities, and people with a disability.

The extension of Reduce Drownings will make our coastal and inland water less risky for all Australians.
 
This financial year, the Coalition Government is also providing more than $15 million for ongoing water safety activities by SLSA, RLSSA, AUSTSWIM and Laurie Lawrence Swimming Enterprises.
 
“These activities include awareness raising and education, policy advice, surf lifesaving activities, surf patrols, swimming lessons, and swim teachers’ training and education.”