Major-General Mick Slater.
Major-General Mick Slater.

Look out for mates this Easter

MORE than $1.3 billion in Commonwealth and State recovery funds has been paid into the Queensland economy by the end of March.

The two big payments by the end of March were $387.2 million in advanced payments made to local government authorities, and more than 646,000 claims for Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payments now granted, resulting in more than $745 million of paid claims.

These huge amounts are helping the state get back on its feet and in the coming months the total payment figures will continue to grow.

Under Operation Queenslander many of the state’s roads, schools, rail lines, ports and national parks are already back in business and the rate of recovery has been faster than expected.

But that is of little comfort to someone still battling with an insurance company or pondering what their next step is to rebuild their life.

In the past few weeks the contrasts of this vast state could not have been clearer, especially flying over areas still flooding in the far west and gulf country and when compared to north Queensland’s Atherton region that is green, lush and ready for visitors.

These remote flooded regions stand out in contrast to the sunny warm beaches of the Gold and Sunshine coasts of the south-east.

It’s a huge state and so much has happened, but we can all draw some comfort knowing that recovery is happening.

We also know that so much rain means growth and coming into this winter that means the body of grass is huge.

Good if you’re after fodder, but that also means lots of fuel for fires.

The coming holidays includes both Easter and Anzac Day.

Both are times to pause and reflect on how far we have come and see that the way ahead is on track under Operation Queenslander.

Please drive safely and if you know of a fellow Queenslander in need, do not hesitate to help.

We know that the Easter period will be particularly hard for many in our communities.

If you, or someone you know, feels that a little help and support might make a big difference, then be assured help is at hand.

The message is simple - talk to your mates, your family, or your GP or call 13HEALTH (13 432 584).

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