[20 October2020:] The need for tailored financial support for travel agents continues to be made on the floor of Federal Parliament.
Multiple Members of Parliament have raised the issue with the most recent being during yesterday’s proceedings and included:
The Member for Maribyrnong, Bill Shorten:
“… I want to talk about one group of people. If they are not the hardest hit, no other group is any harder hit. I talk about the small and medium-size businesses of the travel agency sector. They've been terribly hard hit in Australia, in Victoria and in my electorate of Maribyrnong and they are concerned that, without proper, targeted support, it will be the death knell for their businesses.”
The Member for Warringah, Zali Stegall:
“I met with a number of travel agents within Warringah, and they are desperate. They are calling on Minister Birmingham to do something about their sector. They're desperate that there either be some travel corridors or something to address it. They are in a situation of no pipeline of work for some 12 to 18 months, as we face worldwide uncertainty over what is happening with the pandemic. We can't just assume that a vaccine will be available and it will be a return to business as usual. We must prepare and have a long-term plan.”
A petition calling for tailored support with 5008 signatures was also lodged in the House of Representatives https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Hansard/Hansard_Display?bid=chamber/hansardr/7bf0b0b3-e260-451a-aa4e-ec6d77176285/&sid=0061
AFTA CEO Darren Rudd is currently in Canberra meeting with key decision makers including the Prime Minister’s office continuing to push the cause for support to save the sector.