ANZAC Day is a solemn occasion where we remember and give our thanks to those who served our country, and those who did not return.
But veterans and their families live their service, and the impacts of it, every day.
That was the point I was making on Wednesday. We, as a community and a Parliament, should support veterans and their families every day of the year — not just on ANZAC Day.
Having reflected on the contribution I made on Wednesday, I know the manner in which I made that point – as valuable as I continue to believe it is – was poor.
It was over the top and caused offence where it needn’t have – and certainly was not intended to. For that – I apologise.
Every single day since I was given the honour of serving as Minister for Veterans I have devoted to improving the lives of veterans – in areas such as employment, housing and mental health.
I continue to believe firmly that we need a Federal Royal Commission into Veteran Suicide – a silent crisis that we must face and fix.
And I am proud that after a very difficult 2020, Victorians will get to commemorate in person at events across the state this ANZAC Day.
I am forever appreciative to the veteran community for their contribution to our country – and will continue to work as hard as I can, every day to honour and improve their lives.