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‘It just felt like the right thing to do’: Victorian MP to donate his pay rise to charity

3AW Mornings

Image: Instagram/@stuartgrimleymp

Last week Victorian politicians got a 3.5 per cent pay rise when the Independent Remuneration Tribunal handed down its first decision.

There was huge backlash against the pay rise, which brought the salaries of entry-level backbenchers to $182,413.

But a Torquay-based MP has been praised after deciding to return his pay rise to his community by donating it to charity.

Member for Western Victoria and Victorian Leader of Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party, Stuart Grimley, said donating the pay rise felt like the right thing to do.

“When the news came through of the 3.5 per cent pay rise on our base salary, to be honest with you, I felt quite uncomfortable,” he told 3AW’s Tony Jones.

“I’m an ex-Victoria Police member and just knowing how hard we needed to fight for those years for our pay rise, and also across all emergency service workers, I just thought the right thing to do, in this situation, was to donate it to charities within my electorate.”

The pay rise works out to around $5500 a year, so Mr Grimley will be making monthly donations of $500 to various charities.

He has already made his first donation.

“We’ve donated to the Geelong Mums, just the other day. We donated a couple of thousand nappies and wipes,” he said.

Mr Grimley urged Victorians to go to his Facebook page and nominate worthy causes in western Victoria.

He is yet to decide which charity he’ll donate to next.

“I’m happy to donate money, resources, vouchers, whatever it is that they need,” he said.

But the Victorian MP said he doesn’t expect other politicians to follow his lead.

“This is my personal choice. As a family we all sat down and decided this is the right thing to do, for us. I really don’t care who else does it, or doesn’t do it.”

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