Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 10 Hansard (22 September) . . Page.. 4404..
Whilst I sometimes agree and at other times disagree with the paper, it serves a very important role. The publication has maintained its original charter to provide balanced, reliable, local news to all Canberrans, free, in their letterbox on a weekly basis. The first Chronicle was published on 16 September 1981 and, I am pleased to note, featured a former capital territory minister, the Liberal Michael Hodgman, on the front page—a person that I have spoken about in this place before.
My thanks and congratulations go to the current staff: Andrew Benson, Tracey Murray, Helen Olijynk, Adam Stanworth, Victoria Kane, Sarah Walker, Ian Kinghorn, Paul Dove, Sarah Ruzic, Graham Spencer, Joanna Baker, Hannah Jonkers, Peter Reynolds, Naomi Fallon, Joni Scanlon and a couple of people that I deal with reasonably regularly, Meredith Clisby and Elese Lee.
Best wishes for the following 30 years.
Defence Widows Support Group
MR HANSON (Molonglo) (6.38): I rise tonight to talk about a lunch I went to today at the CIT restaurant with the Defence Widows Support Group, ACT to celebrate with them 30 years of support to defence widows in the ACT from 1981 to the present. For those that are unaware of the Defence Widows Support Group and who they are, the Defence Widows Support Group is a subgroup of the ACT Branch of the Defence Force Welfare Association and operates with its full support. The combined aim is to provide immediate and effective advice to defence widows and widowers—advice that is independent of any government agency. The majority of the members of the support group are defence widows and widowers who have the experience and compassion to understand how the newly bereaved feel and how best to offer advice and support.
The support group maintains a network of contact with defence widows—I understand that it is over 300 widows that they support—and organises three lunches a year and distributes chocolates and cards at Christmas. This is of particular importance for those widows who do not qualify for a war widows pension or legacy support.
I would like to pay particular thanks to the members of the support group: Patricia Adams, Christine Bollen, Nola Branson, Penny Chiles, Marion Cleghorn, David Clinch, Claire Fergusson, June Healy, Helen Jones, Dawn Laing, Christine Lamb, Betty Latham, Robin Mahood, Marjanneke and Phil McGuire, Jean Pearson, Gwynyth Peddey, Elaine Pennock, Jeanette Plowright, Yvonne Plunkett, Judy Rule, Annette Sadler, Heather Schmitzer, Margery Smyth, Mindy Sutherland, and Maelyn Wishart.
I had the pleasure of meeting many of the members of the support group today. They are certainly doing fine work in support of our widows here in the ACT. I would like to pass on my congratulations and thanks to the president and all of the members of the support group and wish them well for the future.