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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 7 Hansard (6 August) . .

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The struggle for nuclear disarmament continues. The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons—ICAN—is a community campaign bringing together civil society groups, non-government organisations, churches and citizens to build a groundswell of public opinion to demand an end to nuclear weapons. ICAN aims to achieve a nuclear weapons convention to ban the development, possession and use of nuclear weapons.

One of their campaigns is the mayors for peace program, a worldwide network for mayors and local governments which aims to expedite the decommissioning of nuclear weapons under existing non-proliferation agreements and which encourages full disarmament by 2020. It also seeks to build cultures of peace in member cities. Membership currently stands at 6,206 cities in 160 countries, and I understand that Canberra is a member city of this program.

Sixty-nine years after that fateful day, the voices of the bomb survivors, or "hibakusha", as they are known in Japanese, continue to be a source of information and inspiration for those who are trying to understand and learn from what happened in Hiroshima and, of course, Nagasaki. The Atomic Bomb Museum has this testimony from survivor Shizuko Nishimoto:

Alas, August 6 comes 'round again. That horrible A-bomb, that scorched earth, the fire that left all Hiroshima in ashes, these are all vivid in my memory. No words or pictures could ever express the cruelty of the atomic bomb.

On this day, we heed the words of someone who saw that cruelty with her own eyes and remember those who did not survive that horrible atomic bomb. Indeed it is apt that we also take this opportunity to honour all the civilian victims of all the wars, including the innocent people that have lost their lives in conflicts of our own time. They are not forgotten.

Health care

MS BERRY (Ginninderra) (5.51): Today is the 40th anniversary of Australia's first universal healthcare scheme. It is with great sadness that I rise in this chamber to share stories I heard today at a rally in support of this scheme. It is deeply saddening that Canberrans would need to come together to support this very basic right of access to health care, but they did.

Pensioners, parents and students rallied today, and it was clear why they did. The federal Liberal Party's attacks on Medicare is a very serious business. At the rally I was happy to see the fantastic crew from Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service, who know what the costly co-payments that the federal Liberal government wants to introduce will mean to the many disadvantaged people and the vulnerable in our community that they treat every day.

Margaret knows that the clients she sees at the EMC will not get the medical care that they desperately need. George Blatmann, a young ANU student, knows what the Medicare levy will mean to students reliant on inadequate rates of youth allowance. They will not be able to see a doctor.


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