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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 4 Hansard (30 March) . . Page.. 1243..

Tuesday, 30 March 2004

The Assembly met at 10.30 am.

MR SPEAKER (Mr Berry) took the chair at 10.30 am, made a formal recognition that the Assembly was meeting on the lands of the traditional owners, and asked members to stand in silence and pray or reflect on their responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Death of Brian I'Anson

MR STANHOPE (Chief Minister, Attorney-General, Minister for Environment and Minister for Community Affairs): I move:

That this Assembly expresses its deep regret at the death of Brian I'Anson, a passionate campaigner for the disadvantaged, particularly the mentally ill, and tenders its profound sympathy to his family, friends and colleagues in their bereavement.

Brian I'Anson died unexpectedly 10 days ago-on 20 March. He will be sadly missed by his wife, Jill Clapin, his children Mark and Sharon, and his stepchildren Garth, Megan and Barrie. The loss of Brian I'Anson also will be felt by the Canberra community as a whole.

At the thanksgiving service held on Friday, Brian's friends and family spoke about the man they knew, a man who cared deeply for the dignity of the human person. He was passionate about issues of justice and was not afraid to speak out when he perceived injustice. Overall, Brian I'Anson was known for his quiet tenacity in pursuing and achieving better outcomes for the disadvantaged. His contributions to mental health in the ACT were remarkable and he has left a lasting legacy.

Brian I'Anson had a long and distinguished career with the Commonwealth public service and he was active in the trade union movement. In the early 1970s, he served as president of the Administrative and Clerical Officers Association, which later became the Community and Public Sector Union. Brian was a member of the Australian Labor Party for a time during the formative years of the establishment of the ACT branch of the party. It was in that capacity that I first met him.

Brian was an active member of many community associations and societies, including the Australian-Chinese and the Australian-Vietnamese associations. In 1976, his profound belief in social justice led Brian to establish the Barton Cooperative Housing Society, to provide low-cost housing for disadvantaged members of our community.

In 1983, Brian became actively involved with an issue that was very close to his heart when he became a founding member of the Mental Health Resource community service. He was also a founding member of the ACT Association for Mental Health, which later became the ACT Mental Health Foundation. He served as president of that organisation from 1990 to 1997.

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