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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 7 December 2004 2004) . . Page.. 21 ..


Minister, Jon Stanhope, whose leadership since 2001 has effected real change in our community, in rebuilding public services and building a vibrant and inclusive environment for Canberra for Canberrans to thrive in; and to you, Mr Speaker, for your commitment to the people of Canberra through your long service in this Assembly.

While the list of all those who gave up their valuable time and energy during my campaign and on polling day is too long to mention, I thank all of you for your belief in the work that we have done, and will do, together. I make particular note of John Tuckey, Jenny Appleby and Mark Hogan for their enduring and uncompromising support. To Kave Ringi, Katherine Swarbuck, John Clarke, Kerry and Zac Bush, Liz McKittrick, John Edwards, Rebecca Driver and my daughter Kirrilee Gentleman: their work made it possible to complete all of those challenging campaign tasks.

Thank you to my mentors, both in the Transport Workers Union and now in political life, Andrew Whale and Trevor Santi, and to those current officials of the Transport Workers Union—Al McLean, Klaus Pinkas, Tony Sheldon, Nymron Nyols and Scott Connelly. Thank you for your work and your support, both in a personal sense and as part of the movement of which I am so honoured to represent. Finally to the members of the Transport Workers Union, whom I have so proudly served in the past: you make the union what it is. To the labour movement in Canberra and beyond, I thank you for your commitment, support and involvement in the struggle for fair wages, decent work and progressive social change.

This family of the labour movement is one I am proud to belong to and am honoured to represent in this Assembly. My experience of living, working and raising a family in the Canberra community, and in my electorate of Brindabella in particular, has been one of being involved in our community. Working for equality, social change and social justice has been key to my working history as a mechanic, postal worker and security officer—and for the Transport Workers Union as a special projects officer.

The traditions of the Australian Labor Party are deeply rooted in the struggles of Australian workers for a fair go, decent working conditions and a fair day’s pay. These struggles continue today. We strive for job security, equal pay, paid parental leave, workers’ entitlements and a balance between work and family. The history of the labour movement is one of involvement and participation in our communities and of struggle for what is right and what is fair. Decent wages and conditions for working people are essential for working families and for a vibrant, functional and inclusive community. I continue to be proud of my personal commitment to, and the work of, the labour movement. My work has been about delivering for and being engaged with the community. Now entering into the Assembly, I am both informed by these experiences and committed to continuing my engagement with the grassroots energy of our community.

Canberra is an exciting place to live and my electorate of Brindabella, the Tuggeranong Valley and the Woden suburbs of Chifley, Pearce and Torrens, holds many opportunities for involvement—from the community arts projects, access to Namadgi national park and other beautiful open spaces, to the services available in the Tuggeranong Centre and the local shopping centres. Local sporting and community organisations are active. I have spent many a Sunday morning watching my kids play sport in the Tuggeranong


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