Page 796 - Week 02 - Thursday, 25 February 2010

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we will have quite an Assembly contingent, I imagine. Hopefully, the Liberal table will show off our expertise when it comes to the quiz night.

Mr Barr: Matters of trivia.

MR COE: Very worthwhile trivia, as opposed to the flippant interjections from Mr Barr.

I would also like to raise awareness of the million paws walk, which is coming up very soon, on 16 May. On 16 May, as I said, the million paws walk will be held. It is an annual fundraising event for all animal lovers. The RSPCA hope that all people can take the opportunity to join family and friends and walk for all creatures great and small and enjoy a fun-filled day of entertainment. I am going to have to borrow four paws to participate in that million paws walk but I do look forward to it.

Finally, I would like to put my thanks to Sandy Tanner for his great service in my office. He has been a friend of 10 years and has worked with me since October, since I was elected. He is leaving this place to go back to working on the hill, and I would like to say that he has been an exemplary staff member, dedicated, loyal, a lot of conviction. He is a conservative, he is a Liberal, he is a Christian, he is a monarchist, he is a good guy. And I very much take my hat off to him and support the great commitment he has shown me over the last year or so.

Healthy Weight Week

MS BRESNAN (Brindabella) (4.58): I would like to talk about Healthy Weight Week. Although it occurred in the last week of January, it is an important issue that we should be supporting. According to the Dieticians Association of Australia, as many as 62 per cent of Australians are overweight or obese and 68 per cent of adult men fit within this category. Diabetes is obviously connected to this. There are up to 3.2 million people in Australia who now have this disease. We do need to look at how we can inspire people to change their habits, health and wellbeing, particularly given these high rates of diabetes in the country.

There is a great deal of information about this topic. However, considering that Australians work some of the longest hours in the OECD, it is worth looking at how we can transform the culture practices of our workplace. A program such as the health and wellbeing $200 subsidy, encouraging public servants to invest in their health, is an excellent initiative. In our Assembly we have the weekly yoga class which has been made available to people and the corporate challenge last Saturday that was organised by Laura Stuart.

Something that I have recently learnt about is an initiative called the go green, get lean, cycle to campus challenge, through the ANU. The program provides a structured framework for staff and postgraduate students at the ANU to make the transition from motorised commuting to cycling to campus. Participants in the challenge follow a 10-week fitness program, which involves encouraging people to cycle to the ANU.

In addition to cycling, participants get involved in exercise sessions that focus on strength and flexibility and conditioning. The idea is that the fitness program and

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