Page 1191 - Week 04 - Wednesday, 29 March 2017

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to get out on the water and enjoy a day of sailing. Participating in Sailability’s activities was an opportunity for my son to feel welcomed and included.

I was honoured to attend the recent launch of Sailability’s new boat, George, with Minister Stephen-Smith and Ms Lee. At this launch I was taken on a sail around the picturesque Lake Tuggeranong by an Australian paralympian silver medallist. It was incredible watching the skill and experience as she took me for a sail around the lake. There was very little wind on that particular day so it was all due to her skill that we moved seamlessly through the water. The most enjoyable part for me was the enjoyment I saw on her face and the thrill she was getting doing something she loved. I thank all the volunteers who make Sailability possible, for the work they have done to improve the lives of those in my family as well as the entire community.

Secondly, I want to speak briefly on the work our government is doing for women in our community. Canberra stands tall in the space of women’s participation. This Assembly is one shining example of that. The employment participation of women in Canberra is a testament to the inclusive nature of our city and recognition that when women are included and empowered, our economy, our city and our community thrive.

I am also proud of the work Labor continues to do in promoting women’s inclusion in sport. Participation in sport has always been something that has lifted my confidence and given me a way to meet new people. Being a woman who loves sport, particularly male-dominated sports, is tough. For too long, women’s sport has been undervalued and underfunded.

Sport has the ability to build confidence and make women of all ages feel included. Promoting inclusion in this area is so important for our future as a progressive city. Labor will continue to support Canberra’s female sporting teams and promote women’s representation on sporting boards. We will continue to fight gender inequality in all forms. I am proud of this fact and will always continue to advocate on this issue.

Last night I had the pleasure of being at the launch of the Canberra Multicultural Women’s Forum, along with many of my colleagues, including Minister Stephen-Smith. It is events like these that go beyond tolerance and acceptance. These platforms allow open discussion and knowledge sharing. They celebrate diversity, but they also examine the work that is still to be done.

At last night’s event I met a lovely young woman who moved to Australia from Iran in 2012 so she could study here. One thing that struck me while I was speaking with her was her resilience and overwhelming positivity, even when detailing to me the many adversities she has faced. She is now married and enjoys calling Canberra her home.

Last night’s event was a fantastic opportunity for women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds to come together. It is opportunities like these that promote inclusivity in our community. I thank the Canberra Multicultural Women’s Forum for their fantastic work in our community.

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