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Cassy O'Connor MP

Greens' Leader | Member for Clark (formerly Denison)

SHADOW PORTFOLIOS

Leader of Greens' Business | Aboriginal Affairs | Animal Welfare | Community Development | Education, Skills and Training | Employment, Trade and Economic Development | Federal State Relations | Forests and Mining | Human Services | Infrastructure, Transport and Population | Parks, Public Lands and Heritage | Primary Industries | Sport and Recreation | Tourism and Hospitality | Treasury | Workplace Relations

 

Cassy O'Connor MP is the Leader of the Tasmanian Greens and our MP for Clark. She supports creating a prosperous, low-carbon economy powered by renewable energy, and is a passionate voice for people with disabilities, refugees, children and marginalized Tasmanians.

ABOUT CASSY

A former journalist and community activist, Cassy O’Connor is passionate about Tasmania’s special places and its people.

To become the Tasmania we are capable of being, we must look after our most vulnerable citizens with far more heart – the young Tasmanians who sleep on the streets at night; the children of poverty and addiction; the elderly, alone in their homes; ageing carers; old and new Tasmanians, exposed to racism as a result of their perceived difference; and Tasmanians living with mental illness, with physical, or intellectual impairment.

Cassy was born in Canberra and raised in South East Asia and on Stradbroke Island in Queensland. She moved to Tasmania in 1989 and worked as journalist and political advisor. She also found time to have four beautiful Tasmanian children.

Cassy became a community activist in 2004 as the public face of the campaign to protect the Ralphs Bay Conservation Area at Lauderdale from a Gold Coast-style canal housing estate. She is determined that community and conservation should come first in Tasmania.

Cassy was first elected to Parliament in July 2008 as the Greens member for Denison on count-back following the resignation of long serving Greens Member and Leader Peg Putt. On 19 August 2008, Cassy became the first person to be sworn in as a Member of the Tasmanian Parliament outside Hobart, during the Launceston sitting of State Parliament.

After being soundly re-elected at the top of the Denison poll in March 2010, Cassy became the first Greens' female MP nationally to secure a Cabinet position, when she was made Cabinet Secretary in the Labor-Greens power-sharing minority government. After a Cabinet reshuffle, Cassy then became the first Greens' female MP to become a Minister, when she was sworn in as Minister for Community Development, Aboriginal Affairs, Climate Change, and Housing.

Cassy is focussed on about working hard to support vulnerable Tasmanians.

In her inaugural speech made in Launceston in 2008, she called for tripartisan support for the Parliament to formally acknowledge the terrible wrongs of the past and to apologise to the victims of Willow Court and the Royal Derwent, and to their families. Cassy is determined to see that the word 'sorry' is said.

Cassy is committed to policy reform that protects the rights and meets the needs of Tasmanians with disabilities and their families.

In Parliament

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Thank you, Madam Speaker. If there ever was an argument for restoring the numbers in the House of Assembly it is this legislation which has clearly come about for two reasons - one, because this Government has an allergy to transparent processes, and two, because it does not have the backbench to staff its committees including the Public Works Committee.

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Madam Speaker, I move -

    That the House take note of the following matter: gambling harm.

  • Ms O'CONNOR question to TREASURER, Mr GUTWEIN

    You may be aware that last year the people of Devonport lost more than $10 million in the city's poker machines. You should also be aware that socio-economic disadvantage is entrenched in the poorer parts of Devonport and that your policy, which will be enacted through legislation early next year, will ensure that enormous social and economic harm continues for the next two decades at least.




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    Ms O'CONNOR question to TREASURER, Mr GUTWEIN

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Madam Speaker, I rise in my capacity as the Greens spokesperson for women and also communities to make a contribution on notice of motion 173.




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    Ms O'CONNOR question to MINISTER for MENTAL HEALTH and WELLBEING, Mr ROCKLIFF

  • Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr HODGMAN

    Premier, on 26 January 2015 as the newly minted premier, or relatively so, you promised to reset the relationship with Aboriginal Tasmanians. Since then your Government has returned no lands, is pushing to reopen tracks through ancient heritage in takayna, is actively dividing Aboriginal communities, and you have walked away from the portfolio leaving failure in your wake.

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Madam Speaker, the Greens will be supporting the Restraint Orders Bill 2019.

    We recognise that restraint orders and the capacity for a court to hear the evidence of the need for a restraint order and to issue one is an important component of protecting the blameless from harm which is perpetrated by another. If we lived in a kinder, more compassionate and gentle society, there may not be a need for restraint orders but there clearly is.

  • Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr HODGMAN

    Last night on ABC Four Corners, your Government's neglect of the health system was revealed to a national audience with people dying as a direct result of a hospital under-resourced and staff overstretched beyond capacity. It has been confirmed since you came to office in 2014, around $1.6 billion of Commonwealth funding that should have gone into the health system has been spent elsewhere. Tasmania, a state with the oldest population and the highest chronic disease burden, has the lowest per capita spend on Health.

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Madam Deputy Speaker, I wanted to raise the issue of the wonderful heritage precinct of Willow Court at New Norfolk. As every member of this House knows, Willow Court has a dark history but it is one of those sites in Tasmania that we need to look after.

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Mr Deputy Speaker, I will not be speaking for long on this rubbish motion. It is Thursday, it is not private members' time, it is not Government private members' time, and we have a motion on the books which has no action attached to it and no tangibles for people who need housing. It is simply an exercise in self-congratulation.

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Madam Deputy Speaker, apart from being completely boring, that contribution from Mr Tucker failed to mention human beings. Failed to acknowledge that there are people right now sleeping on the Domain, sleeping in the rivulet, who are living in insecure housing, who cannot afford to pay their rent.

  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens - motion) - Madam Speaker, I move -

    That so much of the Standing Orders be suspended as would prevent debate on the following motion: that the House condemns the Hodgman Liberal Government for its reckless mismanagement of wildlife in Tasmania that is driving species towards extinction.

  • Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr HODGMAN

    Today landmark human rights reforms, which your Government fought every step of the way and Labor now is sadly distancing itself from, come into effect and transgender Tasmanians are celebrating.

    Ms Haddad - How have I distanced myself?




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  • Ms O'CONNOR (Clark - Leader of the Greens) - Madam Deputy Speaker, of course we will not be supporting this garbage motion either. It was not put forward with the intention of anyone but Labor supporting it. It is not an attempt to be constructive or collaborative or to advance policy interests in the interests of the people of Tasmania. It is nothing more than positioning and politicking. It is riddled with untruths, as was Ms White's speech on the motion.

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