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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

  • QUESTION WITHOUT NOTICE

    Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr HODGMAN
  • NOTICE OF MOTION

    That this House:

    1. Acknowledges the 916 full time positions that have been cut from the public service - the 158 teachers gone from our schools and the 337 health professionals now missing from our health system;

    2. Notes with shame Treasurer Gutwein's false claims that Tasmania's healthy financial state is due to 'strong fiscal discipline' and the reduced spending on consumables;

    3. Understands that there is a certainly a requirement to buy less stationery  when there are 916 less people in government offices;

  • NOTICE OF MOTION

    That this House:

    1.     Acknowledges the over 1200 Tasmanians who packed Hobart's City Hall on 8th August 2015 in support of marriage equality in Australia;

    2.     Understands that equal marriage would be the most important step our country could take to end discrimination against LGBTI Australians;

    3.     Commends federal LNP Warren Ensch for defying the entrenched discriminatory policy within his party and tabling marriage equality legislation;

    4.     Recognises the underlying Liberal principle of individual freedom;

  • NOTICE OF MOTION

    That the House:

    1.     Recognises the profound social and economic harm caused by problem gambling and the proliferation of poker machines in pubs and clubs in Tasmania;

    2.     Notes that the Federal Group has reaped massive profits at the expense of low income Tasmanians as a result of the 15 year monopoly on gambling venues in Tasmania, a secretly negotiated deal supported by both Labor and Liberal parties;

    3.     Notes that the monopoly license expires in 2018, an election year;

  • NOTICE OF MOTION

    Tuesday, 16 June 2015

    Cassy O’Connor MP on tomorrow to move -

    That this House:

    1.     Understands that the Tasmanian Aboriginal Legal Service has been providing legal assistance and support to the Tasmanian Aboriginal community for 42 years;

    2.     Notes with shame the decision of Federal Attorney General George Brandis to not renew a five year funding agreement with the Tasmanian Aboriginal Legal Service, and instead fund a Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service to cover Tasmania;

  • NOTICE OF MOTION

    Tuesday, 16 June 2015

    Cassy O'Connor MP on tomorrow to move:

    That this House:

    1. Notes that World Elder Abuse Awareness Day was held on the 15th of June and that Tasmania's Parliament House was bathed in purple light to raise awareness of the debilitating and damaging social malaise that is elder abuse;

    2. Understands that elder abuse can take the shape of physical, social, financial, psychological or sexual abuse and can include mistreatment and neglect;

  • NOTICE OF MOTION

    Thursday, 4 June 2015

    Cassy O’Connor MP on tomorrow to move -

    That this House:

    1.     Notes that yesterday was Mabo Day, which marked the 23rd anniversary of the landmark court case that made land rights possible for aboriginal Australians;

    2.     Understands that while this was historic and meant our first Australians' could "possess, occupy, use and enjoy" culturally-significant land, it did not mean the same for the Tasmanian Aboriginal community;

  • NOTICE OF MOTION

    Thursday, 4 June 2015

    Cassy O’Connor MP on tomorrow to move -

    That this House:

    1.     Acknowledges that Tasmania is a warm-hearted and welcoming community;

    2.     Recognises the kindness shown by Tasmanians to the Kosovo refugees in the 1990s and more recently to our new arrivals and the Pontville asylum seekers;

    3.     Congratulates New South Wales for officially signing on to the federal Safe Haven Enterprise Scheme;

  • [11.57 a.m.]

    Ms O'CONNOR (Denison) - 

  • Ms O'CONNOR to MINISTER for PLANNING and LOCAL GOVERNMENT, Mr GUTWEIN
       
    [10.18 a.m.]
    You are aware that across Tasmania there are communities who were told not to drink their water because it is not safe or to boil it before drinking. Towns like Winnaleah, Whitemark on Flinders, Rossarden, Avoca - which has had cadmium detected in its water supply - and Pioneer, which has lead levels 22 times above Australian drinking water standards.
  • Ms O'CONNOR question to MINISTER for HEALTH, Mr FERGUSON
       
    [10.12 a.m.]
    Do you agree that, despite the Budget's extra allocation of $2.4 million over four years, mental health services for young Tasmanians remain the most poorly resourced in the country?
     
    Do you agree that young Tasmanians suffering mental ill health are being largely shut out by a system which is almost criminally under-resourced?
  • Notice of Motion

    Wednesday, 3 June 2015

    Cassy O’Connor MP on tomorrow to move -

    That this House:

    1. Notes the 2015/16 Liberal State Budget once more holds little for Tasmanians in need;

    2. Recognises the harsh cuts to Tasmania's social fabric inflicted by the previous year's Liberal State and Federal Budgets a point made strongly by the Tasmanian Council of Social Services;

  • Notice of Motion

    Tuesday, 2 June 2015

    Cassy O'Connor MP on tomorrow to move

    That the House:

    1. Understands that Housing Tasmania’s waiting lists were at their lowest level in a decade under the previous Labor-Green Government;

    2. Notes with shame that in just over a year of ‘stable majority Government’, the Minister for Human Services, Hon Jacquie Petrusma MP has presided over a massive 43.5% jump in the housing waiting list;

  • Ms O'CONNOR question to MINISTER for HUMAN SERVICES, Mrs PETRUSMA
       
    [10.19 a.m.]
    Did you feel ripped off when the Treasurer handed down his second Budget last week? How do you explain to the housing and homelessness sector the woeful budget outlook for Tasmanians needing a secure affordable home because you failed to advocate strongly enough on their behalf during the Budget process.
  • Ms O'CONNOR question to MINISTER for HEALTH, Mr FERGUSON
       
    [10.33 a.m.]
    After months of prevaricating your Commonwealth colleagues have today announced a two-year funding deal for the Mersey hospital. Do you agree with Devonport Mayor, Steve Martin, that the $148 million over two years, while welcome, is a bandaid solution that provides no long-term certainty for the Mersey? Do you agree the Abbott Government should have made a longer-term funding commitment to the Mersey?
  • Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr HODGMAN
       
    [10.12 a.m.]
    The rumour mill is alive with stories of your Parliamentary Secretary, Mr Brooks', conduct on your recent trip to China. Is it a fact that he embarrassed the delegation more than once? Is it a fact that he missed more than one bus? Can you give the House a full report on Mr Brooks' conduct in China?

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