6 December 2023
Now, I have messages from the member for Warringah, the member for Curtin and the member for Mackellar. I will start with the member for Warringah:
Together in the class of 2019 MPs, Peta and I gave our first speeches on the same day, full of excitement, passion, pride and determination to make a difference. I remember the day so well, full of trepidation at the job ahead, getting through mine and then listening to hers. I loved her reference to Pippi Longstocking and her strength, resilience, kindness, fairness and acceptance.
Peta was inspiring, tenacious, kind, funny and smart, with so much more to give. She is gone much too soon.
Peta was gracious and dignified. It's hard to imagine how challenging her time in parliament has been, fighting such a big personal fight as well as giving so much back, with her commitment and passion for her community always so strong, being in parliament only a few days ago. She spoke of wanting to make parliament and politics better and she did.
Her dedication to so many issues and raising awareness about cancer, particularly breast cancer, was admirable. Peta transformed her personal battle with breast cancer into a platform for public policy advocacy, ceaselessly championing for improved treatment, expanded services, and stronger support systems.
In a year where over 3,200 Australians, including a notable number of males, are projected to succumb to breast cancer, Peta's contribution becomes even more significant. The statistics paint a stark picture, with approximately one woman under the age of 40 expected to lose her life to breast cancer each week.
As we grapple with the reality of Peta's passing, our thoughts extend to all those battling illness. Our deepest sympathies go out to Peta's family.
The halls of parliament will feel empty without her presence.
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