Please tell us a little about yourself – your upbringing, family, interests etc.
I was raised in regional South Australia (Limestone Coast) where I attended school and worked after leaving school. I returned to the region after living and working in Adelaide for many years.
I am dedicated to improving the lives of people who don’t enjoy the same chances that many of us take for granted, through education, stronger family support and opening up opportunities for people to reach their potential. I consider that a strong safety net as well as a robust economy are both essential to this goal, and protections for fair wages and safe conditions are also central.
I am a Christian mother and have been married to my husband for 25 years. We have six children, who range in age from 22 to eight years old.
I was previously State Manager of the Australian Forest Products Association, and am passionate about the importance of regional areas to the South Australian economy. As well as private sector roles in forestry and human resources, I have many years’ experience in government policy and service delivery. I also understand first-hand the rewards and challenges of self-employment. I have post-graduate qualification in management and business.
What are the top two priorities that you want to achieve for your electorate?
I am running for the Legislative Council, so my electorate is the whole State, but I have a particular commitment to the Limestone Coast, where I live. I would like to see more support for start-up microbusinesses, as I consider self-employment has the potential to create independence and valuable self-reliance for people. The internet-based economy means that location does not need to limit one’s ability to market to the country and the world.
My work in the forest industries showed me the potential of bioenergy in providing renewable, clean base-load power, and I would like to build on the work already started by the State Government in progressing bioenergy.
I would also like further early intervention for drug users and more parenting skills/life skills programs.
No one wants to see any child bullied at school for any reason. But recent anti-bullying programs seem to have gone beyond this aim. Do you agree with state funding of the SHINE SA Safe Schools program which applies contested and scientifically unsound gender theory into all SA state schools without the need for parental consent? The program also seems to promote radical LGBTIQ concepts to children without parental consent.
Anti-bullying programs should teach respect for everyone and treating others as one would like to be treated. These are the simple and essential tools that should be the foundation of any anti-bullying program. For those of us who are Christians, we believe all people are made in the image of God, and are therefore worthy of dignity and fair treatment. I strongly believe that biology determines whether we are male or female and it is destructive to teach that our feelings determine our gender.
If elected will you support an independent inquiry into the implementation of the SHINE SA Safe Schools program and the mandating of the Supporting Same sex attracted, Intersex and Gender Diverse Students Policy November 2016: and the Transgender and Intersex Students Support Procedure November 2016?
I am not familiar with the detail of these two policies so I cannot comment directly. I refer to my remarks under Q3.
The SA parliament has unsuccessfully attempted to reform prostitution law in SA for many years. It is clear that prostitution degrades women by objectifying them as commodities for men’s sexual gratification. Internationally, policies discouraging demand for sexual services are proving to be the most effective way of limiting both the size of and the harms resulting from prostitution. The progressive “Nordic model” criminalises the buyer of sex, not the provider, and provides viable pathways for those wishing to exit prostitution.
Would you support a Nordic Model Bill in the next parliament to help vulnerable women in SA?
Yes. Legalising prostitution increases ‘demand’ which leads to further abuse of women.
Euthanasia has been rejected by SA parliaments on 15 occasions. Would you oppose or support any future attempts to legalise euthanasia in SA?
I oppose legalisation of euthanasia.
According to Palliative Care SA about 6000 South Australians will die this year without adequate palliative care. Would you support:
A. Increased funding for palliative care in this State?
B. an inquiry into improving end of life treatment for South Australians and in particular into how palliative care may be improved?
Drugs continue to wreak havoc in our community. Some are suggesting the decriminalisation of small volume use and possession of illicit drugs.
Would you support or oppose legislation to enable this?
I would need to know more detail of proposed legislation, but I cannot see how such decriminalisation would improve the situations for people.
Given that the advances in medical science mean that children are now capable of being born alive at 24 weeks of a woman’s pregnancy, would you support a review of section 82A(8) of the Criminal Law Consolidation Act 1935 which says that “evidence that a woman had at any material time been pregnant for a period of twenty-eight weeks or more shall be prima facie proof that she was at that time pregnant of a child capable of being born alive” with a view to bringing it into line with current medical science and so changing the period to 24 weeks?
I agree that the law should keep up with medical advances.
Do you support faith-based organisations’ current right to, if they so choose, restrict employment or enrolment to those who share their ethos, just like political parties do?
Poker machines cause a great deal of social harm to vulnerable South Australians. Over $60 million is lost monthly on poker machines in South Australia, with a significant portion of this attributed losses suffered by women.
A.Do you support legislating for $1 bets? B. What other measures do you support to help at-risk South Australians and their families?
I am very familiar with the harm caused by problem gambling and support measures that reduce those harms and support the families affected. I am not familiar enough with the proposed $1 bet suggestion to commit without more information. Unfortunately, many community organisations now rely on the revenue raised from having poker machines in their facilities, and any changes need to look at how to transition such reliance to other income streams.
How would you like to be remembered as a parliamentarian?
I would like to be remembered as a person of integrity who fought for people who are disadvantaged and helped to maintain a robust economy that strengthens the community.