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Hickey Disappointed about ‘More of the Same’

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Media release – Sue Hickey, outgoing independent MP, 13 May 2021 Hickey grateful for the privilege to serve Tasmanians Former House of Assembly Speaker Sue Hickey said she was a little sad at her close election loss, but more disappointed that Tasmania was destined to receive ‘more of the same’ for the next four years from […]

Media release – Sue Hickey, outgoing independent MP, 13 May 2021

Hickey grateful for the privilege to serve Tasmanians

Former House of Assembly Speaker Sue Hickey said she was a little sad at her close election loss, but more disappointed that Tasmania was destined to receive ‘more of the same’ for the next four years from the re-elected Government.

Ms Hickey said while the outcome in the Clark electorate was in doubt since election night, she always understood it would be challenging for her to win as an independent.

“But I was proud of my campaign and proud that I raised from the very outset, the important issues of the health crisis and the nurse shortage at the Royal Hobart Hospital, affordable housing and homelessness, traffic and transport problems, prison reform, political donation legislation and transparency and accountability in Government.

“These issues were picked up by Labor and others late in the campaign and I hope they will be followed through in the new parliament.”

“I leave my role in parliament knowing that I helped women access abortion in Tasmania and convinced the Government to pump an extra $5m pumped into the emergency department at one stage. I got the Tasmanian Government to embrace the national system for access to medicinal cannabis and achieved $7.2m over two years to address the appalling wait list for women with gynaecological issues. I was honoured to be present for the passing of the historical VAD bill and, despite it being widely misunderstood at the time, I helped Tasmanian to achieve the best gender laws in the country as verified by the TLRI and now finally embraced by the Liberal Government.

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“Over my three year term I also collected tens of thousands of dollars worth of donations to help people in need, including shaving my head to raise over $10,000 for the Leukemia Foundation. I advocated strongly for extra temporary accommodation for people experiencing homelessness, leading to pod housing being constructed at Bethlehem House and Hobart Women’s Shelter. I also convinced the Government to replace all gas heaters in public housing with more efficient heat pumps.

“The achievement I am most proud of is the transformation of Oakleigh Court Housing Estate from a government run shop front for drugs and crime and a dingy hell hole to a state of the art home for the 50 elderly residents to live in safety and peace. It took three years of badgering, but it shows what can be done with a change of focus.

“My three year journey has taught me how privileged I was to work to support so many people of desperate need. For some, Tasmania is a land of plenty but for the other half it is a constant struggle for survival with their health, housing, mental health and literacy problems. With more than one in four Tasmanian’s living in poverty, I fear that unless the Government steps up with some very brave ideas, generational problems will plague us as a community and as a cost centre.”

Ms Hickey said Tasmania had endured an unnecessary and costly election that essentially returned the status quo, all based on a lie.

“The Premier never lost his majority in parliament as I had guaranteed him support and he had already signed up Madeleine Ogilvie.

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“Yet he took the opportunist course and attempted to cash-in on the management of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“While this did not pay off for him and in fact the Liberals vote decreased slightly, Labor also lost support, so unfortunately Tasmanians have ended up with essentially the same people taking the similar approach that they’ve adopted over the past seven years.

“I am more disappointed for the more than 50,000 people on hospital waiting lists, 12,000 waiting for dental work and the 10,000 of more waiting for housing and others in need, as the Government has no incentive to do better.”

Ms Hickey said the Liberal and Labor Parties need to realise they had a significant problem in the south of the State.

“The increase in votes for the Greens in Clark and Franklin and the votes for Kristie Johnston and me in Clark show that people in the south are very disillusioned with the two major parties. The parties need to do something about it.

“That means selecting good candidates who represent mainstream Tasmanians rather than those favoured by the factional bosses and adopting policies that encourage growth, but also take care of the vulnerable in our community.

“There’s little evidence that they will do that and both parties will continue to favour the north of the state where it seems elections are won.”

Ms Hickey congratulated Kristie Johnston and wished her well. Ms Hickey said she was determined to continue to work for the causes she promoted during her campaign.

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“I want to thank all those people who encouraged and supported me over my term in Parliament and during the election and particularly the small and dedicated team who went above and beyond during the election campaign.”

Source: Tasmanian Times https://www.tasmaniantimes.com/2021/05/hickey-disappointed-about-more-of-the-same/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=hickey-disappointed-about-more-of-the-same

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