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Thursday, 24 February 2011
Page: 1467

Mr MORRISON (9:54 AM) —I rise today to pay tribute to my state parliamentary colleague the member for Cronulla, Malcolm Kerr. Malcolm Kerr was elected in 1984 and in his maiden speech he quoted the great Edmund Burke:

It ought to be the happiness and glory of a representative to live in the strictest union, the closest correspondence, and the most unreserved communication with his constituents. Their wishes ought to have great weight with him; their opinion, high respect … It is his duty to sacrifice his repose, his pleasures, his satisfactions, to theirs; and above all, ever, and in all cases, to prefer their interest to his own.

Malcolm Kerr has lived that for the last 27 years in our state parliament. He has lived that in our community, of which he is a dear friend. Malcolm has campaigned over this period of time and exemplified those great campaigning skills you would expect of any great local member. He has campaigned on roads, on beaches, on waterways, on schools, on hospitals and on youth issues over a very long period of time. In particular, he has been a strong advocate for law and order issues, protection and support for our police service and the integrity of our legal system. These are things that have marked out his career as a local politician doing a great local job for a great local community.

Malcolm has also stood up to recognise our great cultural heritage in this country. As a fellow representative of the area of our nation’s modern birthplace at Kurnell, Malcolm has always sought to honour the stories of our past, which go back not just several centuries but several thousand centuries. He has sought, like others and me, to try to tell and celebrate these stories together, rather than have them be a cause for division. He has celebrated cultural diversity, as I share in doing with him. In the comments he has made in our community he has always said that we must achieve unity in our efforts as much as we seek to recognise diversity. We do that through a sense of shared values that have been time honoured over our great history.

Malcolm has championed the cause of freedom of religion. As someone with a fellow faith to Malcolm, that is something that we share in great commonality. If we do not have freedom of religion in the religion that we practise then others cannot also have it. That is the shared sense of freedom of religion which I think all members in this place celebrate.

Malcolm is a great friend of our community—they love him and they have reason to love him. He has been an honourable friend to them; he has been at everything he should be at, and more, because of his great love and affection for his community. Malcolm is a friend of mine who has gone through difficult circumstances of late in suffering from depression, and I am so pleased to report to this House that he has conquered that through great strength, through the support of his friends and great care from the medical services.

As we go forward an election presents itself, and I wish all of those Liberal candidates who are standing in the shire—Mark Speakman, Graham Annesley, Melanie Gibbons and Lee Evans, every success. (Time expired)