I rise today to speak about my constituent Mrs Dorette Sayegh, an exceptional woman who recently celebrated her 80th birthday. Dorette lives in Greenvale Lakes in my electorate, and I was honoured to have been invited to share this very important milestone with her and her family. Dorette's elegance, her calm and her inspirational zest for life were palpable on that day. She not only has the distinction of being the first woman to qualify as a dentist in her home town of Basra, Iraq, but has also recently overcame breast cancer.Dorette's family is typical of the many Iraqi families that live in my electorate.


My grievance today is about the government's controversial 2014 federal budget measures and the effect they are going to have on the people in my electorate of Calwell, who will inevitably bear the full brunt of the government's budget cuts.              


The Muslim Leadership Program (MLP) is an annual program co-coordinated by the Centre for Dialogue at La Trobe University and the Islamic Council of Victoria (ICV).

Tonight I want to speak about two very important events that I have been involved in, which are of particular benefit for young people—not only in my own electorate but to young people across the country and indeed around the world. This afternoon I had the great pleasure as the co-convenor of the parliamentary friendship group for raising breast cancer awareness amongst young adults to help launch a mobile phone app designed to encourage and help young people to conduct and manage their monthly breast examinations. The Young Adult program, or YAP App, as it is known, has the backing of Google and is the brainchild of the late Peter Hill, the wonderful son of a very dear friend of mine, Roz Hill, who is herself the founder and CEO of YAP. Roz is a breast cancer survivor and has been a tireless advocate for raising breast cancer awareness amongst men and women. She is an amazing inspiration, a woman who is a no-nonsense advocate who quietly goes about her work in a very low-key but very effective manner. I first met Roz some 10 years ago when she embarked on a campaign up here in this place to have breast prosthetics put on the Medicare rebate for those women who had to have mastectomies. Some 10 years later Roz is still advocating the vital importance of early detection. The friendship group, which I co-convene with (read more)