VALEDICTORY Gerry Kandelaars

VALEDICTORY

February 15, 2017

Legislative Council

 

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS (16:31):  I rise very briefly because others have said so many of the things I wanted to say. I cannot help but remark today in a very positive light on the impact that the Hon. Gerry Kandelaars has had on this place. I remember vividly the very honourable member's first speech and seeing the faces of some of his Labor right colleagues when we realised there was a sea change in this place on issues particularly to do with what has been referred to as 'rainbow communities'.

 I want to say that I have really admired Gerry's open-mindedness and acceptance particularly of the most marginalised people in our society on AIDS/HIV issues, on issues to do with the trans community, those who are seen as gender diverse and queer and not important, often, in our public debates. Gerry accorded all those people the importance they truly deserve and I really appreciated his commitment there. Indeed, I also appreciated his commitment on one of those many committees in looking at one of my bills on the 'gay panic' defence not once but twice, giving him that extra work.

 Gerry was a sea change in this place on some of those issues and it came from his passion (not just for his family who of course, I think he is representing when he speaks on some of those issues) and his deep-seated respect for the diversity of humankind across a range of issues. I always enjoyed that. I also enjoyed lunches with Gerry and his staff and the wonderful Toni and her everchanging hair colours in this place, not just brightening up this place with that attribute but of indeed with the wit and wisdom and the genuine acceptance of that diversity. I have appreciated that.

 Lots of people have referred to you today as 'Gerry' rather than 'the Hon. Gerry Kandelaars'. I think it is because you have done honour to this place and you will be honourable as you leave. I wish you and Glenys all the best and I wish your family health and happiness for a long time to come, long after you have left this place.

  Sitting suspended from 16:33 to 16:46.

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