Paul O'Grady Condolences
Today we mourn the loss of Paul O’Grady - NSW’s first openly gay state MP Paul O’Grady.
Paul was a tenacious and respected activist and leader with true Labor values who many would often turn to for advice.
Serving in the Legislative council from 1988 to 1996, he took the courageous step of disclosing his sexuality in 1990 - a first for the NSW Parliament at the time.
We believe our Parliament should aspire to reflect the full diversity of people across our community – and Paul was a trailblazer simply by his presence.
Our hope is that Paul's great example - and all who have come after him - will inspire gay and lesbian Australians to be excited by the possibilities of the political process.
However he also made an enormous impact through his work as well, passionately fighting against all forms of discrimination - particularly those affecting people with HIV/AIDS.
He was a formidable political strategist who played a crucial role in Labor’s 1991 and 1995 election campaigns. In the latter years of the former Labor government he was a key advisor to Environment Minister Frank Sartor.
Paul’s powerful evidence to the 2013 NSW Parliamentary inquiry into medicinal cannabis informs current Labor policy to allow its use to alleviate the suffering of people with terminal conditions.
Add your name to the condolence book today, and we will compile and print a copy to be sent to Paul’s family.
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