Richmond MP and new Federal Minister for Ageing Justine Elliot.
Richmond MP and new Federal Minister for Ageing Justine Elliot.

Elliot keen to get into new portfolio

By SAMANTHA HEALY news@northernstar.com.au NEW Federal Minister for Ageing Justine Elliot believes her Richmond electorate, dominated by an older demographic, is a snapshot of Australia's future years.

And while she may have only been officially sworn in to her new position this week alongside two fellow former Nambour High School students in Kevin Rudd and Wayne Swan Ms Elliot is moving into her new Canberra offices and is ready to start work.

"It's exciting and a real honour. I am just looking forward to getting started," Ms Elliot said. "It's an honour to be appointed in this role, but it is a real privilege to be able to represent Richmond in parliament.

"I couldn't be better placed in the Richmond electorate when it comes to hearing the concerns of seniors."

And while she may now be sharing her time between her Fingal home, her South Tweed and Canberra offices, Ms Elliot said that no matter where she was, her heart would always be in Richmond. "Their concerns are reflective of the concerns in other parts of Australia. The proportion of elderly people in Richmond is over 20 per cent. It really is a snapshot of what Australia can expect in future years," she said.

Ms Elliot said the Richmond electorate could be considered the 'guinea pig' in terms of fixing services for seniors.

"This area has truly provided me with a great insight and background for this portfolio," Ms Elliot said. "I have spent the past three years speaking with seniors as an MP and I wish to continue that.

"I feel very strongly about upholding the dignity and respect that our seniors deserve.

"It is important we acknowledge the outstanding contributions seniors have made ... the depression, the war years, their working life and the outstanding volunteer work that they, particularly in our area, do everyday."

At the swearing in ceremony in Canberra this Ms Elliot's family husband Craig and children Alex and Joe were there to witness her latest political milestone.



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